The Discovery Garden Preschool
Procedures and Policies
The Discovery Table will be set up for the children to explore as soon as they arrive. They are encouraged to examine and play with the items on the table as they discover what our theme for the week might be. These items will be different from week to week, and maybe even from day to day, depending on the scope of our theme. Sensory bins, sorting/sequencing cards, math and language activities as they relate to our theme, and many other hands on activities will be introduced during this time. The Discovery Table will also be set up and available during free play, and for a short time again at the end of the day, so there will be multiple opportunities for the children to interact with these items.
Circle Time begins with Calendar Time where I teach the days of the week, months of the year, and we discuss and add the daily forecast to our weather graph. Doing this, children learn how to identify concepts like most and least, and this also helps them to see that graphs and charts teach about the real world. After Calendar Time I’ll introduce and discuss our weekly theme. In addition to these themes I’ll also introduce a letter, some words that begin with that letter, a number, a color, and a shape each week. Circle time is also when we’ll have singing time where I’ll introduce some new songs that tie into our thematic units, and where we’ll sing some of our old favorites too. I’ll e-mail you a weekly letter detailing our classroom activities and any important announcements; I’ll also include the lyrics and tunes to the new songs we’re learning so that you can sing them with your child too.
When circle time ends we’ll move on to Table Time to start the daily curriculum. There will be a math and phonics worksheet to reinforce the concepts introduced during circle time and this will also correspond to our weekly theme…. for example if our unit is “The Ocean” and the number is 6 the children would be asked to color or circle 6 Starfish and then they would be given the opportunity to practice writing the number 6 on their worksheet. If the letter is S, they may be asked to draw a line from the letter S to all the pictures that begin with the S sound and their choices would be things like starfish, seashells, salt, etc. Other skills will be covered at this time as well, such as cutting and pasting, rhyming, patterns, sequencing and conceptual worksheets (opposites, between, over/under, longest/shortest, etc.)
Following Table Time the children will participate in a Science Project or an Art Activity that ties into our weekly theme. If our unit is “Dinosaurs” then the science project would consist of making fossils…using plaster of Paris, sand and toy dinosaurs. Using hands-on learning techniques the children would discover how fossils were created as well as how scientists excavate and restore dinosaur bones today. The Art Activity might focus on sculpting and painting dinosaur eggs, or creating dinosaur footprint art. During Art, the main focus will always be on creativity and individual results, with the goal being to explore as many different mediums as possible. The end result is never as important as the process.
Snack Time each day will be provided by me, and will consist of a fruit or vegetable mixed with a whole grain snack or dairy. When possible our theme will be incorporated into our snack time…goldfish/whale crackers when discussing the ocean, celery with raisins (flies on a log) when learning about insects, etc. With water or milk to drink.
After snack time everyone will move on to Free Play, this will re-enforce sharing, patience, and cooperation, and it will also give your child the chance to interact with other children while they have the opportunity to develop their social skills in a familiar setting. Any one of the following is considered free play: access to all the toys, books and puzzles, specific centers and toys added to enhance our weekly thematic units, and outside play when the weather permits, also enriched with unit specific toys.
When Free Play is over, we will have Activity Time. Activity Time will include one of the following; Music and Movement, Cooking in the Kitchen, Creative Writing, Story Boards, Game Time, Play Acting as a group, Class Room Visitors like dentists, firemen, policemen, etc.
After Activity Time, we’ll conclude with Story Time. There should be time to read anywhere from 1 to 3 books depending on the length of our other activities. These books will be related to our theme, and will be repeated often during the month to increase familiarity.
Registration Fees are due the first week of May or at the time of enrollment if after May. This fee reserves your child’s spot and pays for their individual supplies as well as shared classroom supplies and fieldtrips.
Tuition is due on the first school day of each month. If your child misses a day, I’ll put together a folder which will include their daily work and any other activities they may have missed that day, but there will not be a credit for missed days. I don’t believe you should have to pay for a preschool day when it falls on a holiday; some months will have reduced rates because of this.
Field trip opportunities will be available almost monthly if a minimum of 3 parents can volunteer to carpool and help with supervision. Most fieldtrips are free, but if there is a cost, it will be covered by your monthly tuition and registration fee.
These are some of the fieldtrips that we’ve taken in the past.
Turkey farm and animal museum at Bolack’s
*Bolack’s requires that every child be accompanied by a parent in order to participate*
Animal Shelter to drop off donations and visiting a Nursing Home to donate a Christmas tree
Park Picnic and Egg Hunt
Berg Park Nature Center
Birthdays will be celebrated with a birthday song, a crown and small gift for the birthday child. The Birthday Child will also be the classroom helper for the day. If your child would like to bring a birthday treat to share with their friends, please package it in such a way that it can be taken home and enjoyed after lunch.
Days Off: I’ll be following the Farmington Municipal School District Calendar, when the schools are not in session neither am I!
October Halloween will be celebrated with a small party, treats and games. Costumes and props are welcome if they do not prevent your child from using the bathroom!
November Thanksgiving will be celebrated with a feast, and a small skit of the 1st Thanksgiving.
December Christmas will be celebrated with a small class party, a service project and a book gift exchange.
February Valentines Day will be celebrated with a class valentine exchange and a small party.
April Easter will be celebrated with a class picnic and an Easter Egg hunt at the park.
May Last day of school party and hat signing with an evening Graduation/Presentation… Graduation for the 2nd year class who will be attending Kindergarten in the fall and a Presentation for the 1st year class to show off some of their newly acquired skills!