Do you follow a curriculum?
Yes, Massachusetts standards for preschoolers are embedded into thematic play so that every activity is a meaningful, but fun learning experience for your child. There are currently formal preschool standards in the areas of Literacy, Math, Science, and Social-Emotional Development. Our teachers follow a curriculum map which ensures that each child in our program receives a consistent educational experience.
What does a typical preschool day look like?
A lot can happen in two and a half hours! In this time, children will participate in a Circle Time (a large group meeting in which they engage in music, movement, stories and hands-on lessons), Recess (outdoor play), Snack Time, and Center Time (small group activities which provide opportunity to practice skills, engage socially with peers and create).
Do peer model students receive the same amount of teacher attention as students with special needs?
Yes, our teachers are trained to differentiate instruction so that each child receives what he/she needs. Our goal is to make sure that every child continues to learn and grow throughout their time in our program.
How big are the class sizes?
Due to rolling admission, our class sizes start smaller and grow to a maximum of 14 students by year's end. Each class has 1 lead teacher and 1 teacher assistant at all times. Classrooms in which the student population has a higher level of need have additional paraprofessional support.
How do you assess progress?
We use a developmental, observation-based, early childhood assessment tool called, Teaching Strategies Gold. It allows classroom staff to make note of how each child performs while completing classroom activities. Once entered into the system, the program can monitor growth and compare students to their same aged peers, helping us to plan appropriate next steps for instruction and play. We will communicate your child's developmental levels on this assessment on the report card which will go home in January and in June.
When do I find out about policies and procedures?
If your child is starting on the first day of school in September, there will be an Open House scheduled for you in August. You will be given a handbook and your child’s teacher will fill you in on everything you need to know. Students beginning later in the year, will have a “transition visit” when they can come in to see the classroom and meet the teacher. At that time, parents will receive all information and a handbook. This usually occurs at the same time as your registration appointment.
How do teachers communicate with parents?
All teachers send home weekly newsletters describing the week’s theme, concepts and skills so that parents may reinforce these at home. In addition, teachers will have families download the Remind App, so simple reminders and messages can go directly to your phone. We also keep a Home-School Communication notebook in each child’s backpack for passing written information. Parent –Teacher conferences are held in December, but parents are always welcome to call or email their child’s teacher to set up a meeting.
How do you discipline?
We use an approach called, Positive Intervention Behavior and Supports (PBIS). Much can be found online about this approach. In a nut shell, it is a proactive way to set students up for success using lots of visual supports, direct teaching of expectations, modeling and practice. This eliminates the majority of challenging behavior, however, when needed teachers may redirect, correct, or set appropriate limits.