Tender Years Academy Pre-Kindergarten
Our Pre-Kindergarten program at Tender Years is licensed by the PA Department of Education and taught by certified teachers. It is designed to accommodate students ages 4 to 5. We offer a full-day program as well as a half-day program (morning or afternoon).
Daily Information & Communication
Information for parents is posted in a designated area of the classroom. Lesson plans, schedules, newsletters and menus will be found here. The teacher will also write about your child’s daily activities and post them in this area. We ask that you check your child’s cubby daily for other items such as permission slips and letters from the director.
Extra clothing should be kept in your child’s cubby. We suggest keeping a long sleeved shirt, a short sleeved shirt, two pair of pants, two pair of socks, and several pairs of underpants. When your child’s clothes have been changed, we will send the soiled items home to be washed. Please remember to replace the extra clothing items that were used as soon as possible. Children grow quickly! Please check periodically to make sure that the clothing is the right size, and weather appropriate.
Bedding for nap-time use should include a crib sheet and a blanket, or a small sleeping bag. Large pillows are not needed and are difficult to store according to health guidelines; please do not send them in. All bedding will be sent home weekly to be laundered. If you accidentally forget to bring in your child’s bedding, Tender Years does have clean sheets and blankets for your child to borrow. Nap time “friends” are welcome, as long as they are “soft and small”. If a toy used at nap-time becomes disruptive, the child will be asked to put it in his/her cubby.
Meals & Snacks
Tender Years provides a morning snack. A general menu is posted to give you an idea of the types of snack items that we will serve. The afternoon snacks are provided by the parents for the class on a rotating basis. Bought snacks need to be unopened and in their original wrapping. No glass bottles, please. Homemade goodies are welcome; however, uneaten portions must be sent home or thrown away. For lunch, you may choose to pack a lunch, or purchase a hot lunch for an additional cost from our catering service. Menus are available to help you make your choices. When packing lunch, please note that we are not permitted to microwave food for the children. You may pack hot foods in a thermos, or pack items that are ready to eat. All items that require refrigeration must be labeled before putting them in the refrigerator.
At Tender Years, our curriculum is based on the PA State Early Learning Standards that are in line with the standards that are required in the public school system. In addition, our lessons are constructed around a theme. These themes usually reflect the seasons, holidays, or concepts of interest from the world around us. Some examples of themes that you may see are:
• My Family
• Feelings & Friendship
• Fall Weather
• Pilgrims & Native Americans
• Hibernating Animals
• Christmas Traditions
• Holidays Around the World
• Presidents’ Day
• Dental Health
• Windy Weather
• Caterpillar to Butterfly
• Seeds to Flowers
• Summer Sun
• Creatures That Fly
• Earth Day
• Diversity & Tolerance
• Outer Space
• My Community
Lesson plans are posted weekly for your review. Please feel free to ask your child’s teacher any questions that you may have about the activities that are planned.
Academics and Educational Philosophy
All of the planned activities in Pre-K help to enhance valuable skills. Literacy is supported through reading, storytelling, language building, letter recognition and phonetics. As your child is preparing for Kindergarten, we will work with him/her on writing skills. Fine and gross motor skills are developed through a variety of strengthening exercises. Sensory awareness is gained through tactile play. Art, crafts, music, and pretend play inspire creativity, expression and imagination. Cognitive skills develop through science experiments, and math/number games (working with shapes, sorting, graphing, counting practice, etc.). It is our educational philosophy that children learn best through a variety of experiences, including PLAY! We provide many academic based activities, as well as plenty of time for self-directed play in the many “centers”, or interest areas in the classroom.
Observations and Evaluations
Our teachers make regular observations to track developmental progress. Several times a year we will do a formal evaluation of your child’s progress here at school. At this time, you will be given the opportunity to schedule a parent/teacher conference to review the evaluation and discuss your child’s Prekindergarten education with the teacher.
Discipline and Guidance
The following methods are used in the Pre-K classroom to encourage and help the children to do the right thing and make good choices:
• Modeling appropriate behavior
• Praise and compliment good behavior
• Redirect to another activity
• Explain why an action is inappropriate
• Consequences for actions
Time out may primarily be used as a means of separating the child from others while the child regains control of himself/herself. We teach the children to express themselves non-violently as well as encouraging self-control, self-direction, responsibility, and cooperation. Practical, safe, and logical consequences will be presented in discipline situations. Parents will be informed if a major discipline problem develops. While it is important for parents to know about any problems, it is not our intention for further action to be taken at home. Open communication is the best key to successful discipline. In addition, each teacher may implement other discipline or guidance methods on an individual basis such as: sticker reward systems, or red light/green light.
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