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Chatfield Community Preschool: A sneak peek at a typical preschool day

Fri, Apr 4th, 2014
Posted in Chatfield Education

By LuAnn Klevan

Community Education Director

You probably recognize that preschool is an exciting time for children and their families. But, have you ever wondered about what takes place in a preschool classroom? Let’s take a peek and see.

If you observed a typical day in a Chatfield Community Preschool classroom, you would see that learning begins as soon as a child arrives. They are welcomed with smiles by teachers who are ready to make the learning experience fun and worthwhile. From the very beginning, the preschoolers experience a sense of belonging. They find their names posted on lockers, cubbies, name cards and word walls. During sign-in children learn to recognize and write their names.

Learning comes in many forms. Centers provide opportunities to practice social skills, tryout theme related vocabulary and activities, and interact with teachers and other children. Free time to explore the centers gives children the opportunity to make decisions and to problem solve. Centers include hands-on experiences in art, science, math, writing, and dramatic play.

In circle and group time preschoolers learn through stories, songs, rhymes, morning messages, conversations about the calendar and the weather, and a time to share. During the opening circle time the children discover who will serve as the special helpers. Identifying the weather, being a line leader or caboose, serving as snack helper, or holding the door open gives every child the opportunity to contribute to the classroom.

During outdoor play or gym time, preschoolers run, jump, skip, spin, and play. Large motor skills are developed on a daily basis. Did you realize that mastering large motor skills is an important step in the development of literacy skills?

If you close your eyes, you will hear amazing things taking place in the preschool classroom. You will hear children recognizing rhyming, singing songs, sharing stories, identifying letters & letter sounds, and reading site words. More importantly, you will hear conversations. Teachers will be engaged in discussions with individual children – showing interest by asking questions, and making comments that extend the conversation. Children will be visiting with each other. Whether sitting at the snack table, playing in the dramatic play area, or working at the writing center, children are expanding vocabulary and learning conversational skills.

During one day of observation, there are things happening that you probably will not see. You may not notice a child’s confidence growing as he or she becomes more comfortable with the routine. It will not be obvious to you when the first letter of a child’s name is written for the first time…or the pride that child feels when finally being able to write his or her name without assistance. You will not see the incredible growth that takes place within a few short months. Children begin to regulate their own behavior. They take turns, walk in straight lines, and contribute to the learning experience. By May, one thing becomes obvious upon observation – our PRESCHOOLERS ARE READY FOR THE NEXT STEP!

Chatfield Community Preschool offers two or three day options. Full-day and morning classes are available for both the 3 Year Old and 4 & 5 Year Old classes. Information is on the Community Education page of the school website (www.chatfield.k12.mn.us), at the elementary school office, and at the Community Education Office. If you have questions, please contact LuAnn Klevan at lklevan@chatfield.k12.mn.us or (507)867-4210 x. 5022.

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