Center-Based-Learning creates clear-cut areas for learning. Each center has a different educational focus, such as motor skill or cognitive development, that inspires hands-on learning in an organized way. Centers are coordinated based on content or activity areas, such as dramatic play, reading, art, science, manip
ulatives, and blocks.
Including centers in the classroom encourages young children to explore materials on their own and gives children the chance to choose what they want to try. One child may choose to use a microscope in the science center, while another independently explores plastic bugs with a magnifying glass. This exploration develops self-confidence, prepares the children for the similar choice-times they will make in Kindergarten, and breeds creativity as most often centers include raw materials.
The materials in each learning center encourage hands-on exploration. And even though centers encourage play, they help children learn. Just because a child is playing with blocks or finger painting doesn't mean that she isn't learning as well. For example, playing in the block area can help children learn basic math ideas such as shapes and patterns. Finger painting is a tool for early hand-writing.
Our centers are well-structured and completely accessible to the children in the classroom. The materials, storage units, tables and chairs are all on the child's level. While center-based learning doesn't mean everything is kept out all of the time, it does mean that children have easy access to tools during Center Time so that they can decide with what they want to experiment, tinker, or create a brilliant masterpiece.
All of our Center Times end with a Class Circle Time, an opportunity to practice listening, repeating, and body control. At this time, the lesson of the day is discussed, at least one story is read, and the children participate in a group discussion.
Our teachers work in early childhood education because they love what they do. They embrace their role and look at it as one that should inspire children on a daily basis to embrace the world around them. They look at each child as an individual and foster the growth of each student in a special way, indicative to that child’s needs and interests.
All teachers are trained to participate as partners in children's activities rather than relate to children as supervisors. Training emphasizes positive interaction strategies which include forming authentic relationships with children, sharing control with children, focusing on children's strengths, supporting children's play ideas, and adopting a problem-solving approach to disagreements.
Lead preschool teachers hold degrees in elementary education, early learning development and education, or have the equivalent education and experience. Teachers are required to continue their education based on state guidelines for mandatory training hours. All teachers are trained in CPR and first aid. All personnel undergo a thorough police background check.