Westwood Children’s School offers a Preschool program for children ages 2.9 to 3.9 years, with a ratio of preschooler to caregiver of 10/1.
Preschool Program Hours and Schedule Options:
- Full year program
- Open Monday – Friday, 7 am – 6 pm
- School closings:
- Closed approx. 12 days per year and 1 week during the summer
- Severe weather: we make every attempt to open to accommodate working parents but will, if necessary, open late, close early, or as a last resort close for the whole day.
- Scheduling Options for Your Preschooler:
- Full Day: 7 am – 6 pm
- Early Pick-Up: 7 am – 3:30 pm
- Mid-Day: 9 am – 3:30 pm
- Preschoolers are encouraged to attend at least 2 days per week.
Curriculum for our Preschool Program:
Early childhood education is what we know best at Westwood Children’s School. Children at this age learn most effectively in an environment with a balance of fun, exploratory play, with an introduction to letters, numbers, shapes, and colors. Our Preschool children are working on building these beginning skills to provide a strong educational foundation for their next step. Our Preschool classroom features:
- Learning Letters: As they grow, your child’s simple scribbles turn into the beginning of controlled marks, and then to intentional forms and beginning letters.
- Teaching Method: Our teachers use a variety of manipulatives, sensory play opportunities, and a variety of art and writing materials for fine motor practice and development of a productive pencil grip.
- Preschool Writing: Your child in Preschool is working on making the connections between letters and sounds–the basis for future reading. Weekly letter practice focuses not only on how the letter is formed for writing, but also how the letter is formed in your mouth when speaking and trying to make connections to other letters and sounds.
- Daily Routine: Your child’s Preschool classroom experience will include: practice writing names, repeated exposure to print in the classroom, dictating a story to a teacher who will write it out, and expressing thoughts using art and beginning letter forms.
- Daily Read-Alouds: Your child will have daily read-alouds and one-on-one reading with a teacher, as well as access to quality books throughout the day, providing the foundation for a love of reading. We also have quarterly visits from the librarian from the Westwood Public Library.
Science & Math
- Exploration: Science and math are all about exploration in our Preschool class. Your child will have different materials to build with, explore, count, sort, pattern, group, and graph. Teachers use everyday situations to lay the groundwork for STEM concepts: for example, counting fruit slices at snack, pouring water in the sensory table, and constructing an amazing block structure.
- Monthly Learning Themes: Your child will have an organized way to learn about our world, the animals we share it with, and the way things work.
- Animal Science: Your child will explore nature and learn about respect for the animal kingdom through weekly Animal Science lessons with Matthew Coughlin, known to the children as Mr. Matt.
- Spanish: through stories and simple words, your child will be exposed to Spanish as part of their Preschool class.
- American Sign Language (ASL): Your Preschooler will have regular classes with our ASL Specialist.
Social Emotional Learning
- Your child will get a well-rounded education that includes learning important social emotional skills to help them succeed in life! Learning to share toys, self-advocate when they have a problem, be flexible when needed, and show respect for themselves and others.
- Emotions and sharing: At Westwood Children’s School, your child will learn about their emotions and how to share them in a safe, respectful way. Our teachers introduce self-regulation and executive function skills that will prepare your child for the school years ahead – while having fun in a nurturing, warm environment.
- Music and Art Every Day: Our Preschoolers explore visual arts and music daily in their classroom. Your child will model with clay, create sculptures and 3D structures, paint and draw, and glue and make collages. We sing songs as part of our daily routine and share opportunities to dance, play instruments, and move our bodies to rhythms. We especially enjoy our monthly visits with music specialist, Hugh Hanley.
Physical Education & Wellness
- Get Moving: Moving is a way of life for Preschool children, and we give them ample daily opportunity to run, climb, jump, bounce, dig and play! Come to our early childhood playground, which offers a wide-range of active play, along with large group games, seasonal water and snow play. Your child has two outside opportunities each day, weather permitting, as we understand that young children have to move to learn.
- Yoga: Your child will take a yoga class twice per month with Miss Sandra, our Yoga specialist: not only fun, but a great way to practice flexibility and breathing techniques that can support self-regulation.
At Westwood Children’s School we respect each child as an individual, knowing that they learn and develop along their own timeline. As education professionals, our teachers are well-versed in child development and supporting children’s individual learning goals.
- Assessment Tool:We are proud to use Teaching Strategies Gold. This research and evidence-based assessment tool provides a thorough look at each child’s current development and allows teachers and parents to work together to set goals for future learning.
- Ongoing Observation: Teachers make observations throughout their day to track children’s progress over time. These daily observations become a digital portfolio of your child’s learning during their time at Tobin. You are invited in for parent-teacher conferences three times a year to set goals and review progress. In addition, we encourage you to talk to us at any time – we want to build an active partnership with you throughout the year.