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Cornerstone Preschool

6601 Camden Avenue
San Jose, CA 95120

(408) 268-7595


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

Our program schedule is very structured. We set aside significant time zones for free play, large motor development, music, and small group teacher directed activities. We strive for balance in all the important areas. Free play time is equipped with activity choices that build development. Children learn best through play. Teachers see to it that the materials and equipment that children play with is developmentally appropriate as well as appealing to the child.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

More Information

  • Tracing paper and other writing instruments
  • A well-stocked bookcase
  • show and tell and small group language experiences
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
  • skills practice sorting, classifying, matching, one to one correspondence activities
Time & space more

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  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
  • large motor activities involving our body in space
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

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  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
  • experiments and a large repertoire of sensory exploration
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
  • music is used throughout the curriculum and it has it's own time in the schedule. Music builds strong language skills.
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
  • skills practice activities that encourage children to truly see what they are looking at. An aesthetically pleasing and stimulating environment.
Physical activity more

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  • A playground with climbing equipment
  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Tricycles
  • Enough room for children to move around and play and a suitable indoor alternative to the outdoor playground on rainy days
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
  • Movement time has it's own time in our schedule on a daily basis in addition to the areas mentioned above.
Other subjects taught Cornerstone is owned by South Hills Community Church and teaches Christian principles in developmentally appropriate ways. The Christian principles most closely resemble appropriate social and life lessons. Our focus on social skill building is very strong.

From the Director:

Teachers see to it that all developmental areas are covered and children receive a balance of opportunities to experience and master skills. Child directed activity centers are our first line approach; however teachers guide and direct through dialogue within those activities and reinforce concepts through small group interaction.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

We see each child as an individual. We start where the child is currently and move with them in appropriate steps and stages to grow in a forward direction. Our developmental approach allows every child to learn and grow in the same classroom. We welcome children with special needs into our classrooms and the staff and other children learn to understand and accommodate these children.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

We believe every child is unique and deserves unconditional love, and acceptance. Through our enriched preschool curriculum, we encourage development of a healthy self-concept, appropriate social interaction through play and small group activities, gross and fine motor skill development, intellectual growth and academic preparation, and integration of biblical truths into every part of the child's learning experience.

We strive to build a strong educational and personal foundation for every child. Cornerstone is a developmental program. We recognize that children move through specific stages of development at their own indidividual pace.

Each child has their own learning style and temperament which contributes to how they process information and retain it as knowledge. Cornerstone recognizes that children construct knowledge through hands-on exploration and discovery. We understand the significance of mastery at each developmental level. Cornerstone focuses on the process of learning, rather than the product.

A Typical Day

Upon arrival (9:00 am) the child will choose a cubby and put their name tag on it. They will hang up their coats/sweaters and go directly to a skills practice activity. This activity will take approximately two minutes.

When completed they can enter the free play period (9:00 - 10:15).

After clean up and snack they will participate in Bible time in the large group (10:40-11:00).

They go outside for 30 minutes of playground free play and then return to the classroom for small group table time (11:30-11:50).

Next is movement and music time (11:50-12:15).

The class concludes with show and tell time.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Informal dialogue at drop off and pick up. Casual notes or phone calls when appropriate. Conferences called by parents or teachers. Progress reports in November and May. Parents are encouraged to participate in the classroom when interested and we have observation windows for viewing.We will advise any parent that asks and will give them the benefit of our knowledge and experience. Mostly, we describe the type of environment we feel their child will be most successful in and then list some options in that category.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Home visits by teachers
  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Extra staff dedicated to handle separation
  • Parents in classroom early on

Handling Separation: From the Director

Individually! We encourage parents to stay or go quickly depending on the individual child. We will hold and comfort the child and try to engage them in an activity. We encourage parents to watch from the observation windows once they leave.