Our Preschool is a stimulating and exciting learning environment where the teachers are invested in creating classrooms that are socially, emotionally and physically safe and abundant with opportunities for discovery.
We recognize that children are individuals with different needs. We believe they learn best in a diverse and respectful environment that uses their interests to help them discover knowledge.
Our learning centers in the classrooms include: science, art, music, dramatic play, reading, writing, blocks and manipulatives.
The classroom is a language rich environment to help motivate and support early academic experiences for children. Curriculum is developed around both the individual and the group.
Each child has a primary teacher who works closely with the child's family. Our classrooms provide continuity of teaching that allows for more meaningful relationships between teachers, children and families. Children stay with the same teachers and children while they are in the Preschool and Pre-K Programs.
MCCDC is designated as a Santa Clara County Model Inclusion site. Inclusion offers typically developing children and children with special needs an opportunity to learn in an authentic environment rich with diversity. We meet the needs of each individual child and their families.
We enroll children into classrooms by their Kindergarten entry date in order to ensure that they will be able to stay with their like-age peers throughout their enrollment at our center.
There are three meals during the day: breakfast, lunch and snack. The hot lunches and the other meals for the yonger age groups, are prepared on site and are menu based. The older children help to prepare their own breakfasts and snacks.
There is a large group time in the older classrooms in the morning where the group of children sit with their teacher and listen to books, discuss ideas and thoughts and follow a teacher led group time.
The activities that are set up during the AM are refective of the children's developmental goals and provide choices for them to explore.
Teachers also watch for the children's ideas to surface. For example, a group of children who discover bugs in the grass might be supported by a teacher who gets bug jars and helps the children to catch the bugs, ask questions, count and compare them, among other activities. They may pull books, songs or flannel stories for the group time about bugs and follow the children's interests.
This emergent approach to curriculum helps children to learn that their ideas are important. This is the foundation needed for later exploration and discovery. Where would we be if Sir isaac Newton did not realize that his ideas were important and worth exploring? Additionally, the emergent approach, in action, keeps the children engaged while the teachers weave in foundational concepts such as counting, one-to-one correspondance, whole to part relationship, etc.
After lunch, the children lay down for a group nap/rest time. Children who do not sleep are offered a quiet activity to do on their mat such as reading or puzzles.
As the children wake up from their rest time, there are a variety of activities offered for them to do, similar to the activities in the morning, continuing themes and developmental learning opportunities.
As the day winds down, teachers talk with parents and read quietly with children or facilitate activities.
Some days, children also take nature walks on the Mission College campus to explore what is available for them to see and touch and learn about.