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Da Vinci Academy

37W080 Hopps Road
Elgin, IL 60124

(847) 841-7532


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Da Vinci Academy is an ISACS accredited independent school for intellectually gifted & talented students in grades PK-8. Our pre-school program includes half-day PK3 and full-day PK4, with up to 16 students and two teachers.

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Teacher-Led

From the Director:

Da Vinci Academy provides an excellent program for young learners who show signs that they need a more challenging academic environment. These students are intellectually curious, have a natural passion for learning, and demonstrate accelerated development in one or more areas. Our PK3 and PK4 students typically function beyond their same-age peers in one or more of the following areas: verbal skills and complexity of language, memory, learning new concepts quickly with little repetition, making connections, recognizing patterns and relationships (language or math concepts), and visual-spatial skills (puzzles, taking things apart, advanced building or art). Each child is unique and has different strengths, but these traits are common among the students in Pre-K at Da Vinci.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense
Time & space
Sci. reasoning/physical world
Visual arts
Physical activity
Other subjects taught PK4 students receive weekly instruction in Spanish, Art, Music, Computer, and Physical Education.

From the Director:

Teachers are facilitators in providing learning experiences, while allowing for a more student-centered approach to achieving our classroom goals. The Pre-K program centers around a theme- based, inter-disciplinary curriculum that covers all subject areas (language arts, math, science, etc.). Key skills and concepts are emphasized in math and language arts, with the flexibility to challenge students appropriately.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

We aim to provide meaningful, guided experiences that allow the children to grow and to learn at their own pace while building a foundation for social and academic success. The Pre-K classroom teacher has a Master's degree, and she and her full-time assistant have been together at Da Vinci since 2001.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Da Vinci Academy was founded specifically to serve the educational needs of gifted students. Children with exceptional academic and intellectual abilities need the right type of school and educational environment in which to thrive, and since opening its doors in 2000, Da Vinci Academy has worked toward being that kind of place. The school's philosophy, curriculum, faculty, and administration are all focused on serving families with gifted students. Our goal is to provide a safe environment where each student is known, valued, challenged, and engaged."
Excerpted from the preschool's website

A Typical Day

PK3 is in class Mon-Fri from 8:45-11:15 AM. Part of the morning is combined with PK4 for language arts, and the rest is by themselves for math and theme units. PK3 also has PE twice a week, plus library time and weekly reading with third grade students.

PK4 is in class Mon-Fri from 8:45 AM to 2:15 PM. In addition to instruction in the core subjects (language arts, math, science, social studies), PK4 students receive weekly instruction in Spanish, Art, Music, Computer, and Physical Education.

Home-School Connection

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Phone Calls
  • 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:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school