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Centegra Childtime Care Center

4201 Medical Center Drive
Mchenry, IL 60050

(815) 363-2356


Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Reggio-Emilia

From the Director:

The Empowered Childâ„¢ curriculum is inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to early learning and is based on the work of respected child development/early education theorists Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson and Lev Vygotsky. Results from a preschool assessment tool showed that our children made substantial gains in their learning and development and have the educational skills needed for a successful transition into kindergarten.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

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

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

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  • Puzzles
Time & space more

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  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Building blocks
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
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
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
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Through The Empowered Childâ„¢ curriculum, children: * Have access to a huge variety of activities. * Discover their own special talents and best ways to learn. * Feel valued for who they are. * Have the guidance and the freedom to learn in meaningful ways. * Develop critical thinking and problem solving.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Childtime’s educational philosophy is based on the Reggio Emilia approach, named after the Italian city and the surrounding villages where the method took root after World War II.

Central to this philosophy is the belief that secure relationships with responsive and respectful adults provide the basis for all learning. With these relationships in place, children develop a capacity for trust, competence and independence that helps them grow as students and people.

Our The Empowered Child™ curriculum strengthens children’s emerging physical, social-emotional, cognitive and language skills, to prepare your child for kindergarten and beyond. We do this with developmentally appropriate experiences, wondrous classroom spaces and responsive teacher-child relationships.

A Typical Day

The best way to experience this is to come visit us!

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

We communicate with parents via daily reports, monthly newsletters, classroom and/or center bulletin boards, and parent/teacher conferences. Parents are always welcome to check in through a phone call or visiting us during their lunch hour.


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school

Handling Separation: From the Director

We encourage parents to visit the center with their children and visit the classroom. These simple introductions help relieve some of the initial stress of starting.

Many of our classrooms have two teachers, so there is always one teacher available to help with separating. Tears are short lived as the child's focus is turned toward classroom activities or talk about their clothes or other favorite topics.