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Claymont Preschool at St Mark's

601 Claymont Drive
Ballwin, MO 63011

(636) 386-5437


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

Children learn through play. Play is their work. They learn about the world around us, develop social skills and work on fine and gross motor skills. We believe that fun-filled preschool days generate a love of learning and prepare children for their next school experience.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

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

More Information

  • 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
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

More Information

  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • We have a science specialist teacher to enhance the regular science classroom experience.
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
  • Daily music and movement with specialist teacher in all classes
Visual arts more

More Information

  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
Physical activity more

More Information

  • 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
  • We have two outdoor playgrounds and well as two indoor play spaces for different ages.
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Our teachers do an excellent job of individualizing instruction for children's different learning styles.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

With our low student/teacher ratio and having two highly experienced, caring and loving teachers in each classroom, we can tailor our teaching to a variety of learning styles.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Claymont Preschool at St. Mark has been providing quality early education to children in West St. Louis County since 1962. As an outreach of St. Mark Presbyterian Church, we are dedicated to providing a nurturing, stimuating environment for emotional, intellectual, and physical growth. Goals are: to respect and address each child's developmental needs, abilities, and experience.
to develop positive feelings of self worth.
to encourage children to express their needs in appropriate ways.
to learn to get along with other children by
leading, following, and accepting differences.
to trust and enjoy adults.
to develop gross and fine motor skills.
to make choices, explore, question, & use their imagination.
to enjoy books, music, and the outside world. to work with parents to guide children through these important early years."

Excerpted from the preschool's website

A Typical Day

Fours' Daily Schedule
Class Meeting Time
Free choice, art projects and small group work
Clean up and snack
Circle Time (all about me poster, show and tell, class graph)
Large motor activities-outside or in the gym
Good-bye circle

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Communication between the school and home is very important to us. We encourage parents who are able to come into the school to pick up their children after class. They can see and talk with the teacher each day their child attends. Monthly newsletters and calendars are sent home from each classroom. A weekly log is posted on bulletin boards outside classrom doors and updated daily. We have formal parent/teacher conferences while the children are in class and informal telephone conferences after class hours. Teachers are available outside of the classroom by phone. We have an evening Open House early in the school year and a parent orientation before the start of school.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • 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:

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

Handling Separation: From the Director

Depending on age level (we have 2 year olds), parent and child attend together on the first day of school. Early in the school year there is an extra teacher in the classroom and the director is always available. We have some favorite play items that usually provide a wonderful distraction for children with separation anxiety, as well as loving teacher arms and laps. Parents can always call and check on their child.