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Southern Hills United School Age Care & Pre-School

3400 East 49th Street
Sioux Falls, SD 57103

Phone:
(605) 371-8770

Website:

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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

The Southern Hills Preschool offers a progressive curriculum that builds on strengths of students. The program provides a stimulating learning environment that will help prepare students for kindergarten and instill a love of learning. We offer a unique program to parents using an online product called Teaching Strategies GOLD. GOLD is an assessment system that helps teachers be intentional in their teaching by accurately pinpointing where children are in their development and learning. It's a teacher-friendly, easy-to-understand approach to observation, documentation, portfolio-building, and reporting--the essential components of a high-quality assessment system. This system allows parents immediate access to reports that show their child's development and activities that are up to date. It also allows parents to provide input to the program which helps staff develop activities specifically planned for their child's needs.

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
  • Computer Literacy Activities
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
  • Hands on Math Manipulatives
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
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
  • Listening Centers
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

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
  • Frequent Field Trips
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Our program is excited to offer additional enrichment to students with both fine arts and fitness teachers. Also, our preschool is able to demonstrate effective teaching with measured outcomes. We know our program helps kids learn and are able to provide evidence to parents.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

The Southern Hills Preschool offers a progressive curriculum that builds on strengths of students. The program provides a stimulating learning environment that will help prepare students for kindergarten and instill a love of learning.

We offer a unique program to parents using an online product called Teaching Strategies GOLD. GOLD is an assessment system that helps teachers be intentional in their teaching by accurately pinpointing where children are in their development and learning. It's a teacher-friendly, easy-to-understand approach to observation, documentation, portfolio-building, and reporting--the essential components of a high-quality assessment system. This system allows parents immediate access to reports that show their child's development and activities that are up to date. It also allows parents to provide input to the program which helps staff develop activities specifically planned for their child's needs.
This program is uniquely able to provide teachers with information on each child's current progress on stated goals and therefore allows teachers to individualize instruction and learning fun.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

The Southern Hills Preschool offers a progressive curriculum that builds on strengths of students. The program provides a stimulating learning environment that will help prepare students for kindergarten and instill a love of learning.

We offer a unique program to parents using an online product called Teaching Strategies GOLD. GOLD is an assessment system that helps teachers be intentional in their teaching by accurately pinpointing where children are in their development and learning. It's a teacher-friendly, easy-to-understand approach to observation, documentation, portfolio-building, and reporting--the essential components of a high-quality assessment system. This system allows parents immediate access to reports that show their child's development and activities that are up to date. It also allows parents to provide input to the program which helps staff develop activities specifically planned for their child's needs.

The program is open to three- to five-year-olds who are able to use the restroom independently. Southern Hills supports both full-time and part-time students with a variety of schedules to meet the needs of families. Before- and after-school care is available from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Staff at LSS After-School & Summer Programs are high quality professionals with education and experience in early childhood development and elementary education. Staff is provided with consistent ongoing training. Southern Hills Preschool is accredited by the Council on Accreditation for Children and Family Services and is licensed by the state of South Dakota.

A Typical Day

We offer a variety of full and part time schedules to meet the needs of families.

The curriculum is designed to ensure that children enter kindergarten ready for success.

Social & Emotional Development
Verbal & Linguistic Skills
Artistic Creativity
Social Studies
Science & Nature
Logic & Mathematics
Physical & Kinesthetic Movement
Bible Stories

Sample Preschool Schedule
7:00am Supervised Choice Time
8:30am Snack
9:00am Circle Time, Literacy, Art, Recess, Bible, Math, Science/Social Studies, Free Choice
11:45 am Dismissal of Part-time Preschoolers
Noon Lunch
12:30pm Explorers Rest Time, Free Play, Story Time, Learning Centers
3:00 pm Snack
3:30pm Recess and Play Centers

Please note that parents can choose whether their child naps or attends academic enrichment classes. It is recommended that children preparing to go to kindergarten stop napping a few months before kindergarten to prepare for the all day schedule.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

We are passionate that the best people to help children becomes successful learners are their family members. We send home weekly classroom newsletters and monthly program newsletters by email and on paper. We offer parent-teacher conferences twice each year and invite parents to stop in any time. We invite parents to join us for field trips, service-learning activities and daily activities. We offer a unique program to parents using an online product called Teaching Strategies GOLD. GOLD is an assessment system that helps teachers be intentional in their teaching by accurately pinpointing where children are in their development and learning. It's a teacher-friendly, easy-to-understand approach to observation, documentation, portfolio-building, and reporting--the essential components of a high-quality assessment system. This system allows parents immediate access to reports that show their child's development and activities that are up to date. It also allows parents to provide input to the program which helps staff develop activities specifically planned for their child's needs.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • 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
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school

Separation

Separation is Handled through:

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

Handling Separation: From the Director

We believe that each child is unique and therefore our approach to this challenge varies based on each child and each family. However, generally this involves inviting parents to be involved in the classroom, having staff members able to help the child become involved in activities, and spending time prior to the first day of school allowing students to become comfortable with both staff members and the environment.