The mission of Saint Bernadette Preschool is to prepare our children to be successful students, as they enter Kindergarten. We will build a solid Catholic foundation and a love for learning in each child who enters into our classrooms.  To reach this mission, our Preschool Program will include:

     

The Ohio Department of Education Standards set for Preschool are incorporated into our curriculum.  The components comprising the curriculum of a quality preschool program are:

Spiritual Development
This is an integral part of the Catholic Preschool Program. It is the preparation time for more formal instruction in the years ahead. Religious readiness involves the development of a positive self-image in relationship to a loving God. This basis for a deep love of God comes from the examples set by the family and spiritual life of the parish community. A child’s sense of God comes from the warm atmosphere of love and acceptance in the preschool environment where the child learns about God’s wonderful world. Classroom prayer and a strong religious program, appropriate to the child’s developmental level, prepare him/her to participate in the celebrations of the Church.

Language Development
Language is the development of communication skills that enables a child to share his/her world with others. At the preschool level, these skills include listening, speaking, and thinking. Transferring thoughts into words is the primary skill upon which future language development is based. Learning experiences that promote an understanding of the sense of self-help, will encourage your child to express his/her thoughts and feelings in various ways. An awareness of the five senses will stimulate a child’s curiosity as to the different ways his/her body receives information about life around him/her. Visual discrimination and memory and auditory discrimination and memory are important readiness skills that can be taught through play activities. Listening to and sharing stories, poetry and finger plays as well as writing classroom stories about field trips, events, etc., enhance the love of language.

Social Development
Social development is a primary goal for the young child entering preschool.  A positive self-concept is essential to successful learning. The more a child understands himself/herself, the better equipped he/she is to relate to other children and adults. Basic social interactions between two children, the teacher and a child, and as a member of a group, provide ways in which the child establishes autonomy and learns skills to help him/her relate to their world.

Multicultural Awareness
A positive social development includes awareness on the part of the child of the similarities and differences in family life styles and cultures.

Self-concept activities, stories, field trips, and holiday customs are a few multicultural activities that enhance the child’s awareness that people are alike in many ways but may have different ways of expressing themselves.

Play
Children learn through the experiences in their lives. They need opportunities to explore, ask questions, test out their theories and draw conclusions. Play is the cornerstone of learning for the young child. What starts out as fun and play gradually turns into a learning experience. All play activities hold the potential for growth and learning. Play teaches children about themselves and their world. Play is a way of life for children. Saint Bernadette’s preschool will offer young children the opportunities to learn and grow through planned developmentally appropriate curriculum that has its roots in play.

Art
Art for the young child focuses on process rather than product. Imagination and materials are the only tools needed to be creative. The preschool program at Saint Bernadette will have a variety of materials and mediums for children to explore. Our emphasis will be to encourage discovery and creativity in the young child.

     

Music and Movement
Music is a channel for creative expression in two ways: The manner in which sounds are communicated by the music maker, and the emotional and physical response that sound evokes from the listener. Singing, listening to music, using rhythm instruments, making instruments, dancing, and other rhythmic activities are ways of developing a love and appreciation for music. Rhythm and movement provide an outlet for creative expressions and the joy of using the body in dance, games, and organized play.

Motor Skills
Motor skills are a vital part of the young child’s development and are critical to the learning skills he/she will need in the future. The preschool child learns with his/her body. These motor skills are not to be overlooked in favor of cognitive skills.

Gross Motor: Body coordination, as appropriate to the child’s physical development, is enhanced through large muscle activities of walking, running, jumping, and hopping.  Our curriculum will include outdoor recess, work in the gym, and music and movement in the classroom that will build our Gross Motor skills.

Fine Motor: Eye-hand coordination is developed through manipulating clay, stringing beads, hammering, glueing, crayoning, painting, pouring, lacing and using scissors. Dexterity and strength of the small muscles are developing skills that enhance reading and writing readiness. Use of the natural hand preference is observed and encouraged, although hand dominance is not yet achieved. Eye tracking is another fine motor activity that promotes left to right progression skill required for reading readiness.  We will work to build these Fine Motor skills that will be needed as the child progresses into Kindergarten.