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505 E. Buck Rd
Wilmington, DE, 19807
United States

(302) 472-0021

Christ Church Episcopal Preschool educates young children, creates community among school, families, and church, and honors and nurtures children in the Episcopal tradition. We welcome children aged two to five in small classes where all are affirmed as children of God and are inspired and encouraged to become their best selves—socially, emotionally, academically and spiritually. 

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3-Year-Old Program

3-Year-Old Program

Schedule

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Our 3-year-olds are typically in a class with two teachers and up to twelve children. They have the option of attending school three days a week or five days a week and of staying at school from 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM or from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. Early care is also available from 7:30 AM to 8:30 AM and after care is available from 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM.

Each day we serve lunch that’s been made in our kitchen and two snacks.

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Approach

In the 3-year-old program, one of the things parents notice first is that we introduce letter formation through the Handwriting Without Tears program. We also do letter sound activities and begin to introduce phonetics. Instilling a love of learning and building literacy skills are the foundation of many of our activities.

However, there’s another part of the day’s learning that’s easier for parents to miss because it’s not quite as concrete. If you talk with our teachers, they’ll tell you that the 3-year old program is all about developing empathy and social skills. Of course there isn’t a structured curriculum around this, but we’re intentional in our approach.

Learning About Feelings Example

In the beginning of the year, we sit in a circle and discuss feelings. We ask each child to make a happy face, or a scared face, or an angry face and they look at their own face in a handheld mirror, and then we talk about when we feel that way and what we do. We introduce the idea of how we can help others when they’re upset and of tools we can use to help ourselves. We have a calming corner that the children can go to when they need a break. It’s wonderful when later in the year we see the children start to take care of each other and they begin to recognize that care looks different for different friends - one child might want a hug, another might want a favorite toy, another might just want some quiet. Throughout the year, we use books and stories to help us talk about relationships and how to navigate them. The children readily make these text-to -self connections and can verbalize and reflect on how the story applies to them.

Children at this age are often overwhelmed by large groups. Our classes have twelve children at most, but even this can be too much stimulation. So, during free play periods the teachers provide enough structure to encourage the children to play together in smaller groups - two children might be building a train set, another three might be playing dress up, two more might be coloring. These smaller groups are more manageable for our students and they help the children to succeed as they navigate their first relationships. When conflicts do arise, the teacher is there to support them, not to solve the problem. We strive to ensure that each child has a voice and can explain to their friend what they didn’t like and then we support them as they talk through a resolution. It would be quicker and easier for the teacher to fix the situation (for example, she could take whatever the debate is about away completely or she could dictate who could have it), but that wouldn’t help our children to grow. We believe our job is to teach - which means making time and space for lessons as the opportunities arise.

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curriculum

Social & Emotional Development

  • Share and cooperate with others

  • Develop a sense of kindness

  • Show concern about rules and group expectations

  • Begin to participate in the establishment of rules and routines

  • Demonstrate conflict resolution strategies

  • Help others in need

  • Know own first and last name

  • Name family members and relationships

  • Begin to learn address and phone number

  • Use materials appropriately and put them away

Literacy & Language Development

  • Identify spoken words as same or different

  • Blend, segment, clap syllables

  • Listen for and isolate beginning sounds

  • Match/produce words with same beginning sounds

  • Make predictions and draw conclusions

  • Make connections using illustrations/photos, prior knowledge, real-life experiences

  • Identify sequence of events including recognizing story structure: characters, setting, beginning, middle and end

  • Compare and contrast

  • Show a steady increase in listening and speaking vocabulary

  • Interpret illustrations and simple charts

  • Speak in complete sentences with subject/verb agreement while also experimenting with the use of more complex grammar

  • Make connections between oral language and print

  • Listen to and discuss literary multicultural texts, songs and oral stories

  • Know the order of the alphabet and recite in sequence

  • Recognize capital and lower case letters. Begin to notice the beginning letters in familiar words

  • Use pictures, signs, symbols to represent oral language, ideas, stories

Math

  • Construct and sort solid shapes and forms

  • Reproduce patterns of sound and physical movement

  • Use language associated with time in everyday situations

  • Examine, manipulate, and identify familiar U.S. coins

  • Measure length of objects

  • Construct and sort solid shapes and forms

  • Reproduce patterns of sound and physical movement

  • Use language associated with time in everyday situations

  • Examine, manipulate, and identify familiar U.S. coins

  • Measure length of objects

  • Count by ones to twenty, use ordinal numbers from first to fifth, recognize numerals from 1 to 31 (calendars)

  • Explore the concept of whole and parts

  • Name “how many” are in a group of up to three objects without counting

Science

  • Recognize, identify, and describe changes in

    the environment

  • Recognize primary colors and how to make new ones

  • Use senses to investigate objects, events, and organisms

  • Describe observations including how offspring are similar to their parents, identifying animals and plants

  • Recognize that all living things need water, food and air

  • Identify soil, rock, water, sun, moon, stars

  • Observe weather and how it changes

  • Identify sounds made by objects

  • Explore what things are made of and describe different states of matter

Social Studies

  • Begin to recognize the qualities, interests, skills, traditions, and experiences that make

    people unique

  • Demonstrate positive human attributes, relationships, roles, and social skills

  • Begin to measure calendar time by days, weeks, months and years

  • Recall and explain sequence of events

  • Observe and describe features of natural, human-made, and familiar places

  • Begin to learn important information about his/her immediate area and become aware of symbols in the community

  • Understand roles of community workers

Fine Arts

  • Express feelings through movement

  • Engage in dramatic play with others

  • Combine activities, materials and equipment in new ways

  • Use language as part of dramatic play and “make believe” with objects

  • Dramatize stories, experience, poems, fingerplays, and moods

  • Create more detailed, creative, or realistic artwork

Health & Safety

  • Distinguish left from right; use one side of body at a time

  • Strengthen bilateral coordination, alternate movement of the left and right sides of the body

  • Participate in activities that build left to right visual progression

  • Practice self help with zippers, buttons, etc

  • Develop strength, dexterity and control needed to use tools and materials

  • Coordinate hand/eye movements

  • Develop pincer control in picking up small objects

  • Practice routine healthy behaviors

  • Understand the need for exercise and rest

  • Respond appropriately during fire/emergency drill

  • Knows how to cross a street safely

  • Communicate to another the danger of a behavior