Language skills develop rapidly in the preschool year. The average 3- to 4-year-old knows 500-900 words. We read to children daily to increase both receptive and expressive language. Throughout class time, teachers are available for whole group, small group, or one-on-one conversations. They ask what, how, and why questions of each child and offer new words as appropriate to help children better express themselves and minimize frustration. Our new curriculum offers thematic materials that are of high interest to children. They are designed to spark conversations, making learning and sharing fun.
Social & Emotional Learning
Throughout the preschool year, teachers and all Ridge Christian Academy staff will both model and train students in healthy social and emotional behaviors. When students join our preschool classes, every staff member intentionally demonstrates, by careful and appropriate interactions, that we are safe and trustworthy adults. We model kind behaviors such as greeting friends and asking them to play, sharing toys and cleaning up when we are done. Teachers are always right there to capture “teachable moments” and encourage positive interactions. The ultimate goal is that students will form a strong bond with trusted adults and peers and know that they can always ask for help and will be supported.
Large motor skills develop first in young children, followed by small motor skills. At the Academy, we have exciting play areas for young children to practice their large motor skills. In the preschool year we give children many opportunities and many environments to run, hop, balance, climb, crawl, throw, and catch in our beautiful facility. We also give our preschoolers a variety of fun and playful ways to develop fine motor skills. We tear paper, squeeze eye droppers, use tweezers to pick up items, scoop with tools, pour water into containers, peel stickers, roll and cut play dough, and more. Hand strength and fine motor skills are essential preparation for the Pre-K year when students will begin to form letters.
At Ridge Christian Academy, we teach a new thematic unit and a focus letter of the alphabet each week. Each theme is appealing to young children, creating high interest for the week’s study. Some examples include: transportation, butterflies, penguins, pets, robots, camping, space, and zoo. Each day has a special thematic read aloud, a game or large motor activity, and a simple art project. Children will be encouraged to tell what they know, or have learned, about the weekly theme, identify the letter of the week, notice rhymes, and re-tell daily stories. This is a language rich environment.
Preschool math skills are actively developed in our new curriculum. In the course of the year, our students will have multiple opportunities each week to count to 10, identify numbers to 10, count up to 5 items with one-to-once correspondence, sort items by color and size, and demonstrate knowledge of simple positional words such as “on” or “under”.
Science has never been more exciting! At Ridge Christian Academy, we have a dedicated STEM instructor who will encourage children to ask questions and apply the scientific method to experiment, investigate, make observations and draw conclusions about the world God has created.
Music is a joyful form of self-expression. At Ridge Christian Academy, children come together to sing worship songs daily in Assembly. We also have a music teacher on staff to provide weekly in-class experiences in music, rhythm, and simple instruments, ensuring every child receives the exceptional developmental benefits of regular musical instruction.
Developmentally, preschool students are just beginning to understand that there is a world beyond them and their family. Our teachers and staff love to come alongside you in your child’s spiritual development. We sing worship songs at Assembly each day and tell simple Bible stories about Jesus and His love for them in class. We teach every subject from a Biblical worldview, noticing God’s handiwork in the stories, themes, music and art classes we teach. We encourage our preschoolers, by training and by example, to love each other the way Jesus loves us.