Sonshine ELC utilizes several curriculums in our work with children. We believe a blanket curriculum used in every classroom is not the best way to serve the children in our care. By providing several different curriculums and utilizing play based and emergent curriculum we are better able to meet children where they are at, engage them in a way that is beneficial to them and be flexible to the ever changing needs of each classroom.
Some of the curriculums utilized are:
Emergent Curriculum is more of a philosophy that we have adopted here at Sonshine rooted in the work of early childhood theorists such as Dewey, Piaget, and Vygotsky. It provides a way of planning children’s curriculum to be responsive to their interests which allows teachers to create meaningful learning experiences. Instead of weekly or monthly themes set by teachers, studies that evolve can be days or months long and led by the classroom as a whole. When children are interested in what they are learning about they are more engaged and able to make learning connections on a deeper level.
Handwriting Without Tears is a unique program designed to teach children the basic building blocks of writing and letter forms. The focus is placed on learning good writing habits like starting at the top and moving left to right instead of perfect form. The order in which the letters are taught encourages success as well, moving from simple capital letters to more complicated ones before introducing lowercase forms. Sonshine loves the way Handwriting Without Tears meets each child where they are at developmentally and allows them to feel successful as they grow in their writing skills. Handwriting Without Tears® | Learning Without Tears® (lwtears.com)
Second Step is a social emotional curriculum that relies heavily on puppets, picture cues and social stories to help children learn to identify and respond to their emotions and those of their peers as well as gain skills to help them be successful in social interactions and learning activities. Early Learning Curriculum | PreK SEL | Second Step
Sanford and Harmony is another social emotional curriculum that relies on the experiences of Z, an alien who crash lands on Earth and is trying to learn about how a group of children build relationships, learn to engage in productive ways and discover what makes them unique. Harmony SEL
Chapel: All of our ELC students attend chapel alongside our elementary school students. This gives them a chance to learn about God and the Bible through music and interactive stories.
Music: In music class, the students have the opportunity to explore their creative side as we sing, dance, and play instruments.
Library: Once a week our students attend Sonshine’s school library. Our Librarian Mrs. Johnson teaches the students the importance of reading and caring for books. She reads fun and interactive stories, and the children love trying to guess what is in her “mystery box” each week. The students are even allowed to check out books to be kept in their classrooms.
Welcome to Preschool!
We serve children 36 months through 5 years of age. Our preschool classroom is a dynamic and ever changing space that fosters social interactions and supports independence. Children engage in more in depth biblical studies and participate in several extra curricular activities. These include chapel during the school year,and library visits. Children also participate in daily whole group and large group learning activities, gross motor and outdoor play, free choice activities, art, science and much more.
Pre K Classroom Schedule
7:30 Good Morning/Breakfast (Kitchen and Blocks closed)
8:45 Morning Meeting
10:00 AM Snack
10:20 Free Play
11:40 Whole Group/Wash for Lunch
12:30 Clean up and get ready for nap
12:45 Nap Time
2:20 Quite Table Toys
2:50 wash hands for snack
3:00 PM Snack
3:30 Outside Time
4:30 Combine with Toddlers
Welcome to Toddlers!
We serve children 18 months through 36 months of age. Our toddlers enjoy a flexible age appropriate environment that supports their budding independence. The toddler classroom follows a basic daily schedule, but staff adapt it to meet the daily needs of the children in the room. Activities include gross motor and outdoor play, art and other fine motor activities, whole group story times and biblical learning, sensory play, free choice activities and much more.
8:00- 8:30 Free Play
8:30- 9:00 Music and Movement/Gross Motor
9:00- 9:30 Outside Play
9:30- 9:50 Handwashing/Snack
9:50-10:00 Clean up/Diapers
11:00-11:40 Outside Play
12:20-12:40 Clean up/Diapers
12:40- 3:00 Nap
3:00- 3:30 Diapers/Handwashing/Snack
3:30- 4:30 Outdoor Play
4:30- 6:00 Free Play/Closing
4:30- Combine with Preschool/Pre-K
We are in the process of completing a major building project and plan to open our new Early Learning Center by the beginning of the year. An exciting part of the Early Learning Center will be an infant wobbler split classroom. The room will be divided by a low barrier wall with a gate between the two classrooms.
Why a split classroom?
Each side will be able to serve children 1 month to 2 years of age giving us a lot of flexibility to meet the needs of our community (expanding infant services when needed).
Split classrooms for young children allow for a more fluid and comfortable transition from one space and set of familiar caregivers to another. Infants will hear and see the other side regularly providing lots of chances for small moments of engagement with the wobbler teachers and future peers. As a child gets closer to transitioning, they have easy access to visit the new classroom and return to their safe space just as easily.
Split classrooms allow us to tailor each child’s transition plan to their unique developmental and emotional needs. The move from infants to wobblers is a big transition for families and children and the more flexibility we have the smoother and more positive the experience for everyone involved.