Little Stars Preschool Parent’s Information
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Vision: Our vision is to nurture the curiosity in children to help them develop into compassionate independent thinkers who feel a sense of connectedness to their community.
Mission: Using the natural inquisitiveness and interests of each child, our aim is to create a classroom environment to support their development, growth, and preparedness for kindergarten and beyond. Student creativity, curiosity and collaboration is at the core of each day at Little Stars Preschool.
Students will be exposed to a wide variety of educational opportunities that encourage self-expression, communication, logical thinking, and problem-solving.
Classroom Environment: We believe that children are capable of long-term, sustained learning when their interests are engaged. As teachers, we will listen and observe the children closely, ask questions and explore the children’s ideas. We view the environment of our classrooms as the “third teacher” and have therefore thoughtfully designed our rooms with this in mind. We believe that children learn from beautiful, orderly spaces where everything has a purpose and can inspire thoughtful participation and creativity. Our classrooms and our curriculum are designed to allow for collaboration and the ability to work in small groups.
All our classrooms are set up with a STEAM focus (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) as well as a focus on Language and Literacy. As the year progresses at Little Stars, you will see our rooms come to life showcasing our students’ work.
Classroom Schedule and Flow: Our teachers highly regard and consider the natural rhythms of the children both as individuals and in groups to determine when and how to transition throughout the day. This will allow more time to be spent on a topic or activity or play experiences to enrich the time we have with your children. On a beautiful day, being outdoors for a bit longer or the need for more time building with blocks, could lead to a more flexible schedule and design on a given day based on the children’s interests.
A possible schedule for our day may look as follows, with transitions occurring at the most organic, least disruptive times:
- Arrival and welcome
- Outdoor play, exploration, social gathering
- Group meeting time to connect, introduce ideas, topics, materials in the classroom
- Indoor classroom exploration including materials that support fine motor, Math concepts, Literacy, Science and Art
- Snack and story time
- Outdoor classroom exploration with concepts such as Science, nature stewardship, community, Art, gross motor development, Math and Writing.
- Dismissal and goodbye
Our daily schedule will honor the work and engagement of our students. We avoid a bell-time mentality as it can interrupt their exceptional learning. All of our Little Stars Classes will include:
- Gross Motor Play
- Circle Times or Meetings
- Group Questions and Discussions
- Math Exploration
- Science Exploration
- Art and Sensory Explorations
- Story and Snack
- Literacy Exploration
- Writing Exploration
- Fine Motor Skill Building
- Dramatic Play and Narrative Building
- Gross Motor Play
- Dance & Music
- Outdoor Play & Nature Exploration
Communication: We truly value parent collaboration and feedback and welcome parent thoughts and questions! You are our partners in creating the best possible learning environment for your child! Teachers will send out their contact information to their class at the start of the school year. We are happy to communicate with you via phone, text or email. We are also always happy to schedule a time to meet in person to discuss your child.
Additionally, you will receive weekly communications from your child’s teachers via Microsoft Sway newsletter. This will have important information for upcoming events, all classroom communications as well as pictures and a peek into what your children are doing in the classroom each week!
Kindergarten Preparedness: Using the WaKids objectives outlined in the WaKids Gold Standards:
We incorporate guidance in the following areas to ensure that students are prepared for future success:
Social-Emotional: Much of the language we will use in class will be consistent with language used in schools throughout the Snoqualmie Valley, so students are ready to hit the ground running in kindergarten. Topics addressed in small group settings and throughout self-directed play will include:
- Identifying and labeling emotions
- Regulating emotions and behaviors
- Establishing positive relationships
- Participating cooperatively and constructively in group situations
Physical: Each day, we will provide opportunities for fine and gross motor development. Students will have the opportunity for gross motor movement on our studio playset, ride on bikes and toys, climbing wall and tons of other outdoor/indoor play on toys. The new downtown location has three wonderful outdoor classrooms set up for learning and exploration each day.
Language and Literacy: Students will be exposed to a variety of written and oral language expression. Each day, we will experience different storybooks, poetry, and songs. Students will be encouraged to use communication skills to express their thoughts and needs throughout their discovery and also related to text read in class. Using a multi-sensory approach, students will be encouraged to practice writing skills and write their name. In addition, students will be exposed daily to the alphabet and develop phonological awareness.
Mathematics and Science: Students will be invited to rotating math and science centers that foster concepts such as counting, shapes and colors, spatial understanding, numeral recognition, natural world/science observations, open-ended experimentation and question-based models.
Cognitive: We support the broad range of cognitive levels in our students by providing engaging multi-sensory experiences that work toward the following benchmarks:
- Thinking symbolically
- Attending and engaging with a prolonged focus in a variety of areas
- Persisting through challenges
- Labeling, recognizing and recall
- Making connections between concepts and real-world experiences.
Registration: Children who are 2.5 years by August 31st and potty trained up to kindergarten are eligible to enroll in Little Stars Preschool. Admission requirements and procedures are as follows:
- Registration must be done online, and all our forms must be signed.
- Students will be accepted on a first-come, first served basis depending on space availability. Returning students and siblings will have first priority.
- Tuition is due each month on the 1st of the month and will be processed September through June.
- If your child is not fully potty trained, please do not send them to preschool. If your child has an accident, we will have to call you to come and change your child. A student should be able to get their pants on and off and get onto the potty independently. We are not a daycare and therefore are not licensed to diaper kids. Please make sure your child is potty trained before the start of the school year.
Arrival at School: We will open the doors for school at the start time of 8:55 am for the morning classes, at 11:55 for Lunch Bunch arrivals and at 12:55 for afternoon classes. Please park and walk your child up to the door, or the front gate, depending on your location. If you have someone other than yourself picking up your child that day, please let us know at drop-off.
When dropping off at the Ridge location please only use the spots marked 8104 (Big Star) or have no markings at all when you are dropping your child off in the morning. All of the other numbered spots belong to our neighbors. Thank you for helping us with this!
Dismissal from School: Pickup for our morning session begins at 11:55. Lunch Bunch pickup begins at 12:55. Afternoon Enrichment and PM Preschool pickup begins at 3:55.
Please park and meet your child outside the gate or door. We will not release students unless a parent or caregiver is on the sidewalk.
Only adults previously authorized (verbally or written) by guardians will be permitted to pick up students. Please respect this rule, we do not want to be put in an awkward situation and are just trying to keep your kiddos safe.
A late fee of $10 will be charged for late pick-up. If you feel you may be late, please arrange alternative transportation for your child or let your teachers or Big Star staff know of your plans so we can be prepared. Please call (425) 292-3342.
Attendance: If your child will not be attending class, please notify your child’s teacher directly. If you cannot reach them for any reason, please notify us by email: email@example.com or text: 206-779-9337 if possible. You can also call the studio at 425-292-3342.
Clothing: Messy children are learning children! Paint happens! Please dress your child in play clothes and shoes that they can put on and take off themselves. (Velcro is often the best type of shoe!) Please send a coat and/or hat appropriate for the weather to allow an optional outdoor playtime. Also, please write your child’s name in and on all belongings.
For bathroom purposes, please ensure that your child is wearing clothing that they can manage independently. Please pack and label a Ziplock with a spare change of clothes that we will keep at school for accidents. Thank you!
Snack: Parents will be asked to provide a healthy snack for each day at preschool. Because of allergies Little Stars Preschool is a nut-free environment. We want your child to experience the feeling of independence, so please make sure they can open their snack on their own.
Field Trips and Special Events: Our class may have the opportunity to participate in school field trips and special events throughout the year. We will need family and community volunteers to drive and accompany us on these.
Holidays and Birthdays: Little Stars Preschool seeks to celebrate many holidays that are meaningful to our students and our local and global community! These may be honored with art projects, songs, and learning activities. Select holidays will be celebrated with a special all-school party. We may ask for parents to help us make it as special as possible!
Birthdays will be honored with in-class traditions and rituals. These will be created with the unique interests of the class in mind and will quickly become beloved activities to look forward to! For the sake of equity, please do not send favors, gifts or treats on birthdays.
Enrichment: Enrichment is an optional extra three hours to allow for more flexibility in your schedule. If you are interested in having your student stay for Enrichment, please register for the class online.