Arrival: The preschool day begins with Valet drop off at this convenient Urbandale location. A definite benefit when you have younger children and in inclement weather. Stories, creative attendance activities and Fun and Fit routines energize our brains and bodies for an amazing start to our day!
Gathering time: The whole class is gathered together to start the day. We have greeting songs, introduction of the snack person and parent helpers, a group prayer, and review of the day’s schedule. As we read our theme related book for the day, the children are actively involved with the story through repeated phrases, answering questions, predicting, pair sharing and defining words. It is a fun, interactive literacy experience each day!
Interest Area Time: The children rotate with their small group to 4 rooms of creative and fun hands – on learning experiences. The Interest Areas include: art, painting, science, writing center, STEM experiences, language/literacy, strong hands, sensory tub, Handwriting Without Tears, dramatic play, blocks, music plus fine and large motor activities. Each day the activities in each room provide new opportunities. The children make many independent choices during the 75-90 minute center time. Snack time is also included in this time.
- Two of our four rooms provide a 1 to 4 teacher-child ratio.
- One of these rooms has fun & creative, teacher made concept games that relate with our themes and books. These games teach developmentally appropriate math, language and literacy concepts and skills. The Pre K classes participate in the Handwriting Without Tears program to encourage letter recognition, letter formation and beginning sounds. The younger children are exposed to writing tools and materials to create an interest in writing/drawing and to begin developing those skills.
- The other room provides fun active learning experiences to encourage communication, listening, memory and thinking skills along with phonemic awareness and environmental math.
Small Group time: We have fun group time experiences to encourage social, language, math and thinking skills.
Large Motor time: In our large gym size room we have daily activities to develop large motor strength, coordination and endurance using: balls, balance and core equipment, parachutes, obstacle courses, bean bags, scooter boards, relays, and group games.
Music and Guest Speakers: Songs for fun and faith are enjoyed each day with the guitar and other musical instruments. Devotions, prayer and closing blessings end our day together. Guest speakers come to us to share about the community, safety and animal facts.
Outdoor Play: We have a large outdoor play area in the midst of beautiful trees, flowers and greenery here at Walnut Hills Preschool in Urbandale, very close to West Des Moines and Waukee. In addition to our play equipment we have daily outdoor interest areas. As the children play they can enjoy the antics of the squirrels, chipmunks and birds.
Departure: Valet pick up for your children at the end of the day. Our convenient location serves Urbandale, Waukee, Johnston, West Des Moines, Van Meter and Adel.
Morning Pre K class (which is a 10 hours a week program) has a different schedule on Wednesdays and Fridays. At the beginning of the day there is a 30 minute block of Enrichment activities with Non Fiction literature based discoveries and a wonderful Music curriculum to introduce rhythmic notes with balls, drums, rhythm instruments, glockenspiels and much more. Center and small group time is also extended.