Presidio Knolls Preschool Program

Introduction

Watch a day in the life of a PKS Preschool student.

Our Reggio Emilia-inspired preschool program is steeped in the principles of our progressive mission. We believe children are full of curiosity and creativity, and our curriculum, which emerges from children’s ideas, thoughts, and observations, is designed to cultivate a lifelong passion for learning and exploration.  

Through projects, song, dance, play, art, field trips, and inquiry-based learning, our students develop a firm foundation for elementary school and life: independence, social-emotional skills, problem-solving and critical thinking, early literacy and numeracy, and strong Mandarin comprehension. The role of the teacher is to be a partner in this discovery and learning, allowing students’ passions and interests to guide the course of the lessons and projects.

Each class is composed of both native Mandarin speakers and those who only speak English or another language at home, but the immersive experience ensures that all students have basic Mandarin skills by the end of their first year.

The preschool is everything we could hope for - our daughter absolutely loves it and we love the community. The teachers, in particular, are just amazing. Their compassion is evident through all of our interactions - we feel like our daughter gets so much attention and guidance.
— PKS Parent

Program at a Glance

 
 Early drop-off begins at 7:30am, and aftercare is available for all preschool students on most school days through 6:00pm.

Early drop-off begins at 7:30am, and aftercare is available for all preschool students on most school days through 6:00pm.

 

Reggio Emilia-Inspired Preschool Learning

Our preschool program is Reggio Emilia-inspired, with a central goal to cultivate within children a lifelong passion for learning and exploration. The pillars of our early childhood program include:

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An image of the child as a strong, capable protagonist in his or her own learning. 

We see each child as competent and full of potential. We try to understand and bring out the child’s viewpoint and abilities.

The centrality of expressive arts in learning. 

We give children the opportunity to observe and experience their world in many different ways, and we encourage them to use all their senses. We value each child’s capacity to communicate through “the one hundred languages” such as music, painting, drawing, art, clay, collage, imaginative play, movement, dance, friendship, poetry, and song-writing.

Education as a continuous interaction, exchange, and collaboration among teachers, children, and parents. 

Children and teachers are encouraged to dialogue, critique, compare, negotiate, hypothesize, and problem-solve in groups. Multiple perspectives promote a sense of belonging to a group as well as the uniqueness of self. The role of the teacher is to observe, document, and reflect on the children’s actions and interactions, and to be partners of discovery and learning, together with the children.

An emergent curriculum that builds upon the interests of children.

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Topics for study emerge from children's discussions and interests. Our teachers work together with the children to formulate possible directions a project may take, what materials are needed, the ways in which the group will research the topic, and the representational media that will be used to represent the work. Projects may last a few weeks or can continue throughout the school year.

We encourage you to learn more from the North American Reggio Emilia Alliance

Preparing for Elementary School

Our preschool children see the “big kids” in action on the playground every day, and are excited to move on to kindergarten after completing preschool at PKS. In order to ensure that children will be successful in kindergarten, we work hard to get a clear picture of their readiness skills through individual assessments and observations. We develop concrete growth and support plans together with parents if necessary, and provide many opportunities for children to become familiar with the kindergarten program. As we move into Spring of the third year of preschool, students take “field trips” to elementary classrooms and are given meaningful opportunities to interact with elementary school students.