links

The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you will go. -Dr. Seuss

 

   Dr. Seuss

WELCOME TO THE MUSTANG FAMILY!

Welcome to Westfall Preschool! For many of you, this will be your child’s first school experience and we are ecstatic that you have chosen Westfall Preschool.  Each fall, we look forward to an amazing year.  A year that is explicitly designed to promote and enhance your child’s growth and development.  This year shall be filled with discovery and joy as your child works and plays in an environment that is warm, safe, and challenging.    

The structure of our daily activities is planned to help promote independence, self-confidence, and cooperation through large groups, small groups, and one on one activities. Westfall Preschool staff provide hands-on, interactive experiences that enhance your child’s growth and development.  The activities incorporate instruction and reinforce skills in the areas of language, reading readiness, math, writing, science, social studies, art, fine and gross motor, and social/emotional.  Your child will socialize with other children, develop more independence for themselves, and how to independently solve challenging situations. 

The preschool staff looks forward to developing teamwork with you for your child.   Research shows that when children attend a high-quality preschool program, they will develop social and emotional skills, pre-reading skills, rich vocabulary, and strong basic math skills.   We believe and have witnessed, how communication between home and school affects a child’s success.  An effective parent/teacher relationship is essential to a child’s development of a love for learning. You are encouraged to contact your child’s teacher if you have any questions or concerns at any time.  I look forward to a wonderful year!!

Welcome, 

Mrs. Talea McGinnis
Teacher/Preschool Coordinator
talea.mcginnis@westfallschools.com
740-986-4008  ext 6120

OUR PHILOSOPHY

The philosophy of our preschool program is to provide a developmentally appropriate program for young children that fosters the whole child concept, respects each child as an individual, and stimulates the child’s natural interest in, and enjoyment of learning.  

Our long-term program goals include developing children who:

  • become creative, independent thinkers;

  • feel competent, productive, and self-reliant, as well as foster good self-esteem and sense of self-worth;

  • develop a sense of responsibility for their own mental and physical health;

  • understand that they are a part of a diverse, multicultural community and their actions influence the community;

  • foster the value of linguistic, logical/mathematical, musical, physical, spatial, and personal intelligence and their importance in our community;

  • the development of higher moral reasoning, children developing an internalized code of ethics and principles;

  • prepare for Kindergarten and their future education.

Our daily classroom practices, curriculum, and program objectives are designed to support an educational philosophy that is supported also by parents involved in the program.

We respect and believe in each child as a unique individual with the ability to construct knowledge about themselves, others, and the world around them through active learning. Our goal is to help foster the development of young children's creative thinking skills by giving them meaningful opportunities using play to experiment, explore, and discover.

PROGRAM OVERVIEW

At Westfall Elementary we offer three preschool programs.

  1. ½ day Early Childhood Program for students with special needs and peer models

  2. ½ day Early Childhood Program for income eligible peer models

  3. ½  day Early Childhood Program for income eligible peer models through HeadStart

Program #1:
½ Day Early Childhood Classroom (for students with special needs and peer role models)
 

Preschool students with special needs and peer role models participate in our center-based classroom for 3 hours and 20 minutes four days per week (Mon-Thur) during an AM session. The preschool classroom is staffed with a dual licensed  Early Childhood- Intervention Specialist as well as a minimum of one teaching assistant. Additional classroom assistants may be assigned when the needs of the students necessitate additional staffing. Speech-language therapists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists are assigned to the classroom as specified by an Individualized Education Program (IEP).

All school districts are required to provide services for students with disabilities who are three to five years of age.  Specialized instruction and Intervention services are provided for each child in accordance with a team-developed Individualized Education Program (IEP). Related services include speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and transportation. Eligibility for the Special Education Preschool Program requires that children:  

  • Are three to five years of age and not yet compulsory school age

  • Qualify under the Federal/State Department of Education eligible disability

RESEARCH SUPPORTS THE BENEFITS OF AN INCLUSIVE SETTING FOR BOTH STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS AND PEER MODELS.

Children learn through observation and modeling from others. As children observe and interact, peer models, are providing age-appropriate skills in social, behavior, play, speech, language, and motor development.  

Many benefits from the program:

  • Peers have opportunities to interact. Children learn compassion, tolerance, empathy, and acceptance/celebration of differences and similarities.  

  • Teachers are trained to be responsive to the individual abilities and interests of all children. Differentiation of abilities and development; appreciation and consideration of designing age-appropriate learning activities for students.  

  • Class sizes are smaller, with lower student-to-teacher ratios than the school-age classrooms. PreK classrooms are staffed with a minimum of one teacher and one assistant. Depending upon the needs of the students in the classroom, additional assistants shall be added to support student development. Our early childhood options for peer models can serve up to a total of 16 students.

Program #2:
 ½ day Early Childhood Classroom for Income Eligible Students

The majority of students in this classroom do not have an Individualized Education Plan; however, some students with related services are placed in this classroom.  This classroom is held four days per week (Mon-Thur) for 3 hours and 20 minutes during an AM or PM session. There can be up to 24 children in the classroom, 16 of the students must be eligible for the Early Childhood Education grant. The preschool classroom is staffed with a dual licensed  Early Childhood- Intervention Specialist and a minimum of one teaching assistant. Additional classroom assistants may be assigned when the needs of the students in that room necessitate additional staffing.

Program #3:
½ day Early Childhood Classroom for Income Eligible Students offered through HeadStart

Head Start is operated locally by Pickaway County Community Action Org, Inc. (PICCA) to provide preschool experiences to children ages three (3) to five (5).  Head Start operates a developmentally appropriate classroom in accordance with the Head Start Performance Standards and the Ohio Early Learning Content Standards.  Children are encouraged to explore, create, problem solve and make choices throughout the day.  School readiness goals for children and the program also include goals in five domains: physical well-being and motor development, social-emotional development, approaches to learning, cognitive development, and language development.

WHAT DO WE DO IN PRESCHOOL?

Westfall Local Schools follow the Ohio Department of Education Early Learning and Development Standards curriculum. This curriculum measures progress in six areas: fine motor, gross motor, cognitive, adaptive, social-communication, and communication development.  The preschool's prepared environment of active play is designed to stimulate and challenge various developmental levels.

DEVELOPMENTALLY APPROPRIATE ACTIVITIES THAT CHILDREN PARTICIPATE IN:

  • Literacy development helps children build an understanding of language and literature. It includes listening, speaking, reading, and writing activities. These activities help build skills in areas such as communication, vocabulary, letter recognition, and comprehension. Storytime is designed to help preschoolers develop an appreciation and enjoyment of literature.
     

  • Math activities include hands-on and real-life experiences. These activities also help youngsters develop an awareness of numbers, geometry, patterns, measurement, and graphs.
     

  • Manipulative activities help students improve visual perception, hand-­‐eye coordination, as well as problem-solving and social skills.
     

  • Circle time is a group gathering during which the day’s plans, ideas, and observations are shared. Circle activities are designed to stimulate thinking, enrich social skills, and expand attention span.
     

  • Art activities help preschoolers creatively express their thoughts and feelings. It also helps reinforce fine motor skills and concept development in areas such as colors, shapes, and size relationships.
     

  • Dramatic play activities help children express themselves, practice life skills, improve social skills, increase self-­‐esteem, build vocabulary, and solve problems. Dramatic play is just plain FUN!
     

  • Music activities promote listening skills, creative expression, and social skills. In music, children can explore sound, volume, tempo, and rhythm.
     

  • Science activities offer children many hands-on opportunities for observation, exploration, investigation, making predictions, and experimentation.
     

  • Sand and water activities allow preschools to experiment with textures and the properties of different substances. These activities also promote the development of other skills such as math, science, and language.
     

  • Block play gives children experience with many different concepts such as shape and size discrimination, spatial relationships, number skills, balance, organization, cause and effect, and classification. Cooperative play skills, problem-solving, and creativity are also promoted in block play.
     

  • Gross motor activities give children the opportunity to use their muscles as well as their imaginations as they engage in fun, healthy exercises such as running, jumping, and climbing.
     

  • Fine motor activities help improve small muscle development and hand-eye coordination. Some common items that can be used in developing these skills include puzzles, laces, pegboards, and crayons.