Welcome to the School of Grace Blog!
Welcome to The School of Grace, a parent participatory preschool serving children ages 6 months through 5 years. We are a non-profit program that strives to help each child reach his or her greatest potential. We do this by focusing on who the child is at the moment he/she steps into our school. Each child is welcomed and guided into a classroom that taps into a variety of learning styles and interests. The teachers adapt the classroom throughout the year based on the needs and interests of the children. For example, during one year, the children in the Turtle (Infant/Toddler) Class thoroughly enjoyed dressing up. Every day, someone donned the dresses, hats, boots and shirts, pretending to be many different characters. The following year, no one even approached the dress up center. The teacher removed the clothing and replaced it with puppets, much to the children’s delight. The center continued to encourage creative thinking and role playing, but in a different way that intrigued the current children. Last year the class preferred a store with empty food containers, a cash register, play money and reusable grocery bags replacing the puppets. The changes the teacher made in the dress up center alone reflect the varying developmental levels, needs and interests of the children.
The School of Grace is a parent participatory program. Parents sign up in August to help out in the classroom up to two times a month, depending on the class size and schedule. We call these “Helping Parent” days. The Helping Parent is an extra set of hands whose involvement helps the teachers implement a variety of activities such as reading books to individual children, cooking, multi-media art projects and science exploration, and providing snacks. The parents benefit as they observe what happens in the class, seeing their children excel as they interact with their peers. Other aspects of our parent participatory program are explained during tours.
At The School of Grace, we reserve a space in each classroom for children from refugee families. Over the years, we have enjoyed learning about a variety of cultures, as some of our children have come to us from countries such as Haiti, Burundi, Vietnam, Bhutan and Burma.
We also reserve a space in each classroom for children with special needs. Some of our children have had a seizure disorder, developmental delays, Down’s Syndrome, Spina Bifida, speech/language disorders and hemi-paresis.
As we live, learn and play together we celebrate all of our children, learning from each other and recognizing that our varying gifts, needs and diversity lead us to have both similarities and differences. We are a delightful community of God’s creation.
Fall of 2010 marked the beginning of the 16th year of The School of Grace. The director has been part of the program since its inception. The longevity of the school and the commitment of teachers provide consistency in our program from year to year.
As a mission of Grace Lutheran Church, the preschool enjoys a connection between church and school. Each week, the church’s Associate in Ministry leads an interactive chapel service, inviting the children to learn about God’s love. They also learn that they can have fun in a worship experience!
You are invited to visit our website www.schoolofgrace.com or call the preschool office at 919-787-4740 for more information or to set up a tour.
Upcoming topics: What do we do in Chapel?, Healthy Snacks at School, and How to Encourage Positive Behavior.