A Typical Preschool Readiness Day
7:40-8:45 Arrival/ Welcome/ Free Play
8:45-9:00 Circle Time
9:00-9:30 Small Group Learning
9:30-10:00Enrichments: Math (Monday), French (Tuesday & Thursday), Library
(Wednesday), Cooking (Friday)
10:15-10:35 Music with Mrs. Davis
10:35-11:30 Outside Play
11:30-12:00 Closing Circle
Transition to Carpool Pickup or Extended Day
12:00-12:20 Outside Play
1:00-2:30 Rest Time
2:30-3:00 Clean-Up/Center Exploration
Transition to Carpool Pickup or Extended Day
Play is the underpinning foundation of all learning in preschool.
Teachers set up an environment of purposeful learning centers and
activities. For young children, play is their work. Each Readiness class
is taught by a certified early childhood teacher and an assistant.
Additional certified specialists instruct students in music and French.
Art, physical education, and technology experiences are offered daily in
the classroom, in the courtyard, and on the playground. Music, French,
and math specialists work with teachers and students to enrich the
learning experience. There is a half day or full day option with carpool
pickups at noon and 3:00 p.m. The Southfield Extended Day program is
available until 5:30 p.m. and early drop-off is available beginning at
7:30 a.m. Readiness students who use the Extended Day Program remain
with familiar teachers and friends. They continue the Readiness
experience throughout the afternoon.
The Readiness Language Arts program expands upon the goals of the
curriculum and includes instruction in all areas of communication:
listening, speaking, writing and reading. Children develop an interest
in and curiosity for reading and enjoy practicing skills needed for both
oral and written communication. Children hear stories many times daily
and participate in varied writing experiences, as well as contributing
to classroom language experience books. Weekly library time is part of
the Readiness experience. The reading readiness program, “Happily Ever After,” part of the Rowland Reading Program, teaches early literacy skills
through a hands-on approach.
Readiness classes use the preschool component of the school-wide
University of Chicago Everyday Math Curriculum. It provides an
age-appropriate, exciting, and hands-on introduction to mathematical
skills in numeration, operations, patterns, functions, geometry,
measurement, money, clocks, and data collection. In addtion to classroom
instruction a Southfield Math Specialist visits classrooms weekly to
provide engaging and challenging math activities for students. She also
teaches students in whole group and small group settings and provides
The Readiness Science curriculum evolves from the curiosity of young
children and develops from the integration of science concepts with
units or themes of study in other subject areas. Teachers encourage
children to learn by discovery, experimentation, and using their senses.
Children explore concepts such as magnetism, temperature, states of
matter, health, weather, and plant and animal life.
The Readiness Social Studies curriculum focuses on the study of one’s self, the family, and the world around them. Thematic units
incorporate art, music, drama, and cooking to provide fun and meaningful
experiences. Children prepare and act out the First Thanksgiving Feast,
study Native Americans, construct Pueblo villages, and enjoy rotating
dramatic play areas in their classrooms. They participate in monthly
school-wide Flag Ceremonies and the Southfield Civilization Fair.
Technology is applied to learning in the Readiness classrooms partly
through the student use of science equipment such as balances, magnets,
and scales. Children also use multimedia equipment such as audio players
as well as iPads. Use of passive media such as television and DVDs is
extremely rare and limited to developmentally appropriate programming.
Teachers are purposeful with technology experiences and encourage
children to enjoy these opportunities with friends so that they build
both cognitive and social skills.
Readiness children visit a certified music specialist each day and
enjoy opportunities to learn about a variety of forms of music in a
program that nurtures creativity, expression of feelings, self-esteem,
and the ability to cooperate with others. Their musical experience
includes singing, movement, playing instruments, folk dance, listening
skills, and music appreciation. The program integrates music and
classroom instruction to support primary curriculum themes.
Additionally, the school’s orchestra director visits the classes for a “composer of the month” study of classical composers.
Readiness students use classroom centers and experiences to explore
dramatic roles in play and learn cooperation skills. Children
participate in holiday programs and in the school-wide Civilization
Fair. In May, their year culminates with a traditional Maypole
performance which blends music, dance, and poetry recitation.
Readiness students receive instruction in French twice weekly from a
certified French teacher. This content-based program centers upon the
use of stories and music as contexts for language acquisition. Children
learn greetings, responses, simple commands, weather words, and other
basic conversational French.
Art in the Readiness classrooms is integrated into every curriculum
area and focuses more on process than product. Children delight in a
variety of artful experiences each day involving varied media such as
tempera, watercolor, clay, dough, glue, paper, and markers. They
experiment with forms of collage, drawing, printing, and construction.
Immersion in the art experience through hands-on activities develops
improved motor skills, enthusiasm, and an appreciation for art.
Physical Education for the Readiness child is on-going throughout each
school day. Children develop motor ability and skills of cooperation
during daily outdoor play times, in courtyard play, in music-movement
activities, and in daily classroom activities designed to promote
balance, flexibility, endurance, and small motor strength. Children are
enthusiastic as they develop competence in motor ability, fitness, and
personal social interaction.