Smart Start – Preschool
The Smart Start/All Stars Programis a state licensed, full service childcare program, providing care for children, six weeks to twelve years of age, located at the PCDC Tri Rivers Center.The program offers: Developmental Preschool/Pre-Kindergarten classes, Full Time Care, Part Time Care and School Age Care, Monday through Friday, from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The Smart Start Program includes the infant, toddler, preschool, and pre-kindergarten classes. The All Stars Program is for school age children. Natural Learning Environment: Both the indoor and outdoor learning environment are designed with naturalscapes in mind.Our developmentally appropriate environments have a comfortable, home-like atmosphere that provides various places for the children to explore and supporting all of the functional areas such as gross motor, early literacy development, symbolic play, manipulative play and sensory play.Our indoor and outdoor environments are designed to be flexible enough to support children’s varying developmental abilities and individual interests.
Our Educational Philosophy
Our program promotes the development of the “whole” child using a developmental education approach. Children’s physical, social, psychological, and intellectual growth are encouraged, and an effort is made to achieve a balance of growth in these four areas. Our developmental program also recognizes that children develop according to their own unique timetables and children are encouraged to proceed at their own rate. Forced “acceleration” of development is not promoted, yet children are encouraged to move to higher conceptual and skill levels when ready to do so. Developmental education is activity based; little “passive” learning takes place.Children learn by doing, and they are encouraged to interact with their environment. A developmental program provides a responsive, stimulating environment that includes a variety of concrete learning materials and toys, a wide range of daily activities, and warm responsive adults who guide children through appropriate learning experiences. Play is an important element of a developmental program, for play is recognized as a way that children act upon their environment, becoming more effective in their actions, and receiving personal satisfaction. Our developmental program also encourages children to interact with adults and peers. Silence is not golden! Through interaction with others, children clarify their thoughts and perceptions, build language and social skills, and experience the satisfaction, which is derived from working cooperatively with others. Finally, as they participate in a developmental program, children are supported in their efforts to make decisions, to think creatively, and to solve problems. They are encouraged to become confident, competent individuals for whom learning is an exciting, lifelong process.