Park Center Preschool Enhancements
Park Center Preschool was the recipient of the new annual Judy Beck Grant. This grant honors the memory and legacy of longtime Park Board Commissioner, Judy Beck, who was a dedicated environmentalist and fierce advocate for preservation of landmarks and women’s rights. This grant is available to nonprofit groups or individuals with projects focusing on environmental conservation and sustainability, community engagement or youth development. With the money awarded, staff and children were very excited to make classrooms more interactive with hands-on-learning to accommodate our STEAM program (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics).
Children created a splatter-painted STEAM bookcase to hold all our current and new books purchased with the grant. The children took turns splattering paint of one color, letting it dry then returning in subsequent days to add more color and finishing with a colorful masterpiece! The bookcase is located in our preschool wing where teachers can borrow and use the books in their classrooms.
Two engineer kits have been incorporated into curriculum providing children the opportunity to use critical thinking skills to build and problem solve. Children can choose to use activity cards, included with the kits, or use their own imagination.
Our new portable light table enables children investigate light with see through manipulatives such as magna tiles or Lego light blocks. This table is rotated to each classroom so all can enjoy! Another traveling item is our science cart, which the Preschool Directors create science related hands on activities for exploration and experimentation, before it is delivered to the classrooms. We look forward to changing it often to include new science activities.
Looking ahead to the 2021/2022 school year are eager to introduce biology to our students when we use new equipment to hatch chicks in our classroom. We can’t wait!