Preschool (5 yrs & Under)
Welcome to Sunshine Preschool
A warm and loving atmosphere sets the tone for Sunshine Preschool, a popular program from the Northbrook Park District that has been enriching children’s lives since 1980. Under the close supervision of experienced instructors, young children gain educational and social skills while enjoying music, art, crafts, cooking, story time, science, sports, theatre and field trips.
Philosophy and Goals
Designed for ages 2-5 years, Sunshine Preschool is a multi-faceted program based on a philosophy of learning through play in a nurturing and supportive environment. The program supplies a rich variety of experiences, along with guidance, creativity and imagination. A low child/teacher ratio allows preschoolers to receive individual attention with the following goals:
- Promoting creative learning
- Fostering friendships and strengthening social skills
- Building positive self-esteem
- Encouraging learning through play and discovery
- Supporting cooperative exploration
- Respecting and appreciating differences
The Sunshine Preschool curriculum uses a thematic approach to learning at all age levels, preparing for the next level of education with the guidance of Illinois standards and benchmarks. Examples of themes are: All about Me, Holidays and Hibernation. Although each classroom uses the same themes, the activities and curriculum focus on the respective ages, benchmarks and standards.
Parents or caregivers attend the first few weeks of class to assist in the separation process. The staff strives to provide an enjoyable and memorable experience for parents and children. By approximately the fourth week, children attend class alone. The goal is to make students feel comfortable and confident, laying the groundwork for them to participate independently. Classes based on play allow children of all abilities to participate in shared activities, yet achieve success and mastery. Instructors work to develop positive self-esteem in an atmosphere in which students’ needs are recognized and met on an individual basis. Ratio: 1:6.
3s and Pre-K 4s
Initially, the focus is on fostering a positive, comforting and nurturing environment. Through a variety of developmentally appropriate activities, teachers facilitate each child’s progress, including language, social/ emotional skills and motor skills related to functioning well in school. Children are encouraged to think independently, be creative and explore. In the process, they develop a love of learning and become prepared for kindergarten. In the classroom, preschoolers enjoy arts and crafts, games, music, show and tell, and storytelling. They experience unstructured play while exploring educational centers, which include a writing center, dramatic play area, sensory tables, and manipulative toys and counters. Structured activities, including circle time, use large and small motor skills, songs, storytelling and theme-related crafts.
Sunshine Preschool is staffed by well-trained teachers who are experienced in early childhood development and education. Their enthusiasm, warmth and understanding help children develop positive attitudes and feelings of self-worth.
A Typical Day
- Welcome and Drop-Off
- Circle Time
- Learning and Play Centers
- Manipulative and Dramatic Play
- Sensory Table
- Writing and Art Center
- Computer Activities (4s)
- Cognitive Games
- Story Time
- Gross Motor Play (Indoors or Out)
- Visits from a Northbrook Librarian
- Music and Movement
- Nature Exploration
Special Classroom Activities
The Leisure Center location provides unique opportunities to enhance the preschool experience. Students are able to watch professional performances in the Northbrook Theatre, cook in the kitchen facility, create art in the ceramics room, and interact with older adults in the Senior Center.
Field Trips and Special Entertainers
Pre-K 4 preschoolers leave the Leisure Center for several well-supervised field trips, usually during the fall and spring; parents will receive information in advance. Unless the trip is within walking distance, parents will drive the children. Several times during the school year, entertainers will visit the classrooms. Previous entertainers include storytellers, firefighters, police, magicians, jugglers and an Olympic athlete.
We welcome and encourage contact between parents and teachers. Let staff know about any changes at home that might affect your child at school. If needed, teachers can meet with parents before or after school. At the end of the school year, parents will receive an evaluation form by email. The Park District welcomes your feedback and suggestions.
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Sunshine Preschool 2017-2018
How to Register:
- 2017-2018 School Year Enrollment opens Saturday, November 19 at the Leisure Center
*First come First Serve basis
- Complete a Registration Form (available at the Leisure Center and online)
- Submit a nonrefundable deposit of $250 Resident
- The balance is due in eight equal installments, beginning on August 15, 2017
|Sunshine Preschool 2016-2017 Registration Information|
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For more information, call Amy Kopecky, Leisure Services Supervisor, at 847-291-2995
Give your child a great start with Sunshine Preschool!