At Deerwood Academy’s St. Johns and Town Center schools, we treasure each child as a unique, special individual. That is why we have tailored the preschool program to provide experiences every day to nurture a lifelong love of learning. In fact, our preschool students achieve exceptional learning readiness as measured by the Florida Department of Education.
As the place Where Learning Comes First, we have specially tailored programs to help each age group learn and grow with loving programs designed for their needs. This begins with the very youngest children and continues through voluntary pre-kindergarten (VPK).
Infants & Toddlers
At this stage, children are interested in exploring the world around them, so our classrooms and outdoor areas provide sensory stimulation in a comforting, safe, and clean environment. Your baby or toddler will immediately feel at ease in our playful atmosphere that is enhanced by colors, mobiles, music, and tactile toys.
Our teachers use the award-winning Innovations curriculum to enhance daily experiences and promote early learning with lessons on shapes, colors, baby signs, rhymes, and songs.
Two-year-olds are moving from the total dependence of babyhood to the greater independence and mobility of preschoolers. Our Twos Program guides each child through the transition from the sensory-motor world of toddlers to an increasingly social world and the onset of symbolic thinking.
Self-directed play, dramatic play in small groups, circle-time, music and dance, art projects, and the beginning of our phonics program are integrated to help children develop during this incredibly curious life stage. Our curriculum also emphasizes honorable values – which are demonstrated in the classroom – and teaching early self-help skills, including potty training.
Three-year-olds are active learners who carefully observe everything that happens around them. They enjoy being challenged to learn new things and are very proud of their accomplishments. Our classrooms are bright and colorful, encouraging children to be creative and enjoy a variety of fun and engaging activities. The children also go outside twice a day to our outdoor play environment.
At this age it is important to prepare the children with the skills they will need in school, including reading, math, and science. Using proven techniques, we help children to recognize letters and numbers and begin writing them. They also begin learning how to use computers with educational software, which helps prepare them to use technology throughout their academic careers. At the core of the curriculum lies well-planned learning centers that allow for child choice and self-directed play, small groups, and supportive teaching designed to ensure future academic success.
Deerwood Academy’s accredited VPK program exceeds the standards set by the state of Florida, and our graduates have a 100% readiness rate for kindergarten and beyond. Our VPK program is designed to help children to develop the skills they need to become good readers and successful students. It includes high literacy standards, strict accountability, substantial instruction periods, small class sizes, and qualified teachers.
In addition to teaching the child valuable academic skills, VPK helps children become familiar with the classroom setting. They learn how to sit and listen quietly at the appropriate time, how to raise their hands and wait their turn before talking, and how to follow the teacher’s directions. Learning these skills in Pre-K helps them be better prepared for kindergarten.
While the main focus of our VPK program is learning and school readiness, there is also plenty of time for fun. Children engage in outdoor activities, extracurricular programs, educational field trips, and more.