We assess our school environment annually to ensure that we are maintaining an excellent learning opportunity for each child.
Our classrooms are designed very purposefully to include space for large and small group activities in a variety of interest areas. You will notice areas for dramatic play, blocks, art, music, science, discovery, toys, and games. The setup at St. Paul’s Nursery School and Daycare has been reviewed and approved by Keystone STARS.
Big Kids Playground
Big Basement Play Area
Our center is proud to meet the requirements of a Keystone STAR 4 early learning program.
We believe in constructive and purposeful learning through play. Children learn best through a balanced combination of child-directed and teacher-directed activities. We use daily observations of these activities to determine appropriate areas of focus for each child. Every child has particular interests, experiences, and a learning style. Our program serves children aged 18 months to 5 years.
Our school uses the Creative Curriculum for Preschool, an award-winning, fully accredited curriculum aligned with Pennsylvania early learning standards that enables children to develop confidence, creativity, and lifelong critical thinking skills.
18 Months – 2 Years Old
Play and fun are the main emphasis of the day for our active 18-month and 2-year-olds at St. Paul’s. A typical day includes helping the child adjust to separation from parents, indoor and outdoor play, songs and movement to music, short story times, nutritious snacks, and creative artwork.
Our curriculum incorporates activities that help children develop social-emotional skills, such as regulating their own emotions and behaviors; forming relationships with adults and peers; participating cooperatively in a group; developing physical, language, and cognitive skills; and building ability in language, literacy, mathematics, and science.
Preschool (Ages 3, 4, 5)
Our preschool program is more structured, varying active and quiet times to help each child grow in every way. Daily activities include: play indoors and outdoors, computers, nutritious snacks and cooking, stories and language development, music, art, social studies, math, science, and spiritual development.
Pre-school learning is age-appropriate and tailored to meet the needs of the individual child and/or group. If a child is willing and able to pursue more preparation for the future, teachers will modify and individualize the lessons to allow the child to reach his or her personal goals.
Learning objectives include:
- Helping children develop social-emotional skills such as regulating their emotions and behavior; establishing positive relationships; and participating cooperatively and constructively in group situations.
- Helping children demonstrate physical skills (gross and fine motor development).
- Helping children develop language skills through listening and comprehension; using language to express thoughts and needs; and using appropriate communication skills.
- Helping children with cognitive skills (a positive approach to learning; remembering and connecting experiences; classification; and using symbols and images to represent something not present.
- Helping children develop abilities in mathematics; literacy; science; technology; social studies; and the arts.
Days at St. Paul’s include regular sessions of “special” learning that enhance all areas of growth, promoting each child’s creativity and social-emotional, intellectual, and physical development.
Letter recognition and sounding-out skills prepare children for pre-reading.
Experiments deepen children’s grasp of cause-and-effect, the environment, and their bodies.
Balance, strength, and flexibility are promoted through active, fun movement.
An awareness of cooperation and rules is built through guided competition.
While gaining an appreciation of movement and sound, children strengthen their ability to recall.
Our pastor leads stories and songs reflecting Christian values and spirituality.
Children develop fine motor skills through imaginative and practical projects.
Measuring and math merge with social development while preparing snacks.
Self expression and independence are encouraged through creative activities.
Part of our center’s mission is to build our students’ sense of community while inspiring them to learn and helping them build confidence.
St. Paul’s provides a number of events to help students engage with their world. In recent years, events have included an interactive farm visit; presentations by our local fire company, police department, and school buses; performances by musicians and historical storytellers; our annual Christmas program; and field trips to nearby cultural sites like a local playhouse, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and Fairmount Park.
St. Paul’s Nursery School participates in Pennsylvania Keystone STARS (Standards, Training/Professional Development, Assistance, Resources), which provides families with a tool to gauge the quality of early learning programs. The STARS program supports early learning programs in the commitment to continuous quality improvement. Programs that participate in Keystone STARS care about providing quality early learning to your child. As programs move up the STARS ladder, they are providing even higher quality experiences, so your child benefits even more from the program. Early learning programs can earn STAR 1 to a STAR 4 level. At each level, programs have to meet certain research-based quality standards that measure four areas that make a difference in the quality of care your child receives:
- Staff education
- Learning environment
- Leadership management
- Family and community partnerships
St. Paul’s Nursery School has a strong history in providing an excellent learning environment for our children. Our participation in Keystone Stars is helping us to evaluate and enhance the quality of our program. Quality care environments provide a stimulating, loving atmosphere in which children thrive mentally, socially, emotionally, and physically. It encompasses:
- Qualified, dedicated practitioners whose behaviors reflect a belief in the dignity and value of each child
- Strong partnerships between families and practitioners in the care and education of the children
- Best practice in maintain lower than required child-staff ratios and small group learning
- Ongoing family and teacher engagement, education, and communication
- Consistency in care and education through a professional, highly trained group of practitioners
- Quality curriculum and resources to support growth and discovery across all learning areas/domains