Early Childhood Education is at the forefront of all parents’ minds when it comes to their child’s brain development. Great Futures Preschool strives to prepare their kids for a variety of activities including emergent reading skills, number and letter recognition, sign language, science and creative arts. With an enriching environment and highly qualified staff, Great Futures Preschool helps build the fundamental social and emotional skills children need for a great future.
Most brain development occurs before a child turns 5, and research shows, can set the course for all future learning. Starting at 2 ½ years, Great Futures Preschool provides a loving, secure environment for a child’s first preschool experience. The separation from parents and the development of a positive bond with the teachers are the primary goals of these classes. The classroom environment is structured to foster the development of the child’s communication and social skills and stimulate them with fine arts and literature to help increase their powers of observation. “Preschool education produces persistent gains on achievement test scores, along with fewer occurrences of grade retention and placement in special education programs. Other long-term benefits of preschool education include increased high school graduation rates and decreased crime and delinquency rates.” (Barnett & Camilli, 2002).
Increasing S.T.E.M. opportunities for our kids is always at the top of our list, and we feel that Great Futures Preschools takes it to the next level by providing Science Club. Starting at age 3, the main focus of this class is it to teach our kids how to make observations, acquire basic science and math vocabulary, and develop a life-long love of science! Topics of motion and friction are covered through different experiments like creating ramps and rolling different sized objects like tennis balls, golf balls and basketballs in the gym, setting off rockets, dropping parachutes, and measuring how far they can jump, helping them understand the importance of metrics. Chemistry is covered as well by making cabbage indicators and testing the PH of different liquids. The teachers of Science Club have an in-depth knowledge of science, which makes for a more enriching experience.
The leader of Science Club, Pauline O’Rourke has worked at Great Futures Preschool since 2004. She enjoys watching the children grow emotionally and socially throughout the year. “It is always a pleasure to work with the wonderful families who are part of the preschool community at the Boys & Girls Club of Bellevue.” Says Pauline.
Pauline grew up in Ireland and started her career in pharmaceutical science. While her children were young, she studied early childhood education. In 1989, Pauline and her husband moved to Bellevue where they have raised their five children. Pauline enjoys gardening, reading and attending her children’s concerts and sports games.
The staff of Great Futures Preschool is inspired everyday by their preschoolers and pride themselves in making sure their kids are fully prepared for kindergarten, the next big milestone in life.