Curricular Highlights: Pre-Kindergarten

Literacy

Lake Bluff Elementary School District 65 utilizes a balanced literacy approach. A balanced approach uses a variety of reading, writing and word work instruction, and practice opportunities for students in order to expose them to the rich world of literacy. Students participate in varied activities in the areas of phonemic awareness, letter identification, letter formation and letter sounds. Instruction is guided by Michael Heggerty’s Phonemic Awareness, Handwriting Without Tears, and Jolly Phonics.

Pre-Kindergarten Reading

Pre-Kindergarten Writing

In Reading, Pre-Kindergartners are exposed to stories and texts across genres while they grow their reading identities. They will immerse themselves in:

  • High-interest nonfiction

  • Emergent storybooks

  • Fundamental reading behaviors and strategies

In Writing, Pre-Kindergartners are exposed and introduced to letter formation and beginning writing skills. They will immerse themselves in:

  • Building fine motor strength and accuracy

  • Beginning letter formation

  • Writing their names and CVC words

Mathematics

Mathematics instruction in District 65 provides the opportunity for all students to have a rigorous, engaging, and accessible curriculum which focuses on developing students’ deep understanding of mathematics concepts. In order to achieve this, students engage in a high level of discourse and are exposed to multiple strategies in order to solve complex problems. The backbone of this instruction comes from Bridges Pre-Kindergarten Edition which has been developed by the Math Learning Center after years and years of research in the field of early childhood mathematics instruction.

Pre-Kindergarten Math

In Pre-Kindergarten, students focus on whole numbers and shapes. Throughout the year they:

  • Count and compare numbers to 20, with a special focus on numbers to 10

  • Instantly recognize and name the number of items in sets to 5 or 6

  • Count 10 or more objects with 1-to-1 correspondence and cardinality

  • Identify numerals from 1-10 and write some of them

  • Match sets and numerals to 10

  • Compare sets of objects within 10 using the terms more, less, and same/equal

  • Add and subtract small quantities by using concrete objects and counting all

  • Copy, extend, translate, and create simple repeating patterns

  • Compare objects by size, length, weight, and capacity using terms such as smaller, bigger, shorter, longer, lighter, heavier, and so on

  • Sort objects by color, shape, size, and other attributes

  • Recognize and name circles, triangles, rectangles, and squares

  • Put shapes together to make designs, pictures, and larger shapes

Other Subject Areas

We believe in a well-rounded curricular program and fit as much into the time with our students as possible.  Throughout the time in our pre-kindergarten program, children are exposed to science and social studies topics including those listed below:

Pre-Kindergarten Science

Pre-Kindergarten students explore Physical Science through motion and matter, light and color and magnets and sound.

Pre-Kindergarten students explore Early & Space Science through Earth and water, air and weather, sunlight and shadows and fossils. 

Pre-Kindergarten students explore Life Science through habitats, animals, insects and plants.

Pre-Kindergarten Social Studies

 

In Pre-Kindergarten, students learn to create questions and seek information in order to learn more about topics.
Students focus on key elements of their own social communities by exploring important roles in their immediate world around them.
 

Finally, it is important to point out that pre-kindergarten is an important time for exploring and play for children and our teachers do a fantastic job of helping children to explore this through opportunities in art, music, wellness, and other activities during each week.