Pre-Kindergarten, as the name suggests, is the year prior to Kindergarten for most students. This program is offered two or three days per week for the hours of 9:00am-2:00pm to students who are four and turning five years old. All students will bring a lunch from home, which needs to adhere to the nut-free policy. Since many of these students have already attended preschool for some time, and the foundation has been laid, teachers can continue to scaffold their learning to next levels in all areas of development. Children of this age are much more independent and capable, therefore a class of twenty-two students has one Lead Teacher and an Assistant Teacher, a ratio of 11:1. Their independence is best displayed during Learning Centers, when many of the activities are introduced prior to doing them. Socially and emotionally, teachers will encourage resilience, cooperation and problem-solving among peers. Language skills begin to focus on literacy, as children are now mastering lowercase letters, phonological concepts, decoding strategies and comprehension of text; many will be reading when they leave for Kindergarten! Mathematics and reasoning are also developing rapidly as children have mastered colors and shapes, counting by rote and numerical value, and they begin to understand number and pattern concepts. Teachers can now introduce new ideas in quantity, positional vocabulary and geometric shapes. Goals also include ordinal concepts (including numerical and alphabetical order), awareness of left/right, and reciting personal information (phone number, address and names of family members). Most importantly, students will gain a love for learning with this hands-on approach to independent and cooperative education!