A CREATIVE ENVIRONMENT FOR YOUR CHILD AND YOU
Tom Thumb Parent Participation Preschool is a special place for children and their parents to discover the importance of play, the fun of learning and the joy of being part of a community of families.
Established in 1945, Tom Thumb Preschool has a long history of providing quality care for young children in Dunbar and the surrounding community.
There are presently openings available in the Toddler program and 3/4 Year Old Afternoon class for the 2015/2016 school year.
Tom Thumb is a member of the Council of Parent Participation Preschools in B.C., an umbrella organization that supports and assists preschools in providing a high standard of preschool education.
Our philosophy of working with preschool children focuses on the importance of play. We believe that play is really the cornerstone of quality early childhood programs and that it is through play that children learn about themselves and their world. As teachers and parents, we need to take their play seriously and must provide a safe physical and emotional climate which allows children time to explore, experiment and problem solve. We believe that children learn by “doing”, so that children need lots of hands on, concrete experiences. As children also learn through their senses (touching, hearing, smelling, seeing and tasting) we need to provide experiences which capitalize on this mode of learning. As teachers (and we include parents in this term, as parents are indeed the child’s first and most important teachers) our role is to help facilitate the play environment where children can develop concepts as well as learn how to be independent. Most importantly play allows the child to develop positive relationships with other children and to negotiate his needs.
One of the most important variables in learning is the child’s concept of him/herself as a successful learner. How a child feels about him/herself and his/her capabilities are crucial in developing positive self esteem, which is at the very core of a child’s being. We believe strongly in a “whole child approach”, or that human growth and development are interrelated and intertwined, and that we must look at the strengths and needs in each area of development – physically, socially, emotionally, intellectually and creatively.
Finally, we must realize that each child is unique and special, with different family histories, different learning styles, different temperaments and all of these factors will affect the way we will teach any two children of the same age, in the same class.
Parent Participation Preschools are committed to supporting the parents of the children who attend the school. High quality parent education sessions not only prepare parents for their “Duty days” as classroom assistants, they also support parents with information and ideas for parenting preschoolers.
With Parent Participation Preschools, the parents get actively involved in their child’s new world. Tom Thumb Preschool thrives because of the time and effort parents put into the school.
Approximately once every 3-4 weeks you will be scheduled as a “Duty parent” in your child’s class. On the second Tuesday of each month, you’ll attend a combination business meeting and parent education night. You’ll have a “job” (portfolio) at the school. The jobs vary in terms of time commitment and responsibility.
Click here for more information on parent participation and the role of parents in preschools from the Council of Parent Participation Preschools in BC.
A typical morning consists of:
Parents have an opportunity to talk informally with other parents, develop lasting friendships and many learn about the benefits of parent cooperatives and move into the Three year-old Program the following year. This Two year-old Program makes the move into the Three’s a very smooth transition.
Parents with children at Tom Thumb Preschool attend monthly meetings that consist of a Parent Education session and a Business Meeting.
|Two Year Old Schedule|
|9:00||Duty Parents Arrive for set-up|
|9:30 – 10:25||Free Play|
|10:25 – 10:40||Gradual Snack|
|11:15 – 11:30||Circle Time|
|11:30||Time to leave|
|11:30– 12:00||Duty Parents Assist Teachers|
Most of the children in this program have attended Tom Thumb for at least one year, or two years if they have attended the 2′s Program. They are indeed ready for more challenges and the program changes to meet their ever increasing needs and skills.
Parents and teachers observe and listen very carefully to the children and attempt to pick up on their interests and develop what we call an “emergent curriculum.”
All of the same interest centres such as art, blocks, dramatic play, clay, music etc. are available to the children in this class but often we focus on a particular interest of the children which may last for a couple of weeks to over a month at a time. These interests or projects will evolve or emerge from the children rather than being dictated by the teachers. Examples, of interests in the past have been gardening and flowers, trains, night, fire, puppets etc.
We also try to provide experiences related to the seasonal changes. Field trips in the 4′s are common and they often are related to the current interest. e.g., a trip to a bakery or to a farm, going for a trip on the bus or to the local Dunbar library.
The children make good use of Chaldecott Park which has more space and is more challenging to this age group.
In this program we also have an introductory circle when they first enter the classroom. This is a chance to share news and stories, plans for the day and sing. The 3/4′s class is divided into two groups for a second circle later in the morning which focuses on stories, more conversation and project work.
|Four Year Old Schedule|
|12:40||Duty Parents Arrive|
|1:15-1:45||Outside Play or Gym|
|1:45 – 2:50||Free Play|
|2:50 – 3:00||Clean Up|
|3:00 – 3:15||Story Time|
|3:30 – 4:00||Duty Parents finish Clean up|
Children in the 3/4′s program have a gradual entry in September so that they feel comfortable with separating from their parents and slowly get to know the routines, become familiar with other children in their class and begin to bond with their teachers.
The program is play-based and offers the children a variety of materials and toys and equipment as well as a variety of social experiences. There is an outdoor play yard as well as a gym to use on rainy days.
The 3/4′s Class does not go on field trips until the spring when they begin to do short trips to the local Dunbar library, to Chaldecott Park and walks within the neighborhood.
|Three Year Old Schedule|
|8:45||Duty Parents Arrive|
|9:15 – 9:30||Meeting Time|
|9:30 – 10:40||Free Play|
|10:40 – 10:50||Clean Up Time|
|10:50 – 11:05||Meeting Time|
|11:05– 11:45||Outside Play or Gym|
|11:45 – 12:15||Duty Parents finish Clean up|
General registration is on a first come, first served basis. Please see details below on registration policies, deposits and fees. Please email or check the website for upcoming open houses which will be held in our classroom (3737 West 27th Avenue, St. Philip’s Church) for interested families to learn more about our programs. There are openings presently available in the 2’s and 4’s classes for the 2015/ 2016 school year.
How to Register
Send email to email@example.com . The subject of the email should read “TT registration – 18 month +2s class” (or 3/4 mornings class or 3/4s afternoon class).
The body of the email should contain your child’s name and birthday, parent names, address, phone number and email.
All applicants will receive an email to let them know if they have a spot for 2014-2015 or if they are on the waitlist.
Registration packages will be distributed after receiving the applicable deposit.
Further questions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note places for each up-coming school year are given out as follows:
The Enrollment Chair issues registration packages which consist of a number of important forms. The completed forms are returned to the Enrollment Chair, along with a cheque made payable to Tom Thumb Preschool for the registration fee and the first and last month’s tuition fee. The entire deposit is non-refundable.
Note: The number of registration packages distributed to new families is based on the number of spaces that are available after returning children, siblings and alumni have been registered.
The Enrollment Chair and Enrollment Assistant are responsible for registering all new and returning children into their age specific class and for ensuring that full enrollment is maintained throughout the school year.
For further info, please call 604-222-2550 or email email@example.com.
Once your child is enrolled, not only do you become a member of Tom Thumb, you also become a member of the Council of Parent Participation Preschools (CPPP). The Council is an umbrella organization that supports and assists preschools in providing a high standard of preschool education.
Each month you receive a newsletter from the Council with interesting articles and useful information regarding issues surrounding early childhood education and development.
For more information about the Council, visit their web site at www.cpppreschools.bc.ca