Preschool


Every child is curious, and our goal is to provide a learning environment that nurtures your child’s natural curiosity and wonder.

Beginning with our three- and four-year-olds, students are given opportunities to socialize and play, developing skills to build friendships and grow as valued members in a safe and inclusive community.

The FXW Preschool philosophy is to facilitate learning in developmentally appropriate ways. With teacher guidance, our youngest students delve into a wide range of experiential topics that they then investigate through long-term projects and themes, such as visiting the doctor’s office, going to the grocery store, friendship building and practicing mindfulness.

FXW’s Preschool Program uses NAEYC guidelines and Illinois Early Learning Standards.

We believe in:

  • Play as the foundation for all learning
  • The importance of social and emotional development with an emphasis on relationships, self-regulation, and initiative
  • Nurturing growth mindset and sense of belonging in the community of the classroom
  • Modeling and fostering the development of empathy and compassion to enhance relationships
  • Teaching critical thinking skills through discussing, questioning and exploring
  • Providing choices to foster motivation to learn and to experience the joy of learning
  • Building body awareness by strengthening gross motor and fine motor muscles
  • Supporting the religious and spiritual faith of all children through prayer and music
  • Encouraging self-help skills to build independence and pride
  • Child readiness for learning with sensitivity to individual differences and needs
  • Partnering with parents to establish goals in order to support and nurture children’s development

FXW teachers know that the best learning happens when a lesson sparks children’s interest and strengthens their curiosity and self-motivation. Together, we work to provide an environment that fosters a love of learning that lasts a lifetime.

Continuity of Care Model

Each of our preschool classrooms is led by two co-teachers who follow the Continuity of Care (COC) learning model, which means that children remain in the program with the same teachers and classmates over their two years in preschool.

Our preschool classrooms are comprised of three, four and five-year-olds since mixed-age groupings offer something valuable to everyone involved.

What does Continuity of Care provide for my child?

  • Your child will develop a secure attachment with his/her teachers.
  • This healthy relationship allows your child to play, explore and interact with teachers in a comfortable, stable and predictable setting.
  • Teachers will better understand your child’s needs and background over the course of two years.
  • Your child will be able to establish friendships that deepen over time.
  • Research shows a rise in language development and vocabulary with a decrease in disruptive behaviors for children learning within this model.
  • Time together with peers provides your child opportunities to develop social skills. Children need many experiences in a comfortable atmosphere to relate, communicate, make decisions, and accept responsibility.

How does Continuity of Care benefit me as a parent in the FXW community?

  • You and the teachers develop a healthy parent-teacher partnership.
  • These partnerships allow children to observe the important adults in their lives working together to support their development.
  • You can develop friendships and a strong sense of community with other parents in your classroom as you attend student and school events.

In Preschool, the experience of faith is rooted in the student’s imagination and filled with stories of awe and wonder of God.

Learning Off-Campus

“The FXW teachers and staff put tremendous effort into turning an impossible situation into something that felt possible as a way to end the school year. We will forever be grateful for their dedication to learning and their support of our child during this challenging time.”  – Jen Borchard, Preschool Parent

During Learning off Campus (LoC), FXW strives to provide a virtual learning environment based on research with special consideration for how young students learn and develop. We ask families, to the best of their ability, to follow a predictable schedule, that is flexible and easily managed as a family. Teachers may give a copy of their classroom schedules for reference and students should engage in indoor and outdoor play, LoC activities, regular meal and snack times and rest. Teachers will offer synchronous meetings through MS Teams with small groups throughout the week. FXW uses Seesaw which is a digital portfolio platform to use with students in Preschool through Grade 4 selfcontained classrooms and specials classes.

In preschool, 10-15-minute activities will be provided for each of the following content areas: Gross Motor, Fine Motor, Social Emotional, Early Literacy, and Math.

Teacher Feedback

For students in Preschool, teachers will provide feedback on learning activities throughout the week. Because synchronous experiences will occur at varying times daily, the windows for feedback will vary classroom to classroom.

LoC Activities

Gross Motor

Students are encouraged to move their bodies through sequences of frog hops, windmills, crab kicks, jumping jacks and other specific exercises that promote physical development. The exercises are presented in interactive videos created by teachers in both indoor and outdoor settings.

Social Emotional

Teachers continue building connections with students by saying the school prayer together, The Prayer of St. Francis, and having students share special intentions. Additionally, teachers support students in building self-awareness by reinforcing the routine of core practice, belly breathing and other self-regulation strategies through video and live check-ins.

Math

Students build number sense and early math skills
through activities such as sequencing numbers,
estimation, counting practice, categorizing shapes, and seeing numbers in ten frames. Movement is often incorporated into the math lessons to further engage our youngest learners.

Fine Motor

Students continue building strength and coordination of their hands by engaging in pre-writing tasks such as playdough making, transfer tasks using household materials, letter and number formation and connect-the-dot activities. Teachers share recipes and ensure that all
tasks can be done with a variety of materials available in the home.

Early Literacy

Teachers choose books with rich vocabularies and strong story lines to read either live or in a recorded video. The live sessions provide opportunities for students to share alternative endings or answer questions about the book. The recordings allow students and families to watch on
their own time and revisit a favorite story multiple times. Teachers provide lessons in pre-literacy skills such as rhyming, identifying beginning or ending sounds in words or alphabet activities for students to engage in daily.