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But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to me;

for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”   Matthew 19:14

The goal of UCC Preschool Academy is to teach to the whole child, which is why we include children’s spiritual development in the early childhood developmental domains. For our classroom curriculum we utilize the “Creative Curriculum.” Additionally, we supplement with the “Orange” curriculum for our faith-based curriculum as well as “Zoo Phonics” for our language arts curriculum.

The five developmental domains that our curriculum is built on include: Cognitive, Social-Emotional, Language, Physical, and Spiritual development. It is through these experiences that we believe children gain vital developmental opportunities where they can continue to grow and learn to their fullest potential.

We know that all children learn differently and at their own pace, therefore we strive to reach each child through multiple learning modes (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, etc.).

Five Developmental Domains:

  • Spiritually We believe that God created all living things and that His Word is the foundation for all of life. We believe that children’s spiritual development and nature are closely related (Roehlkepartain, 2006 & Schein, 2012). The more time children spend with and in nature, they will develop a sense of belonging, a respect for self and others, an awareness and appreciation of the unknown, and opportunities of joy and wonder. These moments cause children to respond to their world with caring, kindness, empathy, and reverence.

  • Cognitive – Our teachers seek to challenge children while being aware that some children need more time to practice skills. Problem solving is critical to helping children develop mathematical understandings. Through problem-solving experiences, children learn that there are a variety of ways to solve a problem, and that a problem can have more than one answer or solution. Some important strategies for promoting children’s problem-solving skills are:

    • Identify routine problem-solving opportunities

    • Use daily activities to reach problem-solving

    • Use open-ended questions and comments

    • Model problem-solving behaviors

  • Language/Communication – When children are introduced to rich vocabulary, they learn the words they will need to read and write. In the Creative Curriculum classroom, children have many opportunities to develop their vocabularies, to listen, and to speak through informal conversations with peers and adults, songs, rhymes, finger plays and movement activities, firsthand experiences and talking about what they are doing, and listening to and talking about books that are read aloud to them.

  • Social/emotional– For optimal learning and development to occur, children need secure consistent relationships with responsive adults who support children socially by helping them develop positive peer relationships. Creative learning activities such as dramatic play, block play, and open-ended art activities provide opportunities for children to build positive relationships with peers.  

Children learn self regulating skills that help them learn to control their  emotions and        behavior and to resist impulses. Children who regulate their emotions positively do better in school and have an easier time getting along with peers. Teachers can support emotional development by supporting, rather than directing play situations.  

Teachers use these strategies to build relationships with children:

*Get to know each child

*Demonstrate respect for children’s ideas and efforts to solve problems-Validate *children’s ideas by acknowledging what they did and how they did it

*Provide learning experiences that are challenging

*Model self-talk that supports children’s thinking

*Observe children purposefully and regularly.

  • Physical – We believe that physical activity both indoors and outdoors is an important part of children’s overall growth. Strengthening children’s core muscles and limbs helps to develop the appropriate posture, which in turn leads to motor development including their fine motor skills which are needed to learn to write properly.



We offer a Christ-centered curriculum called "Orange", as well as the "Creative Curriculum" for preschool. Orange Curriculum is web-based and uses engaging activities to introduce preschool children (birth to 5) to God. The lessons include what is called "First Look" which gives children a first impression of their heavenly Father and the wonder of His love for each one of them. The Creative Curriculum utilizes learning through a balance of child-led and teacher-directed activities to take advantage of children’s natural curiosity and preparation for kindergarten. Hands-on activities and projects encourage thorough understanding by tying learning to memorable events as teachers guide children in exploring their interests as they investigate the world around them. A creative preschool program meets the developmental needs of the children and encourages growth not only in academics, but in social, emotional and spiritual areas as well.


Zoo Phonics

“Zoo Phonics" is a multi-sensory language arts program that uses a kinesthetic, multi-modal approach to learning all aspects of language arts, including vocabulary development and articulation based on phonics and phonemic awareness. Zoo phonics uses animals drawn in the shape of the letters for ease in memory. A related body movement is given for each letter. This concrete approach cements the sounds to the shapes of the letters. Lower case sounds and signals are taught first in our 2.5-3 year old classroom, followed by lower case recognition in our 3-4 year old classrooms and capital letters in our 4-5 year old classrooms.

Gross Motor Development

Outdoor time will be available each day for approximately 30 minutes unless weather does not permit. The outdoor space is designed to encourage large muscle refinement as well as to give the children a chance to explore nature and build on fine motor, language, cognitive, and social skills. Outdoor time will provide children the opportunity to run, climb stairs, ride tricycles, jump, balance on one foot, throw objects overhead, kick balls, build with blocks, use tools, participate in imaginative play, release energy, and participate in relaxation exploration through sensory exploration. Children will be led to the playground area with the help of the teacher and/or the teacher assistant. This ensures each child’s safety while moving from one location to another. In the event of inclement weather, the worship center will be used. This room will be equipped with appropriate toys and activities to stimulate the children and fulfill the large motor play requirement.

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