In our K-4 classroom at Prince of Peace Catholic School, we value our partnership with parents in building a foundation for their child’s successful entry into full-day Kindergarten the following year.
K-4 students have the opportunity to attend a full day or half day program. Instruction is guided by a teacher and a teacher’s aide with a class size of no larger than 18 children. Prince of Peace K4 is licensed by the Greenville County Department of Social Services (DSS). Families generally choose our program because it offers a modest but rich introduction to academic instruction and skill development for 4-year olds.
Our curriculum offers children a healthy environment balanced between structure and play. The children experience the “structure of school” when they learn, for example, how to stand with other children in line, respond to and follow instructions, work in small groups, sit in circle time, and follow simple classroom rules like raising a hand to speak or waiting patiently for a turn at a task. Throughout, they learn and practice positive social skills with other children in a classroom where courtesy and kindness are modeled.
Such cognitive and social skills are also learned through structured and free (but supervised) play time in the classroom, at recess, while participating in group games, or while working cooperatively in small groups.
From the outset of our school year, we focus on handwriting, letter and letter sound identification, number recognition, colors, shapes, and counting from 1 to 20. We use hands-on activities, music, and learning games to introduce the basic skills children need to prepare for Kindergarten.
We also use the “Happily Ever After” K-4 phonics program authored by the non-profit Rowland Reading Foundation and published by Zaner-Bloser to better prepare our 4-year old students for acquiring age-appropriate language skills that Rowland’s K to 2nd Grade phonics and early childhood reading program offers our students in following years. Learn more about the scope and sequence of our K4 reading readiness program HERE.
Our K4 children also begin the handwriting process with a program published by Handwriting Without Tears called “Get Set for School.” Link here to read more about Why It Works. The program is designed around not just handwriting, but three components that prepare K4 students for full day kindergarten: Readiness and Writing, Language and Literacy, and Numbers and Math. It incorporates a multi-sensory and differentiated approach to learning so that children can learn actively and attentively.
Circle time offers the children an opportunity to think about and organize their thoughts concerning the world around them. For example, we note dates on the calendar or recount the days of the week. We learn about seasons and patterns, or focus on early math skills – all rooted in the children’s day-to-day real life experiences in school or at home.
It is important that our students grow spiritually as well as socially and academically. Students are introduced to prayers and major holy days of our Catholic faith, as well as basic lives of better-known saints or simple stories from Sacred Scripture.
At Prince of Peace Catholic School, our K-4 early childhood education jump starts your child’s learning, so that Kindergarten and after that first grade and the school years to follow become positive growth experiences where the joy of learning (rather than anxiety and trepidation) prevails.