About Us – Monticello Christian Academy
Preschool (3 years old)
We offer a variety of options within our preschool program at MCA. Our goal is to introduce children to the school environment. We are sensitive to the fact that children will need time to adjust to a school routine, so we do our best to allow time and grace for that to happen.
Preschool students will learn a variety of academically centered topics including letters, numbers, shapes, colors, spatial concepts, pre-writing skills, basic math skills, etc. We utilize a curriculum called ABC Jesus Loves Me to provide the structure for our school year, and the teachers supplement this curriculum with outside resources as needed. The curriculum also includes one Bible story per week that the children will learn through a variety of methods including reading of various Bible versions, songs, fingerplays, etc. We also emphasize the importance of character development within our preschool program. We feel that children can learn valuable lessons through playing with their peers. We focus on important skills like sharing, kindness, gratitude, expressing needs/wants, forgiveness, selflessness, etc.
Our goal for children at the end of their preschool year is to have children who have a basic understanding of early academic skills, have a beginning understanding of God’s love for them, and have started to learn about treating those around us with kindness and grace.
All the programs at MCA utilize the Conscious Discipline model detailed below. Students will learn the importance of building a school family, prioritize safety for themselves and others, and start to learn appropriate ways to express emotions and feelings.
We hope that by attending preschool at MCA, your child and your family will experience God’s love and that we will work together to begin the work of “training children up in the way they should go” (Proverbs 22:6).
PreK (4 years old)
Children who are enrolled in our PreK program will continue to expand upon the skills that were developed during the preschool year. PreK also uses the ABC Jesus Loves Me Curriculum.
Academically, our goal during the PreK year is to prepare students for kindergarten. This is accomplished in a variety of ways including letter writing, handwriting development, basic math concepts, pre-reading skills, etc. We also focus on fine motor development and gross motor skills. It’s important that we allow the students opportunities to expand these skills and develop new skills for each student. We want to encourage students to reach their potential and we do so in a safe, graceful environment. We understand and prioritize the importance of small class sizes so that each student can receive the individualized attention that they need.
All of our programs are Christ-centered and PreK is no different. Students can expect to learn Bible lessons weekly through song, Bible reading, memory verses, activities, crafts, etc. We hope that by the time students leave PreK they will have a solid understanding of God’s love for each of them as well as a beginning understanding of how we are supposed to live when we know of God’s love for us.
Social-emotional skills are a big focus in PreK. We feel that development of these skills is equally as important to a child’s success in kindergarten. We allow several opportunities each day for play/social based learning. PreK also utilizes the Conscious Discipline model (detailed below) to help children learn about feelings and how to express them in healthy ways.
Our goal for each child when they finish PreK is that they will have a solid foundation of learning and love to allow them success in kindergarten and beyond.
Our kindergarten program at MCA focuses on several academic skills, social-emotional skills, spiritual growth, and service in our community.
We are able to keep the class size small so that students receive individualized attention which promotes growth and confidence. We focus on small group instruction and can tailor teaching plans to meet the needs of each individual child.
Students enrolled in our kindergarten program can expect to learn many academic skills. This foundation of learning will help to prepare them for the rest of their educational journey. We focus on fine motor skills like holding a pencil, scissor skills, and coloring within the lines. Proper letter formation is taught at the beginning of the school year and reinforced throughout the year so that students can develop the skill of neat handwriting. Students will also learn proper writing technique including capitalization, punctuation, and spacing. By the end of the year, students will be able to write simple sentences. Of course, reading is a big focus in kindergarten. We’ll help develop reading skills in the children by ensuring they know all the letters in the alphabet and the sound each letter makes. Once students have established knowledge of all letters and sounds, they’ll learn how to blend them together to make words and eventually read books appropriate to their level of learning. Basic comprehension skills are taught as well so that students can continue their love of reading into first grade and beyond. Students will learn many numerical concepts that will prepare them for further exploration of these mathematical concepts as they continue in their education. In kindergarten, students will learn many skills including how to count and identify numbers 1-100, the proper way to write numbers, simple addition and subtraction, and telling time to the hour and half hour.
A strong Biblical focus is important in all our programs, including kindergarten. In kindergarten students will learn Bible stories in various ways including reading from the Bible, weekly memory verses, hands-on learning by acting stories out with each other, songs, and crafts. We’ll focus heavily on Christian character by teaching and reinforcing throughout the year the concept that we are made in the image of God and we are growing more and more like Jesus each day. In kindergarten, students will have the opportunity to serve our community in various ways. Our students have participated in a variety of service opportunities including a painting/art related service project at the nursing home and a cooking club at the assisted living facility. As a whole, MCA seeks to serve our community in various ways, and we enjoy the opportunity to include our kindergarten students in several of those opportunities.
Of course, social and emotional learning will be a focus in kindergarten as well. Kindergarten utilizes the Conscious Discipline concept to expand each child’s ability to handle and process emotions and express them healthily. Kindergarten students will continue to learn social skills like taking turns, sharing, conflict resolution, and developing friendships.
Discipline is helping a child solve a problem. Punishment is making a child suffer retribution for having a problem. To raise problem solvers focus on solutions, not retributions.L.R. Knost
During the 2018-2019 school year, MCA school staff began the process of training in and implementing a discipline model/curriculum called Conscious Discipline. We continue to learn and implement this program in new ways each month, and plan to continue to do so in the foreseeable future.
Conscious Discipline definition: “Discipline does not equal punishment. It is emotional education: a way of teaching your child to handle her feelings and reminding her how to behave. This is Conscious Discipline. The Page 5 of 6 ultimate goal is to help your child gain self-control. It is making life predictable for your child. They know what to expect and what’s expected of them.”
“Conscious Discipline is a comprehensive classroom management program and a social-emotional curriculum. It is based on current brain research, child development information, and developmentally appropriate practices. Conscious Discipline has been specifically designed to make changes in the lives of adults first. The adults, in turn, change the lives of children. Conscious Discipline is a way or organizing schools and classrooms around the concept of a School Family. Each member of the family—both adult and child—learns the skills needed to successfully manage life tasks such as learning, forming relationships, communicating effectively, being sensitive to others’ needs and getting along with others.”
If you have any further questions, please see the MCA Family Handbook or contact our school administrator, Amber (firstname.lastname@example.org).