EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
As with any YMCA program, our preschool is grounded in the YMCA mission and program objectives. The YMCA mission is to put Christian Principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.
Y programs, such as early education, are tools the YMCA uses to help children grow in spirit, mind and body. The Greater Marco YMCA has consistently served over 80 children annually at two locations: Tiny Tadpoles (with VPK) at Parkside Elementary and the Greater Marco Family YMCA.
The Creative Curriculum:
The Marco Y’s Early Learning Programs, first, provide a safe learning environment for the children aged 1 to 5; and, second, prepares children for success with Common Core State Standards through a rich collection of resources that help teachers guide all children to be as successful as possible when they enter kindergarten. The program is based on 38 objectives for development and learning, which are fully aligned with the Head Start Child Development and Early Learning Framework and Florida’s early learning standards. The program also supports English language development in a dual language environment.
Children experience the core components of the preschool curriculum through dramatic play, art, discovery, library, music, computers, outdoor activities and in YMCA pools and gyms. The curriculum outlines the six core components and includes two additional components specific to the YMCA.
Literacy: In our program, you’ll see a print-rich environment with a well-stocked library of books and audio. You’ll find staff reading to children, children leafing through books, and adults and children talking about what they are reading.
Mathematics: In our program, you’ll find children using a variety of math-related toys, tools and games. You’ll hear children counting, and observe them manipulating measurements and sorting and classifying collections.
Science: In our program, you’ll see staff talking about the world around them, introducing scientific ideas to children, and responding to and expanding upon children’s observations. Don’t be surprised if you find nature activities happening in the preschool garden or in our forest preserve.
Social Studies: In our program, you’ll find children trying on different roles in the dramatic play corner, and you’ll find children and adults taking responsibility for their environment by recycling.
Art: In our program, you ‘ll find children and adults listening to, moving to and making music, art materials including paints, markers, crayons, clay, paper and glue and young children participating in puppet shows or performing skits or stories they’ve read.
Technology: In our program, you’ll find children using a variety of tools, both for play and for real and you will see children as young as 3 or 4 using a computer.
Healthy Habits: From our Preschool Gardening Initiative to Sports Days, you will find children learning healthy eating and activity habits.
Social, Moral and Spiritual Development: You will find our staff demonstrating, teaching and celebrating our core values of honesty, respect and responsibility.
The Greater Marco Family YMCA Early Learning students talk about what they would like to be when they grow up; dreams that become possible with a well balanced curriculum.
Our professional, dedicated, and highly trained staff is our greatest asset. You will find that our teachers are truly dedicated and focused on providing a nurturing environment with outstanding curriculum activities.
Early Learning / Ages 1-5
Our Early Education program is the largest on Marco Island serving children ages 2 to 5. Tiny Tadpoles at Parkside Elementary serves children 1 to 4 and includes VPK. Children enrolled in our programs receive the highest standard of care and curriculum. Our school-readiness rates are some of the best in state and we are proud of our teachers and staff for continuing to make the YMCA an excellent site for Early Education.