Our Curriculum

Our Curriculum

Whether you have a newborn or your little ones are getting ready for school, Luthercare for Kids provides an exciting curriculum that teaches basic learning concepts and social skills. Using the Creative Curriculum teachers provide a daily combination of learning and play through activities and materials geared to the needs and developmental stage of children in the classroom.

Infants through school age will work on age appropriate objectives covering nine areas of development and learning:

  • Social-emotional skills
  • Physical skills including small motor and large motor skills
  • Language
  • Problem solving skills
  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Science and technology
  • Social studies
  • The arts

6 weeks old to 12 months old
Your baby needs a warm, responsive care giver to establish the trusting relationship that will provide them with the confidence they need to explore the world around them. Programming for babies focuses on responding to the individual care routines your baby follows at home, including individual schedules for meals and rest, in order to develop a secure, nurturing relationship with their care givers. When your baby knows they are safe, loved and cared for, they feel secure in exploring their environment around them. Teachers will help to encourage your baby’s confidence by providing a predictable routine and a high level of consistency from one day to the next. Much of your baby’s learning will take place through routine times and everyday activities such as meal times. These everyday interactions are opportunities to bond one-on-one with your baby and to help them develop self-awareness. In the classroom there are a wide range of areas and materials to respond to the many needs of babies at different stages of development. There are mats and other soft surfaces where children can spend “tummy time;” swings and bouncers for babies with good control of their upper bodies; and some open areas and small push toys for those babies who are walking with help. There are many varied toys from rattles and soft books to chunky blocks, shape sorters and pop-up toys. Teachers use puppets, sing, talk about everyday objects, and read to babies while holding them in their lap. Teachers make outdoor time part of their regular routine throughout the year. As your baby explores the environment with an engaged, responsive caregiver close by, he or she learn about their capabilities and move about their world with confidence and curiosity to learn more.

 

Infants will learn to:

  • Form secure relationships with adults
  • Indicate needs and wants, participating in routine times
  • React to other’s emotional expressions
  • Learn to play near other children
  • Use traveling skills to explore environment
  • Learn to use fingers and hands purposefully
  • Show interest in the speech of others
  • Respond to simple verbal requests
  • Vocalize and gesture to communicate
  • Engage in simple back and forth exchanges with others
  • Pay attention to sights and sounds
  • Repeat actions to get similar results
  • React to a problem or unfamiliar situation
  • Learn to explore using senses
  • Recognize familiar people, places & objects
  • Show interest in books

12 months to 24 months & 24 months to 36 months
Your toddler will thrive with a secure routine and safe environment where he or she feels comfortable testing out their growing skills and drive for exploration. While ready for more novelty in their routines, your toddler still does best with a consistent, predictable schedule and care givers. Teachers work to provide this consistency in the classroom schedule while incorporating new experiences and materials. Teachers will respect your toddler’s newly discovered “can do” attitude by encouraging them to explore in a safe environment that has been intentionally designed for children to do things independently but offering your toddler the reassurance and support they require when they need it. Exploring through the five senses and enjoying all forms of language experiences make up the core of the curriculum for this age group. And with a toddler’s drive for independence, learning self-help skills like feeding, hand washing and using the toilet are also integral parts of classroom life. In the toddler classroom you will see more defined learning centers than in the infant classroom including a library area, a block area, a dramatic play area, and places to explore puzzles, science, writing and art materials. A wide variety of materials are placed on shelving at the children’s level to encourage them to explore independently and to learn to care for materials as well. Materials differ in their complexity to ensure toddlers of all ages are appropriately challenged. Toddlers love to test out their growing physical abilities. Daily exercise and outdoor time is offered year round with spaces for gross-motor play where children may dance, tumble, climb, push and ride toys.

Toddlers will learn to:

  • Learn to comfort self with special object or person
  • Learn to follow limits and expectations
  • Develop interest in doing things for self
  • Learn to show concern about other’s feelings
  • Learn to play near other children appropriately
  • Respond appropriately to other’s wants
  • Express feelings during a conflict or problem
  • Grip drawing & writing tools to make marks
  • Identify/name familiar people, animals & objects
  • Follow simple verbal requests without gestures
  • Use 1 to 3 word sentences or phrases
  • Make simple statements about events, people or items that are not present
  • Initiate & attend to brief conversations
  • Use eye contact and pauses when communicating
  • Sustain attention for longer periods of time
  • Explore ways to make something happen
  • Make simple connections
  • Match similar objects or shapes
  • Join in rhyming songs & games; play with sounds
  • Begin to recognize familiar letters around them
  • Show interest in books & interact with the reader
  • Pretend to “read” by naming what is on each page
  • Retell some events from a familiar story
  • Begin to verbally count
  • Demonstrate understanding of one, two, & more
  • Begin to recognize and name a few numerals
  • Follow simple directions (in, on, under, up, down)
  • Make simple comparison between 2 objects
  • Show interest in simple patterns in everyday life

3 to 4 years old & 4 to 5 years old
Your preschool child is busy learning through play and 40 years of research tell us that children learn a great deal through good, constructive play. Programming for this age group takes into consideration this natural way of learning about the world, while working closely with the PA early learning standards in order to ensure your preschooler’s transition to school goes smoothly. Classrooms explore topics of study relevant to the lives of young children that come from the questions raised during their play and interactions. Teachers then work to integrate literacy, math, science, social studies, health, and other concepts into the unit of study, putting it all together into a weekly learning plan with specific activities and experiences to teach the skills your preschooler will need for school. While ready for more organized learning experiences, the majority of children’s learning at this stage of development still takes place through spontaneous, child-directed play in the classroom’s planned learning centers with rich interaction from peers and adults. In the classroom you will see children independently selecting activities from learning areas that include block play, games & manipulatives, dramatic play, sand or water table, science area, library, art, music & movement area, writing centers and in older preschool rooms, a computer area. The room is purposefully designed to encourage children to explore independently, to play with a friend or two, and to work in small groups. Materials varying in complexity are available to address the different skill levels and interests of the children in any group. You will see teachers facilitating the children’s play by circulating throughout the classroom, getting on the child’s level and introducing new vocabulary or concepts, posing questions or suggesting/expanding a course of investigation. Good, constructive play also sets the stage for children to develop the social, emotional and communication skills they will need to be prepared for school entry. Skills such as sharing a space, taking turns with materials, developing responsibility, building self-control, articulating one’s needs and ideas clearly, carefully listening to others speak and responding appropriately to conversation are all intentionally taught through play. With responsive teachers “scaffolding” the play, children are encouraged to take independent action, to try to solve problems on their own or collaboratively, to learn to appropriately care for their personal bodies and classroom space, and to develop an awareness of other’s feelings and needs.

Preschool will learn to:

  • Be comfortable with separations & transitions
  • Identify basic emotions & causes
  • Interact appropriately with 2-3 children
  • Attend to small & large group activities
  • Take turns & initiate sharing of class materials
  • Suggest solutions to classroom problems
  • Hold drawing & writing tools with 3-point finger grip
  • Follow 2 or 3 step directions
  • Describe & tell use of many familiar items
  • Speak to be understood by most people
  • Use complete 4-6 word sentences
  • Tell stories with a logical order & major details
  • Engage in conversations with multiple exchanges
  • Sustain attention on a task and ignore most distractions
  • Plan & pursue variety of challenging tasks
  • Solve problems more strategically
  • Show eagerness to learn about variety of topics
  • Classify items based on differences
  • Label or name drawings and constructions
  • Act out familiar or imaginary scenarios
  • Notice and discriminate rhymes
  • Notice words can begin the same way
  • Recognize printed letters and numerals
  • Use a book appropriately & enjoy being read to
  • Show understanding that text can be read
  • Ask and answer questions about books
  • Write some letters correctly and segments of letters
  • Write to convey ideas and exploring letter-sound relationships
  • Count and connect numerals with their quantities, explore ordinal numbers
  • Identify and describe spatial relationships and shapes
  • Compare and measure (length, height, weight, volume)
  • Identify and complete simple patterns
  • Intentionally use scientific inquiry skills and tools
  • Recognize characteristics of living things
  • Demonstrate knowledge of physical properties of objects and materials
  • Demonstrate increased awareness of the world around us—environment, weather, people, places
  • Explore the visual arts, music, dance and drama

Kindergarten through 12 years old
Your school-ager spends much of their day at school but in the early mornings and afternoons need the security of a safe, predictable environment. Programming for this age group during the year takes into consideration that school age children benefit from a balanced approach to their day, where they have the time and space needed to work on school assignments but also enjoy the company of peers as they pursue hands-on activities and interests. School-agers often have their own interests and ideas about what they would like to learn. Programming for this age group uses the Creative Curriculum as a framework for developing one to two week long units where the group can explore topics that come from the kids’ questions and discoveries. Teachers begin units by identifying what children already know about a topic and then generate questions the kids still have unanswered. Over the course of the unit teachers incorporate arts, crafts, music & movement, games, social studies, drama, literacy, math, science and even cooking into the unit. Your school-ager will thrive in an environment where they can complete homework or use the computer with a caring teacher close by, unwind from a busy day at school or safely play in an environment full of a wide variety of materials, games and activities. While more relaxed then the school day, our program will keep your school-ager engaged and learning year round.

School age children will learn to:

  • Be comfortable with separations & transitions
  • Identify basic emotions & causes
  • Interact appropriately with 2-3 children
  • Attend to small & large group activities
  • Take turns & initiate sharing of class materials
  • Suggest solutions to classroom problems
  • Hold drawing & writing tools with 3-point finger grip
  • Follow 2 or 3 step directions
  • Describe & tell use of many familiar items
  • Speak to be understood by most people
  • Use complete 4-6 word sentences

Summer Programs:
Kindergarten through 12 years old
It is summer and your kids are out of school. Whether you need full time care or are looking for exciting things for your kids to do, we have a program that can meet your needs.