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Early Childhood Education Program Overview
Designed to meet the needs of Lakewood prekindergarten children, the program is available to Lakewood children who meet eligibility criteria. It is an opportunity for children to participate in an Early Childhood experience, which is tailored to meet each student's unique needs and learning style.
The services of the Early Childhood Education Program have been successful in our community since 1990. All of our locations have earned the highest rating of 5 stars from the Ohio Department of Education. The Lakewood Early Childhood Program is funded by the Ohio Department of Education Early Childhood Education grant, U.S. Department of Education Early Childhood Special Education grant, and local funds. The program recruits and admits students of any race, color, disability or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities.
The Lakewood Early Childhood Program is comprised of an integrated classroom format. The integrated classrooms are staffed by an Early Childhood Education teacher, a Special Education teacher and an educational assistant. The program follows the Lakewood City Schools calendar and teaches based upon Ohio's Early Learning and Development Standards. The Essential Domains of School Readiness include:
- Social and Emotional Development
- Physical Well-being and Motor Development
- Approaches Toward Learning
- Language and Literacy Development
- Cognition and General Knowledge
Classes are composed of eligible 3-5-year-old students.
Assessment is ongoing throughout the school year. The first weeks of each school year, specific assessments are used to determine the needs of each student. Students participate in state mandated testing.
Beck Center Partnership
All classrooms benefit from a partnership with Beck Center for the Arts that provides licensed music therapists to visit our classrooms. By engaging in music through singing, moving, and playing instruments, students have fun learning about pre-academic subjects while also developing critical motor, cognitive, emotional, and social skills. Movement to music helps the students develop full body coordination that leads to increased cognitive and motor skills. Students are also better able to relax and focus (self-regulate) after having the opportunity to move around and dance. By participating in group music, students also practice sharing, turn taking, team building, and many other lifelong prosocial skills. A structured plan that is familiar to the students each week encourages positive emotional regulation and a sense of self-confidence and safety in exploring new concepts.