Early Childhood

Pre-Kindergarten

St. Ambrose School offers Pre-K3 and Pre-K4 year-old classes; each having a full-time teacher and full-time teacher assistant.  Pre-Kindergarten is a full day, structured, curriculum-based program where the children learn social and academic skills.  Students practice rhyming, identifying shapes, colors, counting, and recognizing numbers and letters.  Pre-K begins a Phonics program learning to sound out words, recognize sight words and identify beginning and ending sounds of words.  Fine motor skills are enhanced by writing letters and words, cutting and pasting and playing with puzzles.  Students also work in Math Centers, Block Centers, Kitchen Centers, Language Centers and Dress-up Centers.  The Everyday Mathematics program is started in Pre-K.  The reading program “Happily Ever After” is also started in Pre-K.  Children in Pre-K3 attend Mass on Holy Days and special occasions, and children in Pre-K4 attend Mass every Wednesday along with the rest of the school. Their daily routine includes a morning snack break, 30 minutes of uninterrupted free play, and a 90 minute nap time. In addition to their core curricular classes they also take the following classes:  Computer, Spanish, Music, PE, Library and Guidance.  The Pre-K4 students have seventh grade church buddies who sit with them during Mass.

Kindergarten

St. Ambrose has two classes of full-day kindergarten, led by a full time teacher and a full time teacher assistant.  Phonics is continued in kindergarten and students are introduced to double phonograms, learn to sound out words, read sight words, and write a complete sentence.  Most students can read by the middle of kindergarten.  Students receive a good understanding of numbers, and are introduced to addition and subtraction with the help of a Math series entitled “Everyday Mathematics”.  This Math program has a very hands-on concept-oriented approach.  The Reading program used is called “Super Kids”. Religion is taught daily and the children attend Mass every Wednesday and sit with an eighth grade student buddy.  Social skills are enhanced, especially through sharing and cooperation.  All children have an afternoon snack/rest break.