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Learning Centers

The classroom set up is comprised of Learning Centers which include scientific discovery, creative arts, books, manipulatives, blocks, dramatic play and music and movement. Each center's environment and materials are thoughtfully planned and selected to ensure it is stimulating, challenging and developmentally appropriate for all ages. The centers allow children to have choices and to actively explore. Children learn by interacting with their peers, teachers and the varying things in their environment. Each center has a specific aim and with the teacher's guidance, helps the children's emotional, cognitive and physical growth.

Scientific Discovery- The guppy aquarium is a great tool for children to observe living things and learn what they need to grow. Other science tools like scales and magnifying glasses allow children to examine experiment , predict, question and problem solve.

Creative Arts – Through art, children have a means of expressing their ideas and feelings. When a child makes something of their own and feels the pride of ownership they effectively build a strong sense of self. Crayons, markers, safety scissors, glue and paintbrushes are all great tools for mastering fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Children love to talk about their artwork - it gives them practice with language and self-expression.

Book Corner - Just by listening and watching a teacher read Go, Dog, Go! Children become familiar with basic literacy concepts, like reading left to right, and what words and letters are. Sometimes, if you walk by the book corner, you’ll see a child “reading” by turning the pages and narrating what they see – a great precursor to real reading.

Manipulative Area – Legos, puzzles, beads and more! Children improve their fine motor skills, concentration and hand-eye coordination when they play with these toys. Working independently also gives them practice problem-solving.

Sand/Water Table- The tools and toys in this area help teach children to compare and contrast sizes, learn volume, measurement and science concepts like cause and effect. Since there’s no right or wrong with these materials, children feel a sense of success when they play with them.

Block Area – Blocks of various shapes and sizes help children to gain basic math concepts such as size, shape and quantity. While building houses, roads and forts helps children hone their spatial skills. When children build together, they learn cooperation, how to problem-solve and how to accommodate each other’s ideas.

Outdoor and Indoor High Mobile Play- Helps children learn what their bodies can do. Children need to move and experiment to master balance, improve coordination and develop their muscles. Group activities also teach children cooperation and how to resolve conflict.

Dramatic Play- Helps children understand the world around them while stimulating their creative thinking and imagination. Through dramatic play children learn the social and verbal skills needed to take turns, to be cooperative, compromise, solve problems, show empathy and resolve conflict.

Music and Movement - Teachers use music, song and body movement to promote self-expression, listening skills, taking turns, following directions and focusing.

Golden Gate Guppies Preschool • 2426 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94115 • Phone: 415-839-5188 email:

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