Preschool Program

The Stoughton Public Schools welcomes you and your preschooler to a high quality, language enriched, preschool program.  The Jones Early Childhood Center (The Jones ECC) preschool program focuses on the overall development of children ages three through five years old. The Jones ECC is a legally mandated program to educate students starting at age 3 who are determined eligible for special education services.  The district meets the classroom ratios with a balance of peer partners and students with special needs.  All students gain access to the district curriculum at all developmental levels, through actively participating socially, academically, and physically in purposefully designed activities. Students benefit by developing their social skills through play, art projects, stories, songs, games, and outside play. Students have the opportunity to develop their academic skills through the integration of Math, English Language Arts, Science/Technology, and Social Studies curriculums.
Classrooms are staffed with a collaboration of teachers, paraprofessionals, Speech/Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists and other specialized service providers. 

Our Approach
The preschool program uses a thematic-based approach to teaching and learning.  Every few weeks a new topic or theme is introduced. Children learn and explore these topics through art projects, stories, songs, group games and circle time activities.  During the time that your child is in our care, he/she will be encouraged to try new activities, solve problems, participate group activities and express himself/herself creatively.  Children will have the opportunity to develop their independent, cognitive, and social skills.  

Large Group Time is a time during which all children come together to participate in daily calendar and weather activities, story time, singing and learning about the theme of the week. Students participate in Morning Meeting which is part of the Responsive Classroom social development curriculum utilized by the district.   During this time, the children practice sitting at their desk, raising their hands and listening while others speak. 

Small Group Time is designed to allow the teacher the opportunity to work with a smaller number of students to target specific curricular areas, as well as focus on individual educational goals and objectives.  During direct teaching, lessons and materials are prepared that relate to the student’s individual needs. 

Free Play is a time for self-directed play activities in a natural setting under staff supervision.  The children use this time to develop friendships, cooperate, and share with others. The children are encouraged to make choices from a variety of center-based activities which can include sensory table, manipulatives (puzzles, lacing, sorting, etc), building (blocks, Legos), dramatic play (house, babies, dress-up, workbench and cars) and an assortment of other toys and books.

Motor Groups are provided both indoors and outdoors.  Outdoor play consists of playing on the playground with balls, jump ropes, hula-hoops and sidewalk chalk.  This provides children with exercise through running, hopping, skipping, jumping, climbing, and swinging.  Indoor activities may include bean bag toss, group games and creative movement.  This is another area where all facets of the students’ learning are incorporated into one lesson.

Our curriculum is aligned to the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and the Preschool Readiness Guidelines. The curriculum incorporates several programs such as Handwriting Without Tears, Fundations, Social Thinking, Second Step and Responsive Classroom.  Opportunities to experience, practice, and master skills are woven in throughout all activities.  
Individual assessment is provided through on-going data collection, observation, developmental skills checklists, and work samples/portfolios. 
Supplemental activities are provided throughout the year to enhance and enrich the Curriculum.  For example, during Fire Safety month, a Stoughton firefighter comes and speaks with the children about fire safety and shows them a firetruck.

Assistive Technology
All classrooms are equipped with Smartboards which pre-school students are actively engaged in using during Circle Time (calendar, weather, daily message, and songs/finger plays). Students utilize iPads to practice academic skills or develop leisure skills to further develop their use of technology.