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Early Childhood

Immaculate Conception-St. Joseph’s early childhood program (Prekindergarten - Kindergarten) is a center-based, NAEYC® accredited, comprehensive program designed to provide the best learning experiences for our youngest students. All activities are appropriate for the age and developmental level of the class. Teachers work with each child to ensure that his/her individual educational and developmental needs are being met, with particular focus on the following objectives:

Physical Development

Visual Perception

Fine Motor Skills

Auditory Perception

Gross Motor Skills

Personal Development

Social Development


Early Childhood Program Highlights


Early Childhood Approach

During the early childhood years, children are building relationships and learning to trust adults and peers outside their families. They gain independence and self-control, take initiative, and assert themselves in socially acceptable ways. Children make sense of the world around them through active involvement with their environment, observing what happens when they interact with people, activities and materials. For these reasons, Immaculate Conception-St. Joseph School uses a center-directed approach to learning. Each fully self-contained classroom provides the appropriate centers for children to further their cognitive and social/emotional development, as well as their fine and gross motor skills and their creative and inquisitive nature. Early education classrooms incorporate play and learning centers that include:

Language Arts




Dramatic Play





A Child's Daily Activities

The daily activities of your child will include a balance of quiet and active play, large group activities, small group activities, and opportunities to play alone or with others.  Each day includes time for self-selected and teacher-directed activities. Children will engage in self-help skills such as toileting, dressing and washing hands, as well as classroom tasks including table-setting and cleaning up.

Early Childhood Curriculum Highlights

  • Handwriting Without Tears®
    • Research-based handwriting program providing multi-sensory and developmentally appropriate tools to teaching handwriting
  • Second Step Social Emotional Program  
    • Helps students harness their energy and potential by teaching them to listen, pay attention, manage their emotions, and be aware of other’s feelings.
    • When students enter kindergarten with the self-regulation and social-emotional skills taught in the research-based Second Step program, they are set up for success.
  • Illinois Early Learning Standards
    • ICSJ faculty plan and implement hands-on and interactive, child-focused lessons throughout the early childhood program  
    • Lessons are student-centered and based on student interest

The early education classrooms are large and bright and they allow ample space for students to move and play freely. All prekindergarten classrooms are equipped with their own water fountains and student restrooms.

ICSJ is proud to have earned our NAEYC Accreditation every year since 2006.