Taking Care of our Youngest Students

PreK-B Halloween PhotoOne of the earliest priorities in our current construction project was moving the lower school art room so that the PreK-B classroom could have that wonderful space near the entrance to the Lower School.

PreK-B Under Construction
Early stages of the lower school art room being transformed into the PreK-B classroom

The concept was simple: have both pre-kindergarten classrooms close together in the same hallway with kindergarten and right inside the lower school dropoff/pickup entrance. Also, the former PreK-B room that was shared with the after-school program would become a space reimagined specifically for our CASE program.

For the two PreK-B teachers, Alicia Crain and Sarah Hansen, this location change has created quite a transition.

“Alicia and I were approached last spring about the relocation of our classroom from the shared space of the CASE room to what, at that time, was Mr. Cicetti’s art room,” said Sarah. “Needless to say, we were thrilled at the prospect, while also somewhat daunted. Throughout the spring, we had the opportunity to meet with designers and architects and to ponder the possibilities of our new space!”

Alicia Crain and Sarah Hansen
PreK-B teachers Alicia Crain and Sarah Hansen were required to wear hardhats while decorating their room over the summer

During the week of Commencement in early June, Sarah and Alicia had to pack up their entire classroom so the building maintenance staff could move those items to an off-site storage location while their new classroom was transformed. The process took right up to the last days before the 2015-16 school year started.

Even though there are still a few finishing touches yet to be completed – such as the kitchen stove and cupboards, some decorative features and storage cabinets for supplies – both Alicia and Sarah are loving the new space.

“After living in our space for a couple months, we are more thrilled than ever!” said Sarah. “The location couldn’t be better and makes for such an easy adjustment for our young students. And because we are now adjacent to PreK-A, we are able to collaborate for language and math groups as well as many other spontaneous activities.”

Opening Day of PreK-B
Alicia Crain welcomes PreK-B students to the new classroom on the opening day of school

Just peek your head into the PreK-B class some day and you’ll notice how the look and feel of the room – the natural light from the wall of windows looking out across Viking Way to the stadium and woods beyond, the natural wood cabinetry, a kid-functional bathroom and a beautiful kitchen area – make for a peaceful setting throughout the day for our youngest students.

“While the traditions of PreK still exist in the new space,” Sarah added, “the natural feel of the room allows for growth and change.”


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