"Preschool is my happy place. The troubles of the world seem to melt away when I see the smiles on the faces of our little ones. It is a privilege to be a part of such an outstanding community...God is doing amazing things through Desert Christian Schools!" - Angie Alday, Preschool Director
Desert Christian Preschool…where your child’s love for learning begins!
At Desert Christian Preschool, we provide an inquiry-driven, play-based, child-focused, Christ-centered program. Our primary focus is for your child to know, love, and follow Jesus Christ, all while developing a lifetime love for learning. We provide an exploratory, investigative, sensory-rich learning environment essential in nurturing your child’s desire to learn.
We believe that young children are creative and competent learners. We further believe that children excel when they construct their knowledge through investigation and play. Meaningful educational experiences are planned in a caring and diverse environment to promote physical, social, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual growth. Together with skilled and thoughtful teachers, children build literacy, numeracy, and abundant life skills, such as reasoning and communication abilities. Children become problem solvers and critical thinkers.
Desert Christian Preschool is a Reggio Emilia inspired school, providing an emergent approach to educating children that is inquiry-driven and play-based. We believe that the Lord has created each child uniquely and we endeavor to meet every child's needs. We do this exceptionally well in an environment filled with God’s wonders and love. Through the Reggio Emilia Approach, we can enhance the gifts God has given to each child by providing thought-provoking and unique experiences based on your child’s interests.
Desert Christian Preschool is licensed by the Arizona Department of Health, Childcare Licensure, and is accredited through the Association of Christian Schools International.
Preschool is now a provider for Child Care Aware of America
Meet our Preschool Director
Hello! My name is Angela Alday, but the children affectionately call me Miss Angie. With God’s calling and equipping, I became an early childhood educator in the fall of 1990. I have been thoroughly blessed by hundreds of children and their families over the years. My family has been a part of the Desert Christian family since 2001. My two beautiful children have attended Desert Christian High School, now both alumni, where my husband serves as the Athletic Director.
We believe that not only our curriculum must be integrated with God’s Word and principles, but that our methods and personal interactions must also be reflective of these principles. Everything we do has this as its basis and emphasis. Your child will have the opportunity to learn through exploration in an imaginative, wonder-filled environment where they are encouraged to investigate the world around them. A spiritual emphasis on understanding who God is permeates through all activities.
You will also find that partnering with families is a foundational concept for Desert Christian Schools. We desire to make an environment that is an extension of the home which honors Christ and the children He created. Desert Christian Schools offer each child a place to feel loved, nurtured, and secure while developing personally and uniquely.
I look forward to partnering with you in “bringing up your child in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” (Ephesians 6:4)
Angela Alday | Preschool Director
THE PRESCHOOL CURRICULUM
The Desert Christian Preschool program is based on both ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International) and Arizona Early Learning Standards featuring a biblically-based, emergent curriculum inspired by the Reggio Emilia Approach.
3 - 4 Years Old
- 3 Days a Week | Morning Program 8:00 am - 11:50 am
- 4 Days a Week | Morning Program 8:00 am - 11:50 am
- 5 Days a Week | Morning Program 8:00 am - 11:50 am
The emphasis for this class is to introduce children to school and their life-long learning experience. Children learn social and emotional skills such as, taking turns, following a routine, following directions, and developing positive social interactions. An emphasis on language acquisition and development is provided through carefully planned play-based activities both indoors and outdoors. Intentional interdisciplinary learning centers (which we refer to as provocations and invitations) are created each day to encourage children to actively explore and investigate their environment. Interactive play and exploration is provided to encourage both large and small motor development. Art exploration, phonological awareness, basic counting skills, scripture verses, songs and poems, listening to and interacting with stories, spatial awareness, and sensory activities are all a part of your child’s learning experience.
Art exploration, phonemic awareness, basic counting skills, scripture verses, songs and poems, listening to and interacting with stories, spatial awareness, and sensory activities are all a part of your child’s learning experience.
4 - 5 Years Old
- 5 Days a Week | Morning Program 8:00 am - 11:50 am
- Bilingual 5 Days a Week | Full Day 8:00 am - 2:50 pm (Early Dismissal at 2:15 pm on Wednesdays)
As we see our children mature and grow, we find them more competent in making decisions regarding their own learning through exploration and investigation of their environment. Children will be provided provocations to enhance their numeracy skills, letter recognition, early literacy skills in both English and Spanish, art exploration, music and rhythm movement, scripture verses, science and sensory, social skills, and large and small muscle development. Risk taking (trying new things) is highly encouraged in this emotionally safe learning environment. We have found for children to succeed on their academic journey, they need a solid social-emotional foundation. You will find that these foundational skills are cultivated each and every day. We believe that children excel when invested in their own education. We encourage this by providing developmentally appropriate opportunities through our inquiry-driven, play-based environment.
Students are finding that they are competent in many ways as they make decisions for their learning while exploring and investigating their environment. Math, letter recognition, reading and writing readiness, art, music and rhythm movement, science experiments, social skills, and large and small muscle development provide interactive opportunities throughout the day. Children will begin to print, recognize alphabet letters and sounds, and learn basic math concepts such as number recognition and one-to-one correspondence. Learning scripture, poems and songs are also an important part of their experience. Children must be 4 years old by September 1st to be in the 4 -5 year old program.
Kindergarten Readiness: An assessment by both preschool teachers and kindergarten teachers is coordinated to ensure your child is ready to have a successful Kindergarten experience. All children must be 5 years old by September 1 to attend Desert Christian Schools’ Kindergarten.
- Early Drop Off | 7:30 am - 7:49 am
- After Care | 11:50 am - 5:00 pm
Our After Care Program is an extension of our morning programming and children are welcome to participate in the following activities:
- Lunch Bunch (lunch with teacher and friends)
- Outdoor Exploration
- Nap/Rest Time
- Provocations and Invitations
- Story Time
- Bible stories and verses
- Independent and peer play
After Care is intentionally differentiated to meet the unique needs of your child. While some children need a nap, others simply need a quiet time to rest and recharge. After Care meets the need for each of these. Independence and self-sufficiency is fostered in a nurturing environment. Children are offered a balance of student-initiated and teacher-supported activities throughout the afternoon.