Valerie Saunders, Center Director
- Every Day · Every Child · Excellence · Accreditated · Knowledge Universe
Welcome to Westpark Kindercare! We are conveniently located in the residential area of Irvine called Westpark in one of the nicest locations in Irvine. We are surrounded by community parks, shopping and homes and are especially lucky to have a spacious school with four large playgrounds, all of them with grass and room to run. Although we have a wonderful curriculum and a beautiful school, it's our staff that sets us apart. Come visit us today and experience for yourself the Westpark Kindercare difference!
Valerie Saunders, Center Director
Many of our child care centers are accredited by national organizations that require us to meet rigorous early childhood education standards and guidelines for high-quality care and education. Programs that are accredited have demonstrated their commitment to go beyond the state’s minimum licensing requirements to meet and maintain these high standards of quality.
Babies grow and learn every day. Our goal is to provide a safe and nurturing "home away from home" where babies can explore and make new discoveries. We know that learning through play is extremely valuable at this age and our Early Foundations® Infant program is designed to give babies the skills that will serve as the building blocks for a lifetime of learning.
As toddlers develop friendships, self-esteem, and curiosity, our Early Foundations® Toddler program will help them explore their world in a safe and nurturing environment. Our unique curriculum is based on the philosophy that children learn best through experiences. So each day is filled with fun activities that excite and develop toddlers, giving them the comfort and confidence to speak those first few important words, as well as make their first friends.
At this age, children are making new discoveries daily. And as two-year olds begin to exert their independence, our Early Foundations® Discovery Preschool program is prepared to open their eyes to a world of learning, sharing, and exploring. Our holistic approach in the classroom engages young minds with a blend of music, art, and movement, as well as the early education fundamentals they'll need as they continue on to preschool.
As preschoolers gain more self-esteem, they may feel ready to take on the world. Our Early Foundations® Preschool program enhances that confidence by providing activities to help children become problem solvers and lifelong learners. Through independent exploration, structured activities, and hands-on learning, children will work on early literacy, math, science, and social studies concepts. A healthy dose of running, jumping, and dancing keeps them active too.
Prekindergartners are preparing for the adventure of a lifetime – school. And our Early Foundations Prekindergarten® program is designed to get them ready by teaching letters and words, math concepts, and valuable social skills. With small group instruction, independent play in an organized atmosphere, and whole-group activities, children will have all the right skills to hop, skip, and jump right into kindergarten.
A full-day interactive Kindergarten program that utilizes new curriculum with an interactive smart board making first grade readiness a priority.
The Cooking Adventures program gives children opportunities to participate in fun, developmentally appropriate cooking experiences. They will learn about recipes, ingredients, cooking vocabulary, and the importance of a healthy diet. The curriculum includes lessons on picnics, pizza, and heart-healthy meals.
The Math Adventures enrichment program is designed to teach important mathematics concepts such as geometry, numbers, measurement, and probability. Your child will learn about length, height, and weight. He will learn about shapes and solids. He will learn how to add, subtract, multiply, and count money. Math is everywhere and giving your child every advantage now will add up to success later in life.
Set your child up for advanced success with literacy through phonics, the study of letters and sounds. Reader books, games, and activity cards help your child understand the basics of vowels and blending syllables, giving him confidence and command of language.
Spanish Adventures provides young learners with a foundation for later success with the Spanish language. Music, games, children's Spanish literature, and other tools give children multiple opportunities to hear, practice, and see Spanish language for vocabulary and conversational development. Curriculum includes lessons on greetings, numbers, colors, animals, family, body parts and pets as well as how to get engage conversationally during common scenarios at home, a restaurant, or at the zoo. Qué pasa?
Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Light and Dark, plus the Sky and Weather
Through shadow play, experiments with flashlights, observing the Sun and more, infants and toddlers will enjoy learning about light and dark this month. Infants continue sensory development by looking at contrasting patterns and at objects that are clearly defined by sharp edges and bright colors, while toddlers will build on their understanding of the light and dark concepts with play around daytime and nighttime. The older Discovery Preschool children will turn their attention to the sky as they learn about weather, the Moon, the Sun, and stars.
Children 4–5 years old: Transportation, Healthy Bodies, and Winter
For children in the Preschool and Kindergarten classrooms, January is filled with variety! They’ll begin by learning about transportation and studying how things get from “here” to “there.” A few weeks later, the focus will shift to health and bodies, with an emphasis placed on how to make good choices for a growing body. Towards the end of the month, children will be introduced to the transformative nature of the winter season and learn how to dress and take care of themselves when it’s cold outside.
Every school has its own personality and this is where we truly shine. Our staff members are engaged professionals with a true heart for children. With years of experience and an enthusiasm for teaching this staff is a wonderful example of early childhood educators; I am proud to introduce you to them.
Valerie has worked in Preschools since she was eighteen years old and has loved every minute of it. She enjoys the day to day "little miracles" that happen when a child discovers something new. We have wonderful parents here at Westpark KinderCare. Valerie is fortunate to be a part of this amazing "family"!
Life begin outside of your comfort zone" - Neale Donald Walsch
I am in the Early Childhood Education field because I love to help children grow and learn new skills. I continue to work in this field simple because it makes me happy. Nothing is greater than watching a child learn and master a new skill. I think all of the areas of development are important, however I, personally, enjoy the creative expression development the most.
Nothing is Impossible, the word itself says I'm Possible" -Audrey Hepburn
I enjoy teaching children, because I love to witness the "AHA" moments happen, when I am teaching them a new concept. I love working with a diversity of children, because each individual child brings something new to the classroom community for everyone else to learn from.
Live each day to the fullest, because you do not get TODAY back" (personal quote)
I began working in the Early Childhood Education field as an ROP student in High School. I was hired at my internship school and that is when I knew that I wanted to work in this field for the rest of my life. I love what I do and am very passionate about it as well. I believe that the most important thing to provide as an Early Childhood Educator is a safe and nurturing environment for the children. If they feel safe and loved they will meet their full potential. My job is fulfilling to me when I see the children reach so many milestones and when I get their hugs each day!
Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times; if one only remembers to turn on the light" -Albus Dumbledore
I originally went to school to become a nurse, but after I went to India to work with children for the summer I changed my mind. After I returned, I changed my major to Child Development and am so glad that I did. Seeing their faces when they finally mastered a new skill, after trying day, after day, after day, is the most rewarding feeling in the world. It brightens up my day to see them grow physically and academically and emotionally.
Be Always Positive" -unknown
I have always wanted to be a teacher from as far back as I can remember. I love to teach and enjoy guiding children towards growing and learning in their early years. I always keep in mind that every child has their own unique personality. Each child differs in their capabilities in physical/mental/social-emotional/ development, and I strive to adapt my teaching technique to meet each child's developmental needs.
Today You are You! That is Truer than True! There is No One Alive Who is Youer than You!- Dr. Seuss
I believe that children are the future. The mindset, education, and values of the next generation are the only things that will maintain this forever evolving world.
I believe in creative exploration to learn; trial and error while exploring the surrounding world. Children need the right guidance in order to succeed, that is why I teach. My personal hope is that I help encourage and support the next generations, so that they may continue to thrive and flourish long after I am gone.
I entered the Early Childhood Education field for a job and looking to better myself personally and professionally. As I began working with the children, I found myself enjoying the children and seeing them grow in many developmental areas. Therefore, I went back to school to get a BA in child development and family studies. The biggest reward for me is seeing the children develop their own understanding of the world around them. It is really amazing to witness children developing a sense of self-competence and self-worth as well as working on cognitive development. I believe that to help children reach their full potential both, teachers and parents, must work together to help the child succeed.
We all make mistakes, we are all just learning" - Unknown
Born and raised in Harrisburg, PA, attended college and then joined the Marines where I was stationed on the East Coast and then transferred to Camp Pendleton, CA. I got into this field by chance, and during that time I realized how important Early Childhood Education is to the development of each individual child. I really enjoy hearing the children talk about all the new knowledge they have learned and accumulated during their time in my classroom.
Every child you encounter is a divine appointment and a special gift".
I started teaching preschool when my daughter turned 2 years old. I fell in love with teaching preschool children, and continued teaching even after my daughter moved onto Elementary school. I do not see this as a job, but as an opportunity to sow into the live of children. I love to see the growth and development in each individual child. I am passionate about loving and caring for the children.
Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Family, Friends, and Things that Go!
Infants and toddlers will be exploring family and friends, while three-year-olds will focus on things that go vroom! Social and emotional development is foundational to growth and development in babies, so this month, infants and toddlers will participate in activities that reinforce their connection to family while also exploring connections that exist outside their home, such as friends. Meanwhile, their older friends in Discovery Preschool will learn about and play around with things that move (like bicycles, cars, buses, trains, and airplanes), which are all very exciting for little ones as they continue to explore the world outside their homes.
Children 4–5 years old: My Country + Tools and Machines
The four- and five-year-olds continue exploring the world around them by learning about the state and country they live in! They’ll sings songs, play games based on travel, and learn about flags, state foods, and more. Children will also be introduced to cardinal directions (east, west, north, and south) and gain an appreciation for travel and meeting new friends from different places.
Children are naturally fascinated with machines and how things work and are put together. So to encourage that fascination, during the second half of this month children will learn about and play around with tools and machines. In addition to building literacy skills by using the names of machines and tools, children will develop math skills by graphing information, counting wheels, and more.
We are a Nationally Accredited Center
New Year's Day
Spring PDD (Professional Development Day) TBA
Fall PDD (Professional Development Day) TBA
The Day after Thanksgiving
Christmas Eve (early closure)
Keeping your child safe and secure is our first priority. In addition to the built-in security features at the center we strictly follow established procedures for your child's arrival and departure. Teaching your child the importance of hand washing at an early age helps maintain his/her health. Children may become sick during the day; if your child becomes ill while at the school we think it's better for him/her to be at home with you. We will call you and ask that you pick your child up within the hour. All children need to be symptom free for 24 hours before returning to school.
We also follow monthly emergency drills and have a Health and Safety Coordinator on staff who maintains our safety and cleanliness records.
Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and though the various training opportunities in the community.
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