Art plays an important part in Valley Drive’s preschool program and is integrated into most Valley Drive activities. It contributes to our children’s creative development and supports skills in many other areas. Making art can be a science activity, language activity, or math activity. It can help children develop social skills, engage in sensory exploration, practice fine muscle control, and strengthen eye-hand-motor control. Art activities give children a chance to make choices and solve problems in an atmosphere where freedom of expression is encouraged.
At Valley Drive Cooperative Preschool, we recognize the important role music plays in our children’s lives and development. The foundation of our music program is that children must be active participants in the music-making process. Only by actually creating sounds with a variety of instruments, or materials, and through active involvement with music, will children come to a real understanding of what makes sound and music.
Through the music program at Valley Drive, our students:
- Explore music through singing, playing instruments, and creating body movements
- Participate in group in music making
- Expand listening skills
- Develop increased enjoyment and appreciation of music
- Hear and explore the music of other cultures
- Explore his or her own creativity in music
- Have experiences that reflect developmental needs
Science & Exploration
Science education is part of every class at Valley Drive. Teachers use hands-on materials to introduce children to science concepts. Through discussion, children reveal their thinking allowing teachers to plan further activities to build on what children understand. The Exploration Room gives them an opportunity for hands-on experience and discovery.
The large outdoor area for both playground fun and teacher-led exploration of the garden areas at the Immanuel Church on the Hill location make an ideal outdoor classroom. Children can be outdoors for much of the day when they wear appropriate clothing. Explorations include art and science activities, integrated with math and literacy skill-building.
Wendy Owens joined the Valley Drive community as a parent in 2012 and her two children are both Valley Drive alumni. In addition to being active within the school while her kids were students, Wendy served on the Board of Directors leading fundraising activities and serving as Board President for the 2015-2016 academic year. Wendy joined our teaching team in 2016 – working in the classroom and helping with science and exploration activities. She loves nurturing our kid’s curiosity and exploration of the environment around them. Her passion for encouraging children to use their individual strengths to grow fits perfectly with our exploration program. Wendy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and has an undergraduate degree in psychology from University of Virginia as well as a Masters degree in social work from New York University. Prior to her time at Valley Drive, Wendy was a school social worker with children ages 3-15 in special education settings. When not at work she loves a nice bike ride, a fun run and spending time with her family.