Curriculum: Gan Shalom has adopted The Creative Curriculum®, recognized as a comprehensive, rigorously researched approach that honors creativity and respects the role teachers and parents play in making learning exciting, challenging, and relevant for every child. Twice a year, in the fall and spring, parent/teacher conferences are held. Information about child development will be shared and age-appropriate goals will be identified to be followed by the Creative Curriculum Gold Assessment program.
Judaic Curriculum: Our classroom experiences are infused with Jewish values, customs and culture, and our teachers integrate Judaic principles into everyday activities.
Professional Team: Our professional team consists of teachers who are passionate about early childhood development and who have significant experience working with young children. Area clergy are an integral part of our team, providing guidance on issues of Judaism and engaging with our children for story time, sports, play-n-pray, and Shabbat activities.
Licensing: Gan Shalom was awarded a two (2) year license by the Iowa Department of Human Services as a full day child care center servicing up to fifty (50) children. In 2015- 2016, we will be able to apply for a rating under the Iowa Quality Rating System and will then move on to obtain accreditation from the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs.
Food: Nutritious, Kosher snacks are provided in the morning and afternoon. Children are asked to bring dairy/vegetarian lunches. Families will be given information on lunch “dos and don’ts” during registration.
Program: Gan Shalom is licensed as a year-round program. We have selected to separate into two programs to include the school year and a summer camp program. Both programs offer full three and five day schedules. For the 2015-2016 school year we will be offering 4 classrooms: 2 year olds, 3 year olds, 4 year olds and the pre-kindergarten room appropriate for children who will be eligible to enter kindergarten in the fall of 2016.
Extended Care: Before care (7:30-9:00) and after care (3:30-5:30) wraps around our daily preschool program (9:00-3:30). Families can sign up for these services on a regular basis, ensuring an available spot, or can use these services when the necessity arises. Transportation is also available, leaving from Beth El Jacob Synagogue at 8:30 and return to the Synagogue at 4:00. Additional program information is available at the center.
Need-based Scholarships: The Jewish Federation is committed to providing a quality preschool for our Jewish community. Scholarships applications available for families raising Jewish children who cannot afford to pay full fees. Scholarships are awarded as an exchange of services. Families receiving financial assistance are asked to volunteer their time, talents, and/or services to help defray other costs.