HANDBOOK

3A Svyatoshynsky Provulok Kyiv, Ukraine 03115 (38044) 452-2792

Our Staff:

Lois Bridenback, Preschool Director of Instruction

Olena Shefner, 4-Year-Olds Teacher; Timothy Paugh, 4-year-olds teacher; Natasha Yegorova, 3-Year-Olds Teacher; Alla Pustovit, 3-year-olds teacher, combination class; Zoya Khimich, 4-Year-Olds Teacher, combination class

Dear Parents,

Welcome to Kyiv International School Preschool! The teachers and I are certain that your child will have a happy and successful school year. Our staff is highly qualified, trained and experienced to offer your child a developmentally appropriate education that will prepare them to be successful in their future in school and life. I hope that this handbook will answer many of your questions but please feel free to contact me or your child's teacher at school with any other questions or concerns you might have. It's going to be an exciting year for all of us! Warm Regards, Lois Bridenback Pre-school Director of Instruction

Purpose and Operational Policies:

Kyiv International School's Preschool program is designed for children ages 3 to 4. Children are placed in class according to his/her age. Children entering a class must reach the appropriate age (3 for 3-year-olds, 4 for 4-year-olds) no later than October 31 of the year they enter. The KIS preschool program provides an American style, developmentally appropriate preschool program of instruction. Some of the skills that your child will learn through meaningful activities include: logical and critical thinking, problem solving, pre-mathematics skills, fine motor and gross motor skills, visual and auditory discrimination, vocabulary development, following directions, eye-hand coordination, independent thinking, and spatial perception. Teachers will send out a weekly newsletter in your child's Friday Folder which will keep you informed of what is being studied in the classroom, field trips, holidays, and other important information. Be sure to check for this and read the information included. You may also want to look at the curriculum website at http://curriculum.qsi.org for information on the skills being taught throughout the year. You will receive a Progress Report three times a year, at the end of each term. You may also make appointments with the teachers to discuss your child's progress in the interim. Preschool children are also taught by specialists in music and physical education as part of our program. They will work with educational games on computers and will visit the library once a week. The school will be closed for some National Ukrainian holidays as declared by the Ukrainian Government and approved by KIS administration. A school calendar is available on the website.

Parent Information

It is extremely important for your child that we have updated telephone numbers for you and the name and telephone number of at least one emergency contact. Separation From the Parent The process of separation from the parent as the child enters and attends preschool is one of the most important accomplishments of a preschool child. However, it may be more difficult for you as the parent. Your child may go off happily and play with the other children or your child may cling to you, cry and verbally refuse to be left at school. We must all be prepared for both scenarios. All children at some point must go through a separation process. When and to what degree depends on the child. Please do not worry that your child is not ready for preschool or that you have done something wrong in your parenting. We suggest the following tips to help your child pass through separation anxiety: *Do not discuss preschool excessively before starting. * Do not try and talk your child out of their feelings. Accept and acknowledge them, but do not change your course of action. Do not set an expectation that you will not be able to fulfill in the future. Do sit in one place and allow your child to move away from you as he/she feels ready. Please also do not stay long. The teacher or other children may encourage your child to play. When they accept this invitation, it means they are beginning to be comfortable with independence. *Never leave your child without saying good-bye. Many parents avoid saying good-bye because they think they will start crying and remember their insecurity. Unfortunately, slipping out the door only reinforces their insecurity because you have confirmed that you will just disappear. Say good-bye even if it triggers upset. Let the teacher comfort your child when you leave. *If your child needs to have you stay, feel free to stay in the classroom or on the play yard, but we urge you not to participate or play with your child. This is setting up the expectation that you will always be there. Also, please do not stay long as this again sets up a false impression that you will always stay. *Be the first to pick up your child. The child may cry upon seeing you even if they hadn’t cried all day. Children often hold in their emotions as part of the adaptation process. They are not at home and this is when we often see their best behavior until mom and dad appear. We see these as tears of joy. . At each level of psychological development, a child will react differently. As children mature they begin to identify themselves as independent individuals and personalities. It is important to point out that sooner or later, after the initial successful adjustment at school is made, many children will want to explore the limits of not going to school. Here are some suggestions that may help you handle the situation. *Place an emphasis on what the child is doing at school rather than what your activities are while they are in school. *See that the child is involved in a specific activity or in the hands of the teacher before you leave them. *Ask the teacher for help in separation. We expect crying and it is often to get the parent’s attention. In exceptional cases, particularly with the 3 year olds, if your child has extended periods of crying and no amount of comforting helps, we may need to arrange a gradual routine. You may arrange this with your child’s teacher. It is possible for children to experience this a month or even two after beginning school, even if they appear to be happy at this point. There are several things that can happen while your child adjusts to coming to school. As a parent, it is vital to be understanding and patient when your child is going through separation anxiety and being exposed to a new environment. Your child may regress in: * Eating habits * Bed wetting/wetting pants-a child may regress by not asking to go to the bathroom. * Biting-children are stressed starting school and some children are not used to being around other children. This tends to be a defense mechanism in some children who do not know how to handle conflict. Children also bite when they don’t know how to get their point across. If this happens, the teacher will encourage the student to ‘use their words’. If this continues to happen, other steps will be taken to ensure the safety of other children and solve the issue with the biter. Be patient and realize this is not abnormal. In order to maintain a happy, healthy environment, the children are taught the importance of safety, care of property, good habits, rules of conduct and consideration and respect for others. We work to make sure they are familiar with these rules. You can help your child by reinforcing and modeling these rules at home.

Discipline Policies

Physical punishment shall not be administered to children.The method of discipline shall not be humiliating, frightening, or physically harmful. Disciplinary action may be one or a combination of the the following: *Redirect child to another activity *Quiet Time if the child will not obey, “quiet time” will be considered. The child will be placed in a specified area until he/she can regain control of their a appropriate to the child’s level of understanding. emotions and the situation. The time spent in “quiet time” shall be directed towards teaching the child acceptable behavior and self-control. *Conference with Director of Instruction *Conference with Parents. Visits to school KIS preschool welcomes parent visits to the classes but asks that you are courteous in calling to make an appointment so that your visit is not disruptive. You are always welcome to talk with the Director of Instruction. School Dress "Play is the work of children" Preschool can be messy and we want your child to be comfortable and not worry excessively about dirtying their clothing. We ask that you send a complete change of clothing for your child, "just in case".The change of clothes must include socks, underwear, sweater, shirt, and bottoms (shorts or pants or skirt.) Please be sure that they come appropriately dressed for the season. Children will be going out to play in the winter and should have warm clothing that is comfortable and in which they can move easily. Shoes should have Velcro. NO tie shoes, please, unless the child can tie them themselves. Please NO crocs, as these shoes slip off easily and can cause your child to fall. The development of self-help skills is part of our program. Clothes and shoes that are too small, big or won’t stay tied can easily frustrate a preschooler. Help your child by dressing them for success! Snack: Your child will be allowed time to enjoy a mid morning snack and a late afternoon snack. You may participate in the KIS snack program, or send your own snack from home. Please do not send food that is not nutritious, such as candy and chocolates. Please send items such as fruits, vegetables, crackers, cheese, breads, granola bars,yogurt,etc that keep their energy up. Lunch: Please do not send lunches that need to be heated or kept cool. Please send in a thermos if you are sending food that needs to be kept warm. You may choose to participate in the school lunch program. Arrival We expect your child to arrive on time. Do not leave your child in the hallway. Teaching staff must be present in the classroom before a child may be left. Please inform your drivers or nannies that they must follow this policy for your child's safety and security. Teachers will be responsible for their students after 8:15 a.m. Please do not arrive before this time or leave your child unattended. ****If you arrive prior to 8:10 you must remain in reception until 8:10 at which time classrooms will be open for children. Dismissal Children will not be released to anyone that parents have not officially designated by placing their name and contact information in the listing on the permission form. If you have any changes, please contact your child’s teacher. All changes must be submitted in writing to avoid confusion. Classroom hours for 3 and 4 year olds are from 8:15 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Please pick up your child in reception after school Please stay out of the hallways after school. It is a very small hallway and becomes too crowded with all of the children and teachers. We understand that it is difficult for you during the first term, but beginning in January parents will be asked not to come in the hallways either before or after school. Transportation The following guidelines for preschool will be followed: *An adult must wait with the child at the bus stop in the morning until the bus arrives. The adult will help the child get on and off the bus (if needed). *The bus must be met by an adult when the bus returns in the afternoon. *Preschool children will be placed on a seat behind the bus driver. *Preschool staff at school will be designated to get children on and off the bus. Celebrating Birthdays Birthday recognition is important. We know some parents like to come in and celebrate at school. You may arrange with your child’s teacher an appropriate time and date to celebrate with your child’s classmates at the end of the school day. If you would like to celebrate outside of school, please do not send invitations to school or ask the staff to pass them out unless you are inviting the whole class. Please use the parent contact list to do the inviting if the party is only planned for a few children. Even at age 3 and 4, children are aware of who is and isn’t being invited and we want to avoid any hurt feelings. Holidays and Celebrations Being an International School, many holidays are celebrated in your child’s classroom such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Valentines’ Day, Easter and Christmas. Parents may be invited to participate in some way, depending on the teachers’ plans, such as sending treats, or Valentines Day cards, etc…but we also encourage you to share your family traditions as well. Some of our school and family holidays may not be familiar to our teaching staff, so this gives parents the wonderful opportunity to share their families’ traditions with others in their child’s class. This is encouraged as a reinforcement of the home-school connection and a validation of the child’s personal, meaningful experiences at home. School Performances Please join us at our Open House, International Night, music/dance performances and other school events. Your child will participate in two performances throughout the year where they will sing and perform dances together with other preschool classes. We hope you will join us for these events to support your child and all of the hard work they put into practicing with their teachers throughout the year. After each performance we ask parents to stay for a short reception and share treats with the children and other parents. It is a fun time! Share Time, Toys and Personal Belongings The teachers here at KIS realize that part of the adjusting process for a three and four year old in a new environment may include bringing something from home (toys) to class for comfort. While items of value should remain at home, other toys brought should be discussed with your childs’ teacher. Each class will have a ‘show and tell’ day where your child may bring a specified item to school. This promotes language development, helps to expand vocabulary and encourages social interaction among the children. Each classroom will have its own “show and tell” day and procedure. Your child’s teacher will inform you about the time and the appropriate days. Please do not send fragile toys, toy weapons of any kind, or toys with small parts. Children become very disappointed when their toy becomes broken or lost! Friday Folders Each student will have a Friday folder where children’s work from the week will be placed. Any notes or special notices will also be placed into this folder. It will go home every Friday and must be returned every Monday. Please do not lose this folder. Your child will be provided with the first folder. If your child’s folder becomes missing or lost, you will need to provide another one for your child to use. Assessment of Progress The classroom follows a three term program schedule. We will have parent-teacher conferences at these times to discuss your students’ progress with you. You will be notified of these times so you may sign up at a time that is most convenient for you. Your child will be assessed on Social Skills, Gross Motor Skills, Fine Motor Skills, Literacy Skills, Listening and Speaking Skills, Mathematics , Science, and Cultural Studies. Weekly Newsletter Every week during the school year, your child’s teacher will send a newsletter to keep you informed of upcoming events; update you on what is happening in the classroom and any other important news. Please be sure to read the newsletter so you will know what your child will be doing in class. Field Trips Throughout the year, your child’s class will participate in field trips that correlate with the unit being taught. You will be informed of these opportunities by your child’s teacher. There may be a small fee for these field trips that are not included in your child’s tuition. You may opt to not send your child if you choose. You may also have an opportunity to volunteer depending on the need of supervision. A permission form will always be sent home a few days prior to the field trip and must be sent back before the excursion. Absences If your child is ill or will not be attending school at any given time, please contact the teacher by phone or email so they are informed. If the child is ill, they must be symptom free for 24 hours before returning to school. If your child is showing any signs of symptoms, the teacher may call you to pick your child up. Health Children should be checked each morning at home for contagious and infectious viruses. No child shall be admitted who has a contagious or infectious virus. If your child has been exposed to any virus and/or shows any symptoms, please keep them at home and report it to the school immediately. A doctor’s note is required to return to school. If your child appears sick or is not functioning well in class, the teacher will make the decision to call home for the child to be picked up. Also, no child shall be admitted who displays any of the following symptoms and may only return to school with a doctors note to ensure the health of other students and his/her teachers: *Fever: 232 F4 5678C)taken orally, 232 F4 taken rectally5694C) *Diarrhea: 6 or more watery stools in a 24 hour period *Rash: body rashes, heat or allergic reactions to medications *Sore throat: if associated with fever or swollen neck glands Any child that is ill during the day or is hurt in some way at school shall be seen by the school doctor and supervised until someone arrives to pick the child up if necessary. If it is a serious injury that requires medical attention from medical personnel, the parent will be notified immediately. School staff shall be subject to the same exclusion guidelines for contagious or infectious diseases that are enforced for children. Parents of all children shall be notified of contagious illnesses, such as chicken pox, as soon as possible. Medications need to be checked in with our school doctor and shall be kept out of reach of children when dispensing. They shall be stored in a locked area at all times and shall be given to children only with a signed parental permission form. Lice: If your child has lice, they will be sent home immediately and may not return to school until all the lice and the nits are removed. They must also be cleared by our school’s doctor before returning to class. Homework It is not the policy of KIS Preschool to assign homework to students.