What do you want most for your child? As parents, we want lots of things for our children. We want them to feel secure and loved. We want them to be healthy, and happy. We want them to have friends and social skills. We want them to be educated. In short, we want our kids to succeed. Success is an all-encompassing goal, and dependent on so many things. Some of these things are outside of our control as parents, but there are many things parents can do to aid success, and Grace Community School is here to help.
There are certain fundamentals so important to a child’s future they can be called the “keys to success.” The Grace Community School program has been designed to help parents pass on these “keys” to their children. Some of these keys are academic. Academic skills are important for success, and the most important of these is reading. The news is full of scary stories about our nation’s falling reading scores despite all the efforts of educators to boost literacy. Take comfort knowing that at Grace Community School, our emphasis on reading is not just for show. Our preschoolers really do read!
You don’t need Common Core to teach reading, you need phonics. Our Reading Circles allow kids to advance as quickly or slowly as they need to, with individualized attention. This means kids can reach their true potential and achieve true success. Does this mean four-year-olds can be reading at a third-grade public school level? Yes! Readers are leaders, and that’s much more than just a saying. The person who can read, and read well, knows what is going on. They can learn other skills easily, even on their own. Readers are independent. While technology and the changing job market create demand for new skills and make obsolete others, the need for literacy stays constant. It is truly fundamental.
Congratulations to these Reader Achievers for passing their letter groups! pic.twitter.com/EsoxFff6C7
— GraceCommunitySchool (@GCSchool) April 8, 2016
Other academic skills are also important, especially math. You won’t get too far in life if you don’t know how to count money and perform arithmetic. Grace Community School student learn these skills, too. Sadly, these basics, important as they are, aren’t taught at other preschools and daycares.
Academics is not the end of it, though. There are even more important “keys.” It has been wisely said, “The disciplined mind works best.” Control over mind and body is crucial to achieving a happy, successful life. Self-control has been called by psychologists the “master virtue” because of its fantastic overall importance. The person who has self-control, who can govern his or herself, has a great advantage over those who cannot control themselves. The Grace Community School program works to strengthen character traits like discipline, industry, self-reliance, and perseverance—virtues found in successful people. A successful life needs to be built on a firm moral foundation, too. This is why Grace Community School provides daily Bible Time for our students.
One of the best ways to help a child build mental discipline is with music lessons, like the ones offered by Grace Community School. There is something about the immediate feedback in playing music that is unique. Hit even one wrong note, and the student instantly knows a mistake has been made and must correct it, or the music doesn’t sound right. There are even links between music lessons and higher SAT scores, and studies that show the advantages of early music lessons last throughout life.
It should also be noted that accomplishments like reading and learning a musical instrument lead to something else in a child: high self-esteem. Our students don’t just feel special; they are special! The benefits of a Grace Community School education go on and on. There are so many “extras” as well: available karate and dance lessons (and now Art Class!, weekly photo program, free yearbooks, free meals and drinks, spring and Christmas programs, fun theme weeks, and daily social media updates just to name a few.
All this good stuff must cost an arm and a leg, right? No! Grace Community School is dedicated to keeping costs below even what other centers charge just for basic care. We even reward families who spread the good news about Grace Community School. Some of our moms, dads, and grandparents have earned hundreds of dollars just by referring their friends and coworkers to our school.
There has never been a better time enroll your child in Grace Community School, or help others enroll. Ask about our referral and financial aid programs today, and tell everyone how they can help their children succeed!
Originally published in the Summer 2014 Whale’s Tale.