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Serving 20 children between the ages of four and five years, the curriculum of expanded "learning centers" is geared to meet the cognitive, physical and social-emotional needs of this age group. Children continue to build the foundations necessary to learn to read and write as well as developing math and reasoning skills.

Each of our classrooms has a dedicated lead teacher and assistant teacher.

Samantha Chaney
Samantha Chaney

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Ana Olguin
Ana Olguin

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Children also are cared for by our student teaching assistants.

I graduated from the University of Texas at Tyler in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies and have worked in the public school system for six years, teaching kindergarten and middle school English. I have three children: Maddie, Mason and Sloane. We enjoy going to church on Sundays and spending time at the lake on the weekends.

Hello, ECHL family! I've worked in early childcare for since 2018 and am working to further my education here at SFA. My favorite things to do in my spare time are reading, creating art and traveling.

Activities and development

Early Childhood Laboratory classrooms follow the Constructivist Theory approach. Our teachers develop outdoor lesson plans to correlate with weekly lesson plans that reinforce indoor learning and structure playtime to optimize learning. Using curriculum and assessments for guidance, design of the learning centers is based on the learning needs of each individual child.

In the Pre-K II classroom, we use a project approach to learning:

  • Topic investigation
  • Field work: Observation, exploration and predictions of new understandings
  • Culminating and debriefing events: Display of findings and presentations

Children utilize math boxes and writing boxes to further develop their emerging skills. Learning centers allow children to work cooperatively in small and large group activities. "Rug-time" group experiences include a morning meeting, stories and music.

Daily schedule

Time Activity
7:10 to 8:10 a.m. Arrival and sign in, limited learning centers
8:10 to 8:15 a.m. Clean up
8:15 to 8:30 a.m. Read aloud
8:30 to 9:30 a.m. Snack, outdoor learning centers and play
9:30 to 9:45 a.m. Wash hands, transition, prepare for morning meeting
9:45 to 10:05 a.m. Morning meeting, preview new centers
10:05 to 11 a.m. Learning centers
11 to 11:15 a.m. Reading workshop, project work
11:30 to 11:40 a.m. Lunch
11:45 to Noon Naptime story, lights out
Noon to 1:30 p.m. Naptime, quiet time 
1:30 to 2 p.m. Quiet wake up, reading
2 to 2:20 p.m. Snack
2:30 to 3 p.m.

Mondays and Wednesdays: Math Boxes
Tuesdays and Thursdays: Writing Boxes
Fridays: Music

3 to 3:15 p.m. Review calendar
3:15 to 4 p.m. Outside learning centers and play
4 to 4:15 p.m. Read aloud
4:15 to 5 p.m. Learning centers
5 to 5:20 p.m. Music, limited centers, departure

Stocking their cubby

Here's a quick checklist of items to keep in your child's classroom cubby:

  • Lovey (small comfort item)
  • Two to three sets of season-appropriate clothing

We provide naptime items (cot, pillow and blanket), toothbrush and water bottle. 

Toys must stay at home. Once a month, your Pre-K II child will have their own "share day" that allows them to bring an item from home and share it with their classmates. The teachers will communicate the calendar and all appropriate guidelines.

New families:

Bring three to four photos of family members for your child's scrapbook collage page.


Photo gallery of classroom and playground

Pre-K playground

The pre-k I and II classes share a large playground with ample shade and many opportunities for dramatic play. During outside play, children enjoy riding tricycles along a bicycle path, creating masterpieces in the sandbox, swinging to the moon, scaling the large climber and enjoying snacks or lunches using the numerous picnic tables.



Early Childhood Laboratory
Phone: 936.468.4006
Fax: 936.468.8226
Staff directory

Physical Address:
Janice A. Pattillo Early Childhood Research Center
2428 Raguet St.

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 6105, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962

National Association for the Education of Young Children

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