Clark Fork School’s Chickadee and Meadowlark classrooms engage students in a two-year preschool curriculum. For students over four-years-old, this includes a holistic pre-K program structured to ensure your child is socially, emotionally and academically prepared for kindergarten. Since no two kids have the exact same academic needs, Clark Fork School also offers an Early Foundations program to serve students needing different types of supports and challenges.

What makes Early Foundations different from Preschool?

  • Students share the classroom with Kindergarten-age kids, allowing for academic and social peer modeling.

  • Learners engage in a kindergarten curriculum scaled to meet each child’s abilities and a more structured daily schedule.

  • EF offers in-depth thematic studies that encourage exploration and delve more deeply into place-based curricula.

  • All students attend class Monday through Friday, 8:45 a.m. until 3 p.m.

  • Students in the EF program have the chance to be part of the Kindergarten ski and swim lessons.

  • EF kids participate in the same community service projects, independence-building activities, and weekly saunters as Kindergarteners.

How does Early Foundations support students in the Kindergarten classroom?

  • The student:teacher ratio is 10:1, enabling teachers to work independently with students.

  • Students are given learning options to match their interests and abilities. Each station is individualized to meet students where they are in their learning.

  • Following a year of EF, students can opt for either a year of Kindergarten or make the leap straight into First Grade, depending on their age and social and academic development.

What kinds of kids are best suited for EF?

  • EF is open to kids who will be 5 before November 30, but who do not make Kindergarten cut-off date of September 10.

  • EF is ideal for children who are age-ready for Kindergarten, but would benefit from another year in a school environment that is holistic, experiential, exploratory, stimulating and nurturing.

  • EF students must be able to comfortably get through the day without a nap and be ready for the social and academic challenge of a Kindergarten curriculum.

So, do you think EF might be right for your little learner? 

Please review the admissions information and fill out the application. Once we receive your application, we will be in touch with you.

Acceptance to the Early Foundations program requires a meeting between the CFS Explorer Teacher and each child’s teacher and/or parents/guardians to make sure that they’re socially and academically ready to make the transition.