Kamehameha strongly supports the need for early childhood education and has dedicated significant resources to provide preschool opportunities to Hawaiʻi keiki. KS enrolls over 1,500 3- and 4- year-olds in 30 preschools statewide.
The preschool program, which emphasizes the development of social and emotional skills created the community-based preschools because the earliest years of life from before birth until 8 years of age is the most critical time in a child’s development. About 90 percent of brain growth occurs before age 5, when the foundations for thinking, language, vision, attitudes, aptitudes and other characteristics are established. Quality early education is key to future success in school and often in life.
Foundations for Early Learning
KS’ Community-Based Early Childhood Education curriculum and programming are based on the belief that children learn best through positive, supportive relationships with peers, teachers, families and community members. Positive relationships are fostered through natural conversations, social dramatic play, planned activities, celebrations and scheduled events where everyone participates together as a group. In addition, learning about and integrating cultural information and practicing Hawaiian values such as Aloha, Mälama, Pono, Kuleana, Laulima and Lokomaikaÿi is encouraged as part of everyday preschool life.
Classrooms are organized into several learning centers and a large group area for story time, music, dance and creative movement activities. Learning centers – reading, writing, art, science, math, dramatic play, blocks, manipulatives, discovery and sensory – have been placed to promote interactions and friendships and develop children’s different skills and abilities. Applications are accepted from November through January.
- Kalihi-Palama (Hawaiʻi Kai – Pearl City)
- Kahaluʻu (Kailua to Kahuku)
- Hoʻaliku Drake (Waipahu to Mākaha)
- Pu‘u Kāhea
- Hāmākua (Waikoloa to Laupahoehoe)
- Keaukaha (Papaʻaloa to Nāʻālehu)
- Kona (Kailua-Kona to Waiʻōhinu)
- Häna (Keʻanae to Kahikinui)
- Paukūkalo (All of Maui)
- Anahola (All of Kauaʻi)
- Kalamaʻula (All of Molokaʻi)
Kamehameha preschools operate for 10 months a year (August-May). Preschool instruction is 6 hours a day on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays and ends at noon on Wednesdays. The extended day program is offered at certain preschool sites and ends between 5:00 to 5:30 p.m. The preschools are closed for holidays, breaks – Fall, Winter and Spring, parent-teacher conferences and teacher work days.