Early Childhood Education Program


dr mary 4At St. John Brebeuf School, we help our preschool students and their families approach the school environment with curiosity, eagerness, and joy.

Young children are drawn to learning, and the SJB Preschool is founded on the learning through play model.

Our preschool focuses on good transitions, and it is flexible to meet your child's needs.

Transitioning to school is important. We understand the fears and frustrations many parents have with their young child entering school, and our goal is to help families make smooth transitions. We know that parents are the first teachers, and our preschool staff works with parents to make sure lines of communication are always open.

Flexibility is crucial. We offer half-day and full-day preschool for both 3 and 4 year olds, and families can choose 2, 3, or 5 days per week. This enables each parent to choose the combination of hours and days that is best for their child.

At SJB School, our preschool staff are professionals in early child development. There is very little turnover -- most of the preschool staff have been with the school for over 15 years!

Our teachers are:

  • Mrs. Michelle Grzeda, Pre-K 3 Teacher
  • Mrs. Joanna Oliva, Pre-K 4 Teacher
  • Mrs. Julie England, Preschool Aide
  • Mrs. Barb Khatcherian, Preschool Aide



The St. John Brebeuf Preschool program is based on the belief that each child is unique, blessed by God with special gifts that need to be developed.

Our goal is to provide a school experience for three, four and five year olds that appreciates and supports the individuality of each child. Our program encourages cognitive, emotional, social, creative, and physical development integrated with religious guidance.

The preschool program is based on well documented research on how children learn. Developmentally appropriate activities are offered and the child’s play is respected, as children of this age learn best through play. We are dedicated to promoting a partnership with parents.

Our Daily Schedule -- Mornings (full-day and half-day)

Here is the usual schedule for the half-day students. The curriculum of the preschool is based on the Illinois Early Learning Standards. We give our learners a broad background in cognitive and sensory experiences, pre-reading and pre-math skills, and small and large muscle skills necessary for success in their future school years. Much opportunity for socialization is provided.

Gathering Time

Our daily routine includes a Gathering Time of conversation, prayer, and pledge. Guided by the Illinois Common Core Standards, the children are presented with a cross-curricular theme of interest that will be experienced and enhanced in the learning centers throughout the room.

Center Time

The children are allowed about an hour to work in the various activity centers set up for their explorations. Math, science, and language arts concepts are explored by hands-on use of age appropriate materials. Each classroom includes:

  • Bible Center
  • Blocks and Building Center
  • Math, Science and Discovery Center
  • Language Arts Center
  • Dramatic Play Center
  • Story Area
  • Play-Doh
  • Manipulatives
  • Music and Movement
  • Arts and Crafts
  • Daily Craft Projects

These centers is to encourage role playing, imagination, building, creating, observing, and experimenting using both cognitive and sensory skills. Children can also experience the joys of music and the written word. Again, the value of play must be emphasized. It is the most effective way young children learn.

Group Time

This is a time to reinforce the wide range of experiences and activities being explored throughout the room that help prepare the children for what they should be able to learn, know, and do before they start kindergarten.

Outdoor, Gym Time, or Special

Children develop their large muscles and coordination, get some fresh air and exercise, have an outlet for their energy, and develop social skills. The children have gym and music class.

Snack Time

The children use the washroom before sitting down together for a snack followed by quiet reading. Your child’s teacher will provide specifics about the classroom’s snack procedures.

Story and Music Time

Stories, singing, finger plays, dancing, and creative dramatics finish our day.

Afternoons (full-day)

St. John Brebeuf offers full day preschool to the 3- and 4-year-old preschool programs. The 3- and 4-year-old programs combine after the morning dismissal at 11:45 am and remain together until 3:00 pm Monday through Friday.

The afternoon schedule consists of:

  • a short play time
  • lunch at 12:00 in the classroom
  • rest time
  • outdoor play time (weather permitting)
  • structured time playing with manipulatives
  • story time
  • daily or weekly art projects

3- and 4-Year-Old Preschool (2017-18):
Half Day 8:30 AM – 11:45 AM
Full Day  8:30 AM - 2:45 PM

  • 2 Day: Tuesday, Thursday
  • 3 Day: Monday, Wednesday, Friday
  • 5 Day: Monday through Friday

Before/After School Extended Day
6:30 AM – 8:05 AM; 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Children must be three years old or four years old by September 1 to enter the respective classes.

We invite all interested parents to visit us and tour the school. Information about our tours is here:  School Tours

St. John Brebeuf School


8301 N. Harlem Ave.

Niles, IL 60714

(847) 966-3266


Office Hours:

Monday - Friday:  8:00 am - 3:30 pm



Registration is now open for the 2022-2023 school year!

St. John Brebeuf Extended Day Program

St. John Brebeuf offers an amazing Extended Day Program. 

Morning Hours:

6:30 am - 8:05 am

After School Hours:

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday

3:00 pm - 6:00 pm


2:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Click here for more information


Required Training for Parents/Guardians 



St. John Brebeuf School

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