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Bold. Distinctive. Biblical.
A Principle-Approach® Pre-K–12 Christian School in Lancaster County, PA


Using the Principle Approach, a biblical method of education that helped forge our nation, Dayspring Christian Academy offers a refreshing answer to families who seriously desire to launch their child’s education in a program that is academically rigorous in a loving, nurturing environment. Three- and five-day programs are available.


In the Principle Approach Pre-Kindergarten at Dayspring, seeds of learning are sown in each distinct subject. Children expand their God-given love of learning through the Principle Approach method of education, which was used during the colonial and founding periods in America. Children begin to learn the rudiments of the subjects like science, history, and geography. They view God as the author of every subject with a purpose and plan for each in our modern world. They begin to record their learning in their own hand and even begin to reason from the Bible in every subject area. This intentional method of teaching and learning teaches students to think and reason, not just regurgitate facts.

Purpose of the Pre-K and Kindergarten Programs
  • To fortify the love for God that is being taught at home.
  • To instill a love for the special gift of learning that God has given to each of us.
  • To assist parents in training their child in Christian manners and habits.
  • To begin the process of fitting the child for usefulness in his/her future.

At Dayspring Christian Academy, two levels of kindergarten are offered to the Lancaster, PA, community: a Pre-Kindergarten program for children ages 4 and 5, and Kindergarten (ages 5 and 6). Both Kindergartens are 3-day programs, however, parents may supplement these 3-day programs by enrolling in our I.D.E.A.! program to create a full, 5-day Kindergarten schedule.

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Pre-Kindergarten: 3-Day Program
Christian Pre-K in Lancaster, PA Teacher: Dr Shelly Hilton

Dr. Shelly Hilton, Developmental Kindergarten Teacher

This level is appropriate for the child who has turned 4 years old by September 1. The program is activity-oriented while introducing the structure and rigors of a formal classroom setting. As a first step into scholarship, the student notebook is introduced and students begin formal steps toward reading through the Sound Sensible® program. Seeds of scholarship are sown in every academic subject in an inspirational manner. Students develop early math skills, learn a Bible verse for each letter of the alphabet, and delve into literature as they study the life of Beatrix Potter. They explore music, art, the environment around them, and learn to experience the wonder of creation. Highlights of Dayspring’s Pre-K program include:


  • Students begin phonemes and short vowel sounds. (Many students are reading by the end of the year!)
  • A science unit on farm animals with a trip to Long’s Park.
  • Classical literature focus is on the life and works of Beatrix Potter and a study of Mother Goose rhymes including a dress-up day of characters.
  • Memorizing a verse from the Bible representing each letter of the alphabet.
  • The use of art and drama to enhance studies in the rudiments of every subject, including the biblical foundation of each.
  • Technology is brought directly into the classroom curriculum.
  • In physical education, we incorporate an action-based learning program that prepares the brain for input using challenge, feedback, and physical activity through stations.
I.D.E.A.! (Supplemental Kindergarten to create a 5-day Kindergarten program)

I.D.E.A. is Dayspring Christian Academy’s supplemental Kindergarten for 4 and 5 year olds. I.D.E.A. stands for Inspire. Discover. Explore. Achieve. Access to the I.D.E.A. program is included in our Kindergarten application. The guide behind the I.D.E.A program encompasses the following attributes:


  • To offer a community style of learning where children are able to share their ideas while also learning to listen to their neighbor.
  • To offer student a time where they can seek to apply biblical principles from direct Bible reading to their lives.
  • To offer planned brain breaks throughout the day to allow student to refresh their emotional and intellectual think tanks.


  • To expand the student’s knowledge in the areas of science and history and put into practice all they have learned through the use of STEM, collaborative group projects, history character studies, as well as other creative avenues.


  • To give students an opportunity to explore their God-given creative abilities through art, drama, and music.
  • To allow students to learn how to be good stewards of the world God has given us by exploring and learning about our National Parks as Jr. Rangers.


  • To allow students to capitalize on language, spelling, and math skills already learned and to further their individual abilities in these foundational skills.

Dr. Shelly Hilton is our I.D.E.A. teacher. Class size cap is 16.

Lancaster, PA Private Pre-K School

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