The Growing Place Education



TGP Accreditation

The growing place receives prestigious accreditations

FUMCCG is proud and excited to announce that our very own The Growing Place (TGP) Early Childhood Center has now become an accredited program through the United Methodist Association for Preschools (UMAP). UMAP accreditation is widely recognized by The Department of Children and Families (DCF) as evidence of a high-quality care center for early childhood education.

As further testament to the superior educational quality of our preschool, TGP has also been awarded DCF’s Gold Seal Accreditation, which acknowledges child care facilities whose standards reflect the highest quality in the level of care and supervision provided to children. To learn more about these accreditations, please visit and



hands-on/ play-based learning



First UMC -The Growing Place’s educational practice and approach is founded on the beliefs and research of the “Constructivist Theories” (Dewey, Piaget, and Vygotsky) where learning is viewed as a complex process of individual and social experiences, and where children construct their own understanding and knowledge of the world, through a multitude of experiences and reflecting on those experiences. Classroom practice is child centered and developmentally appropriate. Children are viewed as competent individuals and active learners. Teachers are facilitators and co-learners, who present children with meaningful learning experiences, based on children’s interests, and geared towards creativity, self-expression, exploration, discovery, and investigation. The classroom environment is designed with furniture, materials, and resources to facilitate and support this process of child-centered, active and engaged learning.



Christian Education


Our teaching staff and administration help children to appreciate, show and understand God’s love for all God’s creation, including people of different cultures, races and religions. Throughout the school year and implemented in daily classroom practice and routines, Children:

  • Are given opportunities to experience the creative power of God as they discover the world God created.
  • Are encouraged to participate in Christian worship and music.
  • Participate in a variety of Christian celebrations in the classroom and during school and church-sponsored events.
  • Broaden their experiences and build ideas, feelings, and understandings related to the Christian faith through Bible stories, pictures, songs, Bible verses, and play activities.


Building on our educational philosophy, First UMC-The Growing Place uses HighScope curriculum, a research-based, and innovative approach to learning and development for toddler, preschool and elementary age children.

What is the Highscope Curriculum?

HighScope's educational approach emphasizes “active participatory learning.” Active learning means students have direct, hands-on experiences with people, objects, events, and ideas. Children’s interests and choices are at the heart of HighScope programs. They construct their own knowledge through interactions with the world and the people around them. Children take the first step in the learning process by making choices and following through on their plans and decisions. Teachers, caregivers, and parents offer physical, emotional, and intellectual support. In active learning settings, adults expand children’s thinking with diverse materials and nurturing interactions.

To learn more about the HighScope curriculum, visit their website at


TGP Accreditation

Corina Dekker, Director / (305) 446-0846 / 

DCF License #: C11MD0470