Sunday Schedule

services are at 8:32 and 11 a.m.

The 8:32 worship is contemporary, while 11 a.m. is more traditional. On special occasions, the service schedule may vary. This is rare and will be listed in the Current Events section below the image grid of the front page.

sunday school is from 9:45 - 10:45 a.m., main campus

Visit the Children's Ministries, youth's The Grid, and adult's Academy of Discipleship pages for details about classes.


Main campus

6935 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
Call us at 703-256-8330 or email
Fax 703-914-8896.
Office hours are weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

AUMC Mission center

7901 Heritage Drive, Annandale, VA 22003

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 Phone:  703-256-8667

Fax:  703-914-8896


Director:  Cherrie S. Welch


Asst. Director:  Michelle M. Shepard              Office Mgr:  Ann Marie Brown    
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Thank you for your interest in the AUMC Early Learning Program!

  • ELP offers children the following opportunities to learn and grow:
  • Classes for children ages 1 to 3 years old
  • Classes held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and/or Thursdays
  • Options to attend one, two, or three days per week
  • September to mid-June school year
  • Hours 9:30AM to 2:30PM
  • Early Morning Classes available beginning at 8:00AM
  • Late Day class available until 5:30PM
Direct links to commonly searched school information 
  Monthly Publications:
                                                                 2018-19 Enrollment Information                                                  2018-19 Application for Admission
Click here for


AUMC Early Learning Program is state licensed and regulated by the Virginia Department of Social Services and accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs, a division of the National Association for the Education of Young Children [NAEYC]. This is a prestigious recognition, achieved by only seven percent of early childhood programs nationwide, which demonstrates the commitment to early childhood education. For more information on the standards maintained by nationally accredited programs, visit their website at


ACCREDITATION UPDATE:  The Weekday Preschool and Early Learning Programs received an excellent rating from NAEYC on their latest site visit in February 2016!  The 10 basic standards (listed below) were reviewed. Each standard is broken down into many criteria. The summation of the score total received for each standard is below:


        * Some scores include additional credit given for meeting “Emerging Criteria” that is not required, but is given extra credit if you can meet it.


         1. Relationships =  100%

         2. Curriculum =  100%

         3. Teaching =  100%

         4. Assessment =  100%

         5. Health =  100+*

         6. Teachers =  100%

         7. Families =  100+*

         8. Community Relationships =  100+*

         9. Physical Environment =  100%

        10. Leadership and Management =  100+*


            Furthermore, ALL classrooms observed scored 100% in all areas!!!




 Philosophy and Objectives 

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The ELP philosophy of learning through play, exploration, and experimentation is based on the theory that play is the most effective method of learning for young children. The program gives each child the opportunity to experience and socialize through a diverse variety of activities. Teachers treat each child with respect and with an understanding of children's unique individual abilities and development. They create classrooms that foster social skills, self-confidence, and self-esteem. ELP is designed to provide an atmosphere where children are happy, secure, and excited to learn under the guidance of a trained, qualified, and nurturing staff.

Children are encouraged, but never forced, to participate in the various activities and interest areas throughout the classroom. They progress at their own pace and according to individual needs and abilities. For more information on developmental appropriateness and its position with the National Association for the Education of Young Children [NAEYC], click the boxes below:







Top-Rated Preschool by


The Weekday Preschool and Early Learning Program is proud to have been chosen twice as a top preschool by Northern Virginia Magazine in their last ratings of area preschools. To read more about the rankings, click on the magazines below:







The Teaching Strategies® System



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All ELP teachers use the Second Edition of The Creative Curriculum as a guideline for writing their lesson plans. This curriculum emphasizes a large variety of experiential and hands-on activities which are developmentally appropriate for the individual children within each classroom. Through content and classroom interest areas, children are offered a variety of experiences daily to include art, music & creative movement, science & discovery, technology, sign language, sensory activities, language, early literacy, early math, cooking activities, gross motor activities, fine motor activities, and dramatic play. Learning occurs one-on-one, in large groups, and in small groups.  

Link here for more about The Creative Curriculum:.






Assessments and Parent-Teacher Conferences



In conjunction with our curriculum, an ongoing assessment of children's individual development is key to planning appropriate classroom learning experiences and helping all children to succeed. Our teachers use Teaching Strategies GOLD Assessment System, which is a comprehensive assessment tool based on the latest early childhood research that follows a child's unique development from birth through Kindergarten. This assessment system is fully aligned with the Virginia Foundation Blocks for Early Learning as well as the Head Start Child Development and Early Learning Framework. Children are formally assessed in Language, Cognitive, Physical, and Social-Emotional areas of development. Assessed skills and goals for their child are shared with parents through two written reports and two parent-teacher conferences throughout the school year.

Click the boxes above to learn more about the GOLD Assessment System.



Click below to view the 2017-18 



In addition to meeting national accreditation standards by their education level, experience, and teaching skills, ELP teachers are carefully chosen for their warmth and understanding of young children and their development.  Lead teachers are degreed and draw from their expertise and experience to engage children in the adventure of learning. All staff are certified in CPR and First Aid. 

Security checks are performed on each staff member. Hiring practices are non-discriminatory. Continuing education training in early childhood development is required annually and made available to all teachers.




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Learning Environments in the early childhood classroom are called Interest Areas, or Learning Centers.

Click on the box below to learn more about how children thrive and develop in each of these areas:



Each classroom maintains a safe and age-appropriate child-to-staff ratio which meets NAEYC standards. Class assignments are based on the ages of the children enrolled. All children are placed in a developmentally appropriate classroom.

All class configurations are subject to change at any time based on current enrollment. 


In addition to the regular T-W-Th classes which run from 9:30-2:30, Interim Morning and Late Day class options are offered.

Click here for information on those options.   


*Children who are 3-years-old by September 30 and are independently toilet-trained qualify for classes in the Weekday Preschool.

Click here to view the WPS/ELP Toileting Policy.


*Click here for information on the Weekday Preschool. 





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The ELP is located on the main campus of AUMC at 6935 Columbia Pike in Annandale. Classrooms are arranged to accommodate children individually as well as in small groups and large groups. Large rooms are available for enrichment events which occur outside the classroom. There are four outdoor playgrounds. Classes are assigned to the playground(s) appropriate for the age of the children in the class. Indoor play spaces are available when outdoor play is not possible which is furnished with equipment that meets the daily gross motor needs of young children, and is safe and age-appropriate.






  • Children meet with a music teacher daily.
  • Two and three year old classes meet with a science teacher regularly.
  • Three year old classes attend monthly yoga classes.
  • Throughout the year, enrichment visitors come to the school. Children enjoy guests such as firefighters, puppeteers, storytellers, children's bands, doctors, dentists, jugglers, Under the Sea show, Reptiles Alive show, and a petting zoo with pony rides. 







ELP is fully licensed and regulated by the Virginia Department of Social Services and is nationally accredited by the NAEYC, and abides by all health and safety standards therein.

Fairfax County Health Department regulations require that new and updated health forms and releases be on file for every child by the beginning of each school year. A packet of health forms are given upon enrollment.

It is the goal of ELP to keep the spread of germs and illness at a minimum. After an illness, children must be symptom-free for 24 hours prior to returning to classes. Virginia Licensing requires that all parents notify the office immediately if their child contracts a communicable disease so that other parents may be notified. Universal sanitary procedures are followed throughout each day in all classrooms.



Security measures and procedures are in place to ensure the safety of all our children while at AUMC. An Emergency Prepardeness Plan [EPP] has been instituted and teachers are trained to cover all emergency situations. This plan, along with blueprints of the entire building which contains highlighted rooms where children are located, is on file with the Fairfax County Police Department [Mason District Office] as well as with the Annandale Fire Department. Regular evacuation drills are practiced to prepare children for fires, tornadoes, earthquakes, shelter-in-place, and lock-down procedures. Primary, secondary, and tertiary evacuation routes are rehearsed, and primary and secondary evacuation locations established. Click here for an overview of The Emergency Preparedness Plan. The full Emergency Preparedness Plan is available for parent review upon request in the office.

The building remains locked during school hours. All parents are asked to enter through Entrance #2 where someone will be posted to monitor who enters the building during start times and dismissal times only. At all other times, it will be necessary to use the intercom to be screened and buzzed in from the office. A picture ID may be required for entry.

No child will be released to anyone other than the parent, guardian, or a person who has been designated in writing on the required Child Release Form unless prior arrangements have been made with the Director. The designee must present a government issued photo ID.



Each year an opportunity is provided for parents to have safety identification cards made through Ident-a-Kid Services of America for their children which include the child's photograph, fingerprints, and other identifying information that could assist police in the event the child was lost or missing. Participation is an optional service provided by the school.





We value the importance of the Family-Child-School connection, and practice an open-door policy that encourages parent participation. This three-way communication is key to the overall success of the whole child.


   Each month, the Director publishes a newsletter, called The Parent Connection, which informs families of upcoming school activities as well as community and AUMC events. View this month's newsletter by clicking on the Parent Newsletter Quick Link at the top of this page.


   We also publish a monthly Parent Calendar, highlighting events of the month. You may view the current Parent Calendar by clicking on the Monthly Parent Calendar Quick Link at the top of this page.


   Each year, parents are issued a Parent Handbook which states the policies, procedures, and other school information. They sign and return the last page. We suggest that it be kept in an easily accessible location to be used as a source of reference throughout the school year. 


   ELP supports our families in a variety of ways to facilitate effective parenting by providing numerous educational opportunities throughout the school year. One way we do this is through morning and evening Parent Coffees with speakers on topics of interest to families with young children. To see examples of the topics presented for Parent Coffees, click here. Call the office for information on the next scheduled Parent Coffee.


   Another resource we offer parents to help support them at home with creative ideas and solutions to issues they face everyday with young children is called Helping Children Learn. This monthly newsletter is published by The Parent Institute and sponsored by Fairfax County Public Schools. Use the link above to view the current issue. 


  Fairfax County Public Schools [FCPS], in conjunction with Fairfax County Office for Children and Family Services, offer assistance to preschool children with special needs or concerns and their families. Click on the FCPS box to get started with the types of support available to you.





We encourage parents to join the WPS & ELP Emergency Messaging System so that they may receive immediate notifications for weather closures or other information in the event of an emergency. Click on the box below for instruction on how to receive urgent information via your cell phone or your email:

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Link here to FCPS for Weather Closure Announcements or to join FCPS "News You Choose" to receive immediate notices of closures.




Click here to view..... 

Each family is given a copy of our Parent Handbook which explains the obligations and expectations on both the part of the parent and the school. Upon reading, the parent is asked to sign and return the signature [last] page to the office.  To review a copy of the Parent Handbook, click above.

*NOTE: Large file; may require a few minutes to download.





A mid-morning snack is provided to all children. An afternoon snack is provided to children who are in the Late Day classes. Snacks include at least two food groups as determined by FDA guidelines. To view the current snack menu, go to the Quick Links at the top of this page and click on Snack Menu.

Due to the high incidence of severe peanut allergies, all ELP classes are peanut-free. Snacks served are verified to contain no peanuts, peanut products, or to be prepared in a facility where peanut products were prepared. 

Accommodations and special provisions are made for all children with allergies or special dietary needs. 

For details on the Snack Policy and the Guidelines for Food Brought From Home, click here.




Enrollment for 2018-19


Click on box to view Registration Information:

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 Applications for the 2018-19 school year are currently being accepted.


Applications may be mailed, faxed, or dropped off at the WPS/ELP Office.


$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $


Click box for 2018-19 rates


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  • Monthly fees are based on an annual tuition rate which is then divided into ten equal monthly payments.
  • These monthly payments are charged September through June.
  • Payment is due on your child's first class day each month.
  • Tuition is considered late on the 15th of each month and is assessed a $25 late fee.  
  • The first tuition payment made upon enrollment serves as the security deposit, and is applied as the June 2018 tuition.
  • There is no refund of the tuition deposit in the case of withdrawal for children, regardless of the date of enrollment, after July 1st. 
  • There is no credit applied to tuition accounts when there is a change in class status (dropping a day, withdrawing from Early Morning or Extended/Late Day classes, etc.) after July 1st, regardless of the date of enrollment. 


       Sibling Discount

There is a 15% sibling discount for additional children enrolled in ELP classes.

Please note this discount does not apply to siblings enrolled in Weekday Preschool classes.





  Open House Tours & Information

 Tours are being held by appointment with the Director.

Please call the Office to schedule a time.


                   Click on box for Directions to ELP:


Directions for entering the building:

When you arrive, enter the main parking lot by the LED sign. Go to Entrance #2 and use the intercom to be buzzed into the building.

The WPS/ELP Office (room 122) is downstairs. There you will sign in and receive a visitor's badge, and then be directed to a conference room where your tour will begin. Sessions generally last 1.5 to 2 hours.




Wait Lists

A wait list is maintained  for all classes and is accommodated throughout the school year as classroom space becomes available. A new wait list is begun at registration time each year.   



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AUMC WPS & ELP are proud to be part of Harris Teeter's Together in Education program to help raise funds for our school. It's easy and it's FREE!

Simply register your VIC card one time, and then give the cashier our code1481 during checkouts and your account will be linked for the entire school year.

Once your card is linked, AUMC will receive a percentage of your Harris Teeter brand (Harris Teeter, Premier Selection, H.T. Traders, Harris Teeter Naturals, Your Pet, Hunter Farms, Highland Crest, and More Value) purchases credited back to our account.

This program does not interfere with your VIC Savings or cost you any money.






Box Tops for Education


Did you know that you can earn money for our school with products you already buy every time you go shopping?

Participation is easy:

                           1. Clip the Box Top Labels from General Mills products you purchase or already have in your pantry.

                           2. Bring them to school and drop them in the collection bin in the office or at Entrance #2.


It's that simple! ...and it adds up quickly when everyone takes part! 

Box Tops are redeemable for 10¢ each, and we collect labels throughout the entire year.   

For more information about this program and a listing of participating products to look for, click on the box below.


Click below for a full listing of participating products:







 November 10, 2018


No more consigning items!

No more Tagging or Consignor Agreements!

We will be renting tables and racks for families to sell their goods.

Just bring your item and set your prices on site!

There will also be Bake Sale at the event!


Charities will be available at the end of the sale to donate unsold items if desired.   






A packet of required forms is given upon enrollment.

If parents misplace or need additional forms, they may be downloaded here.






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Thank you for visiting! Please come again!


AUMC Early Learning Program 2018