About Early Horizons

Our Beginning

Early Horizons was established in 1984 by Shelly Bokman and Sue Leto Cole. Both women hold bachelor's and master's degrees in Child Development. Together they recognized a need for quality care and education of young children, as well as support for their families. Each has had three children of their own, and are now having grandchildren, allowing them to know first hand both the challenges and joys of parenthood. In addition, Shelly and Sue publish Sacramento Parent Magazine, a monthly resource for families living in the greater Sacramento area, and Dandelion, a special needs magazine serving Bay Area families. 

Our Infant Program 

The warmth of our caregivers is complemented by our specially designed indoor and outdoor environment. A variety of sights, sounds, and textures invite babies to explore in our safe setting. Our homelike atmosphere and consistent staff supports your baby’s need for emotional security. 

Using the RIE method, established by Magda Gerber, even the youngest child is treated respectfully and at their own developmental level. We do not use bouncers, swings, or playpens. At Early Horizons, children are rocked and held by their caregivers. Every child is given a primary caregiver to care for them throughout the day. Your baby will thrive in the security and consistency we offer. To keep you informed about your child’s day, we routinely record your child’s naps, eating, and activities through the app called ProCare so that you can see what and how they’re doing in real time.

Our Toddler Program

From those wobbly steps of a one-year-old to the confident gait of a two-year-old, the toddler years are both exciting and challenging. Our toddler curriculum recognizes that children in this stage are learning through movement and hands-on exploration. We offer plenty of opportunity and space for running, climbing, and jumping, as well as dramatic play, sensory art experiences, music, and stories. We encourage the language and listening skills that children need to transition into our preschool program.



Our Preschool & Pre-K Program
Early Horizons uses the “Life Start Preschool Curriculum.” This approach combines hands-on learning and basic academic skills. Children learn from interacting with materials and the world around them. Our daily lesson plans include a variety of engaging activities that develop basic cognitive skills as well as large & small motor skills. These include: pre-reading and writing activities, dramatic play, block building and manipulatives, fine motor activities, science, cooking, gardening, language (stories, fingerplays, listening activities) music and singing, manipulative math, art, and cultural and social awareness.

Parents remain involved in learning by helping with weekly activities sent home in their child’s “homework folder.”*

*Pre-K students only

Early Horizons offers multiple classrooms for the preschool age group (ages 2-5 years). These classrooms implement the same curriculum, basic structure, and nurturing care, to meet children at their developmental age level.

At the preschool level Early Horizons' curriculum is a balance between independent play and gentle guidance in an environment rich with choices. By providing children with activities that match their developmental needs and energy level, learning occurs easily and naturally. 

We prepare children for mastering basic skills by developing strong "pre-skills". To support a love for reading and writing, Early Horizons' teachers spend time reading to children and offer books for them to read on their own. We use their written name throughout the day and write other words for them so they can see their thoughts written down. To develop early mathematical skills, we first develop an understanding for one-to-one correspondence. Counting by rote to 100 does not show a significant developmental leap if they are not yet able to count out two separate objects. For science, we hope to instill a sense of curiosity, which allows children to explore and question their world. We plan an extensive daily curriculum with lesson plans that include a variety of activities that develop basic cognitive skills as well as gross and fine motor skills. Each classroom has a copy of their lesson plan available to you, so you can see what your child is enjoying each day. 

Teachers keep in touch with parents throughout the day using an app and a posted daily info sheet, as well as in depth verbal communication at the start and end of each day.  

Our School Age & After School Program

We believe that school-age children need a safe, homelike atmosphere in which to spend their out-of- school experience hours. We give your child a variety of opportunities to experience success and master new skills. Children are allowed to use their time in positive and productive ways: Sports & Games, Nature & Gardening, Arts & Crafts, Music & Dance, Free Reading, Dramatic Play, Field Trips, Homework Time, Computer & iPad Play, Science Projects, etc.

We stay open year-round with some holiday camps, and a full summer program, where our school age classroom transforms into an exciting well-rounded day camp. Activities include educational field trips with exciting destinations, special classes, and extended craft projects. Our school-age summer camp is so popular that many children just come for our summer program.

Early Horizons Licensing #'s
Infant/Toddler: 434415266
Preschool (ages 2 through entering kindergarten): 434415267
School Age: 434415268