Gary Church Preschool

Gary United Methodist Preschool has been providing classes for 3, 4 and 5 year-olds and pre-K children since 1969. Classes run September through May. The school complies with all DCFS regulations and the staff is approved by the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. The School is governed by the Preschool Board and is responsible to the Church Council of Gary Church.

Preschool Registration 21-22

Preschool registration is open! We are accepting applications for our 3s, 4s, and Pre-K classes. Children must be 3 or 4 by September 1, 2021. If you have questions or would like to schedule a tour, please contact the director at (630) 668-3100 or by email at .

application for admission

Our Purpose   |   The goals for each child in the Gary United Methodist Preschool are: to experience loving acceptance by adults and children outside their immediate family; develop independence, self-confidence and a strong self-image; learn appropriate social and group skills to facilitate adjustment to subsequent school settings; look forward eagerly to further schooling; learn to enjoy the challenge of accomplishing cognitive ad motor tasks appropriate to their own level of development; experience wonder and awe about God's world.


Family Involvement   |   We welcome the involvement of enrolled families to the preschool experience through our get acquainted teas, evening open house event, class parties, and fund raising projects held throughout the year. Families are encouraged, but not required, to participate in the committees planning these events and other school projects. Do you have a special talent or interest you would like to share with the preschoolers? Perhaps you would like to volunteer to help with a special craft or read a story. We love visitors! We also have opportunities to help from home with craft preparation. 

Families are kept informed about special events, needs, and concerns through a monthly newsletter and a weekly plan.

Curriculum   |   Our daily program consists of structured and unstructured activities that encompass math, language, social studies, science and nature, religion, art, music, and physical activity. Teachers are responsible for the weekly and monthly lesson plans, which are reviewed and approved by the Preschool Director.  

Our schedule includes 1 to 1 ¼ hours of free choice. Children may choose to experience art media, dramatic play, puzzles, books, play dough, small manipulative toys, sand/water play, blocks, climbing, and more. Different areas of the classroom may become a hospital, grocery store, post office, zoo, or other design to coordinate with our weekly themes. We encourage verbalization and socialization in each activity the children choose. Teachers take advantage of “teachable moments” - unplanned opportunities that arise while the children are at play.  

As a group, we enjoy a snack, complete with a prayer, and a gathering time - a period of planned activities encompassing readiness skills, concepts related to the themes, music, finger plays, and stories. Class is concluded with outdoor play in our enclosed playground, equipped with a climber, large sandbox, playhouse, and tricycles. We also have a full sized gym available for inclement weather or cold days.

Three-year-old Preschool
Tuesday and Thursday, 9:00 - 11:30 a.m.
Maximum of 18 children in a class, two teachers in each class.
A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required at the time of registration.

Four-year-old Preschool
Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 9:00 - 11:30 a.m.
Maximum of 20 children in the class, two teachers.
A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required at the time of registration.

Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 12:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Maximum of 20 children in the class, two teachers.
A non-refundable deposit of $100 is required at the time of registration.

Preschool Enrichment
Thursday, 12:30-3:00 p.m.
Maximum of 17 children in the class, two teachers.
4s, Pre-K, and Current Kindergarteners are welcomed to enroll.
$85/month; $765/year
$50/month; $450/year if also enrolled in the 4s or Pre-K class

The school calendar follows closely with that of Wheaton-Warrenville District 200.

Profile image of Kirsten  McCluskey

Kirsten McCluskey

Preschool Director, Teacher


“My favorite thing about Gary Church is our dedication to serving others in the community and beyond. Gary Church is a wonderful and supportive place for families to grow in their service to God, to each other, and others.”

Kirsten teaches at Gary Preschool, which serves children 18 months to six years of age, and became the Preschool Director in 2018. She joined Gary Church in 2014 with her husband, Patrick, and their son, Andrew. Kirsten enjoys canoeing and visiting the Boundary Waters in Minnesota every summer, as well as studying architecture and collecting vintage maps.

Profile image of Cindy  Andrzejewski

Cindy Andrzejewski

Asst. Director, Teacher


Mrs. Andrzejewski holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Special Education from Michigan State University and has taught since 2003. Mrs. Andrzejewski holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Special Education from Michigan State University. She has 14 years teaching experience and 5 years as a substitute at Gary Methodist Preschool. Cindy began teaching at Gary Preschool in 2003.

Profile image of Karen Binkerd

Karen Binkerd


Mrs. Binkerd is a graduate of North Central College with a bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education and Psychology. Previous to teaching at Gary Preschool Mrs. Binkerd has had fifteen years teaching experience in District 204, teaching at various levels. Karen has been teaching at Gary United Methodist Preschool since 2001.