Time to Shine Preschool is a half-day  Graduates in glasses
academic preschool that started in August 2011 in the Cary/Apex area.  Our goal is to instill a love of learning in each of our students through a challenging curriculum, fun activities, and plenty of praise!

What sets us apart?


  • Phonics-based language arts and math lessons running a full year more advanced than most preschools in our area
  • Wide range of activities to reach each child in the way he or she learns best
  • Daily art projects focusing on creativity and free expression as well as listening skills, following instructions, and the fine motor skills necessary to succeed in kindergarten, such as cutting with scissors, gluing, and more
  • Handwriting lessons for every age group
  • Daily STEM activities
  • Weekly science experiments and learning opportunities
  • Simple Spanish songs and concepts
  • See our academic goals list for more!


  • An approach based on helping each child be a good friend, a good student, and a responsible member of society
  • Teaching students to clean up after themselves and take care of their classroom and their belongings
  • Helping students work out their issues and differences with their classmates by addressing problems, apologizing if needed, forgiving each other, and rebuilding relationships
  • Encouraging students to consider others' feelings and points of view
  • Daily opportunities to work with others as a team to accomplish a task
  • Show and tell every day to allow children to practice public speaking
  • Plenty of toys and imaginative play options for students to do together each day

How do we do it?

  • Small class sizes with a school-wide 8:1 student-to-teacher ratio
  • Daily teacher-led phonics and math lessons that are no more than 10 minutes long each
  • A mix of worksheets, puzzles, games, and art projects to give children multiple experiences for each concept taught
  • Time set aside each day for teachers to work with students either individually or in small groups to address each student’s learning needs and encourage and challenge each student to build on the concepts he or she has previously mastered
  • Focus on effort over achievement in order to build in each student a desire to challenge themselves academically, encouraging them to want to learn and improve their abilities

Why do we do it?

  • Because we believe in preschool-age children!  We know that these are very valuable years in which preschoolers are constantly learning and growing at a rapid rate, and we know they are capable of so much more than most people think they are!
  • Because we know what is expected in elementary school!  We hear from WCPSS kindergarten teachers that children are entering kindergarten after years of play-based preschool having not been adequately prepared for what is expected of them.  We hear sad stories of bright five year olds who start their elementary career already feeling defeated and confused because they haven't been taught to use scissors properly, haven't memorized the phonetic letter sounds, haven't been taught count a set of objects, etc. and it is heartbreaking to us.  We are committed to giving each of our students the very best start in their educational careers.  Our hard work has paid off with so many children in the Cary/Apex area.  We now have graduates up to 4th grade and their parents are telling us that they still love to read, love math, and have great confidence in their own abilities!
  • Because we want to build a love of learning in each student!
  • Because it’s FUN!

What are the eligibility requirements?

  • Students must be at least three years old on August 31st of the school year
  • Students must be able to use the restroom and wash their hands by themselves
  • Nothing else!  All students are welcome regardless of whether or not they have any prior knowledge of the alphabet, numbers, or any prior preschool experience.  That’s what we are here for!  That’s our job!  That’s our passion and we love what we do!


Some other special features of our preschool include:

  • Loving, creative, experienced teachers who truly care about their students
  • Activities centered on a weekly learning theme
  • Weekly reports to inform parents of upcoming events and learning activities
  • Parent involvement through monthly activities including shows for parents, field trips, and class parties
  • Private, secured website with parent access to calendars, class roster and contact information, and photos of the students taken throughout the week
  • CPR and First Aid trained teachers
  • An allergy-aware, peanut/tree nut free school with teachers trained in administering life-saving epinephrine

Additional services offered:


For parent reviews, please visit our Google and Facebook pages!


We are located at 1867 Lake Pine Drive in Cary, right on the Cary/Apex border near the La Cocina Mexican Restaurant and Apex Kroger on Hwy 64.


(919) 291-3802