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Chatham School

4359 39th Avenue
Oakland, CA 94619

(510) 531-1534


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

Younger group 2-3 free play with structured circle. Older group 4-5 free play with structured circle and several structured activities through out the day.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

More Information

  • Tracing paper and other writing instruments
  • A well-stocked bookcase
  • Felt and magnetic story pieces
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

More Information

  • Puzzles
  • Math games, counting pieces access to magnetic and felt numbers
Time & space more

More Information

  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
  • Globe
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

More Information

  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
  • Pets to feed every day;bserving and playing with worms, snails, spiders; water and sand play.
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
  • Music everyday and music teacher once a week.
Visual arts more

More Information

  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
  • 3D art wood building and making art out of recycle.
Physical activity more

More Information

  • A playground with climbing equipment
  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Tricycles
  • Enough room for children to move around and play and a suitable indoor alternative to the outdoor playground on rainy days
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
  • play outside under overhang; manipulatives outside along with art blocks etc.
Other subjects taught We have a Spanish and motor skills program.

From the Director:

Oral language, Nursery rhymes, Storybook, and Emerging Literacy Skills are teacher-led instruction during circle time. Music is teacher-led instruction once a week. Physical activity is teacher led 2 times a week. We have curricula offered for the ones who want to participate. Children choose rooms, then choose activities in that room then rotate to the next two rooms.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Our goal is to give children the opportunity to express themselves through play, music, art, drama, block building, language, cooking, and science with the support and guidance of nurturing and loving teachers.

A Typical Day

Fun program of drama, music, table toys, art activities, science, sensory, outside play, 2 snacks, lunch, rest.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Newsletters, report cards, parent/teacher conferences, education classes, notes going home, open house, Chatham at a glance weekly, field trips on weekends.And also actively advised parents on which kindergartens and elementary schools might provide the best education for their child and works to secure a slot for their child. Many private schools are for certain type of child. Usually with guidance the parent picks the right school.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Extra staff dedicated to handle separation
  • Parents in classroom early on

Handling Separation: From the Director

Pre visits, parent hangs around few days, then cut the strings.