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Stepping Stones Preschool

1329 7th Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94122

(415) 665-4189


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We believe that childhood is a time of exploration and discovery. We know that young children learn by hands-on experiences. Our staff is highly qualified to enhance each child's growth and development in a stimulating atmosphere of warmth and understanding. We help the child develop as an individual as well as learn to be part of a group.

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Teacher-Led, Reggio-Emilia

From the Director:

Our program provides a nice balance of free choice for children and teacher led instruction. We alternate both methods throughout the day. We also document the children's learning and experiences for the students and their families to enjoy.

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
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
Time & space more

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

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  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
Physical activity more

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  • 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
Other subjects taught Formal dance class is offered

From the Director:

We focus on educating the individual child. If s/he needs to be challenged we will nurture that interest and growth. If s/he needs more attention in specific areas we would provide the appropriate help.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

If children are excelling in a specific area we will nurture that interest and work with the child at his or her own pace. We will challenge the child to ensure growth.

If a child needs more help in a specific area the staff will provide one-on-one attention to ensure progress.

The individual's strengths and areas of concern are monitored throughout the child's years in our program.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

We believe that early childhood is a time of exploration and discovery. We know that young children learn by 'hands on' expereince. Our staff is highly qualified to enhance each childs growth and development in a stimulating atmosphere of warmth and understanding. Our low ratio allows each child to develop as an individual as well as part of a group, in a happy safe and nurturing environment. Our goal is to focus on individual independence, self-esteem and social skills. Stepping Stones multi-clutural curriculum is activity based to develop skills through an array of learning centers suchs as art, music , language, science, pre-reding, pre-math and socialization.

A Typical Day

Upon arrival time children are allowed free play and socialization. They can choose activities from learning centers such as: arts and crafts, music, language, science, pre-reading and pre-math. Next morning snack is served.

After snack the children go into their individual classes for circle time and project.

Outside time is next.

Lunch is at noon for one hour.
1 pm: Half Day program ends.

The full day children have a rest period from 1:00-3 pm The rest of the afternoon is a combination of FREE play and teacher led activities.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Communication with parents comes in the following forms:

Welcome Night/Open House

General meetings between the parent community and preschool


Postings.flyers at the preschool

Phone calls

Direct conversations between parents and preschool staff

Parent-Teacher conferences in the Autumn and Spring; forms for learning goals and milestones are given

Stepping Stones Website contains important parent information regarding volunteering, current and past events, most popular questions and answers, and so on...

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • 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
  • Small group sessions
  • Parents in classroom early on
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

We recommend that new families come to visit our program prior to the child's start date. This enables the child to become comfortable and familiar with the staff and environment.

During these visits photos can be taken to make a book for the family to read together in preparation for the "first day" of school.

If parents want to stay for the first few days and then lessen their time that too can be arranged.

We recommend a routine for the child each morning to make the transition easier. If the child needs to bring a transitional object that too is acceptable.