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Children's Circle Nursery School

6328 Woodman Avenue
Van Nuys, CA 91401

(818) 782-9060

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Children's Circle Nursery School was founded in 1975 to unite children, parents, and staff in a community-based nursery school. For more than three decades, the school has integrated children from many different ethnic, social, and economic backgrounds. Our goals revolve around the concepts of progressive and developmental education.

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

Infants, toddlers, and preschoolers learn best, we believe, by doing, rather than by being shown or told. We do not so much “teach” them as help them to learn. Children of this age thrive in an environment in which they can explore and experience a wide variety of age-appropriate activities, real materials, and people that are challenging and stimulating at their level of development. Whether it is painting, climbing up a ramp, working with play dough, or building with blocks, a child in the first five years is involved with the process of the activity – the doing of it, the experiencing of it.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
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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  • 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
Other subjects taught Our basic classroom activities include block building and other floor activities, a dress-up corner, table activities (puzzles, pegs, art projects) and a group meeting time. Group meeting time is an important part of the day. It is when the classroom gathers as a community to read books, share special toys from home, or talk about our feelings.

From the Director:

A mixed-age curriculum allows older children to help socialize the younger ones, while they, in turn, learn patience and caring. By providing a setting that minimizes competition, Children’s Circle creates an atmosphere in which children develop trust, independence, competency, and feelings of self-worth.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Children’s Circle endeavors to provide a setting that is inviting, safe, and child-oriented. This environment allows the child to learn about themselves and their world, to make decisions, and to gain competence backed by a maximum of support and a minimum of interference from adults. We seek to provide materials, challenges, and guidance that are appropriate to the child’s level of development in all areas.

A Typical Day

Children's Circle is open year round, with morning classes that meet Monday through Friday, from 9:00 am-12:15 pm, and an afternoon class that meets Monday through Thursday from 1:00-4:15 pm.

We offer a rest program on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons from 12:30-4:00 pm. Families can enroll their child for up to four afternoons of rest a week.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

During your child's time at Children's Circle you may request a home visit by a staff member. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to observe and interact with your child in their own environment. It is also a good time for you to bring up any questions regarding your child's growth and development, as well as their adjustment to the school community.

We try to convey basic knowledge about a child's progress on a more informal, day-to-day basis via discussions in the play yard or classroom. Parents are also welcome to schedule more formal meetings with the staff.


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Parents in classroom early on

Handling Separation: From the Director

One of the most basic yet important lessons a child will learn at the school is that they can be cared for and cared about in a new setting outside their previous experience. We think that this sense of comfort and security supports all other learning.