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Small Bears Preschool

35 Standish Circle
Wellesley, MA 02481

(781) 237-6119


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Montessori

From the Director:

The general approach to learning combines both Montessori and High Scope approaches to learning. Students are encouraged to learn at their own pace in a material rich environment. The teachers select a variety of activities and materials to put out each day at the centers to encourage particpation and keep the centers interesting. The teacher also works individually with students to model and guide children into emergent and beginning reading as well as supporting students needs and interests.

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
  • Extensive materials and games
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

More Information

  • Puzzles
  • Maniplative materials, games, blocks, beads, measuring tapes and activities, books, cash register, sorting containers, scales, etc
Time & space more

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  • Calendars and clocks
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

More Information

  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
  • Salt water aquarium, outside container gardens
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
  • Music teacher and music program
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
  • Paper mache, pipe cleaners, easels, art room with art teacher, play dough, clay, apple dolls, etc.
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 kitchen , container gardens
Other subjects taught Science: Plants, seeds, and life cycles, gardening snails, hermit crabs, and Starfish Social Studies: Friends and family Social Skills Self help skills

From the Director:

See Above

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

Teachers work closely with parents and children to assesss and monitor students overall development to encorage learning, develop skills, minimize frustration and promote a happy, healthy, caring, and safe, environment for children to learn and play.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Our goal is to help students esablish a strong foundation of learning that sets them on a raod of academic and social sucess for years to come. Students develop a love of learning and feeel good about them selves as individuals and as learners. Teachers always use developmentally appropriate practices that combine Montessori and High Scope theories of early childhood education.

A Typical Day

7:45 arrivals and free play
8:15 morning meeting, calander, and Story book reading time
9:00 Art
9:30 Teachers work 1/1 with individual students or small guided reading groups while other students move through the classroom working at any number of the centers for writing, listening, computers, dramatic play, math etc.
10:00 Snack & story Time
10:30 Recess
11:00 Music
11:30 Clean up & wash hands & lunch
12:00 Dismisssal for morning preschool
12:00-2:00 Qiiet time and Afternoon Literacy Group Independent reading, guided reading, shared reading and rotating between Listening center, computer center, and writing center for all day preschool or afternoon preschool group. Durijng this time the lead teacher meets individually with students or in small greoups for ongoing assessments and guided reading
2:00 Afternoon games and free choice activities
2:30 Recess
3:00 Cooking, measuring, and counting activities
3:30 Snack & Various activities and then dismissal

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

I communicate informally with parents daily, formaly 2-3 times a year at parent teacher conferences, periodicaly throughout the year via emails and telephone calls, and at school functions such as parent information night, Valentines Dinner Reading Night for families, PArents and Educators of Young Children(PEYC) Book Club meetings.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • 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
  • Extra staff dedicated to handle separation
  • Parents in classroom early on

Handling Separation: From the Director

We handle separation anxiety in multiple ways. First we ask parents to vist the school with their child at least twice before leaving their child. We als suggest that parents minimize their child's first day experienc by picking up early. We also suggest that parents begin talking to their child about school before beginning. We also suggest making play dates with other classmates prior to thier starting date. Other specific accomodations are discussed if furhter assistance is required.