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Hagerstown Community College Children's Learning Center

11400 Robinwood Drive
Hagerstown, MD 21742

(240) 500-2322


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Accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Rated Level 5 (highest Level) in Maryland EXCELS Quality Rating System Meals provided through USDA Child and Adult Care Food Program

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

We use the Creative Curriculum for Preschool, a state endorsed curriculum framework, and also incorporate state content standards and assessments for prekindergarten. Our curriculum and teaching methods frflect the knowledge that young children learn through active manipulaiton of the environment and concrete experiences that contribute to concept development. Our program is nationally accredited by NAEYC.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

Teachers observe children and complete assessments at least 3 times a year. They plan individual goals for children and provide opportunities to practice skills in small groups or one-on-one with a teacher or aide. Accomodations are made for children with special needs.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

The Children's Learning Center program is designed to meet the developmental needs of young children in a warm and nurturing environment. Our philosophy is based on the belief that each child is unique. Experiences are provided to enrich and promote each child's physical, social, emotional, creative, cognitive and language development. Children develop a positive self-concept through a balance of self-directed and teacher-directed activities.

A Typical Day

7:00 - 8:30 arrival (free choice activities)
8:30 - 9:00 breakfast
9:00 - 9:20 Circle time - stories, songs, movement; introduction of concepts, theme
9:20 - 11:00 Center time - children choose from a variety of activities and "centers" - dramatic play, blocks, library, writing, math, science, art; small group games with teacher
11;00 - 11:15 story and/or journal writing
11:15 - 12:00 outdoor play/gross motor
12:00 - 12:30 lunch
12:30 - 1:00 transition; bathroom; books
1:00 - 3:00 quiet time
3:00 - 6:00 snack, movement & music; free play, outdoor play, dismissal

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Parents are welcome to observe or volunteer in their child's classroom. We have an open house in August just before the beginning of the new school year. Teachers offer parent conferences in the fall and in the spring to discuss each child's progress and learning goals. The program sends a monthly newsletter and has a parent resource area with handouts on parenting, safety, nutrition and other topics.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • 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
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school

Handling Separation: From the Director

Give parents information about separation anxiety (let them know it is normal) and what they can do. Children are encouraged to visit the classroom and meet the teachers before they are enrolled. Children may bring a family photo and/or security object to help them transition to school and to hold whenever they are feeling sad. Teachers reassure parents that anxiety is normal and will pass; reassure child that parent will return. Parents are told to always "say goodbye"; don't try to sneek out. Let child know what is happening to develop trust and security.