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Beginnings A Toddler Program

130 East 16th Street
New York, NY 10003

(212) 228-5679


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Reggio-Emilia

Day in the Life

General School Mission

"We believe that children learn best when they feel valued and respected, and when they are motivated and passionate about what they are doing. Listening carefully to children and observing their interactions with each other and their environment helps us learn about what interests them. Based on ovservation and as understanding of child development, we guide children to investigate and express their ideas and theories about the world.

The basis of these investigations is the collaborative process, as children work together in small groups to make discoveries or achieve a common purpose. This process helps them develop critical skills such as problem-solving, perseverance, expressing oneself and listening to others. Teachers place a strong emphasis on the social learning that takes place in the classroom. At all ages, we encourage children to become aware of how their actions and words affect the world around them, and help them learn how to support and respect one another.

Since 1999, we have been studying the innovative preschool programs in the cities of Reggio Emilia and Pistoia, Italy. Their philosophy emphasizes children's competency and ability to construct their own knowledge through in-depth investigation and research.

One aspect of this approach that we are focusing on is the documentation of our work in the classroon. Through words, photographs and video, teachers interpret and reflect on children's learning experiences. Documentation enables parents to learn about their children's work and to feel connected to what is happening in the classroom. It allows teachers to articulate their thinking about children's ongoing investigations, and to determine future directions for them. It helps children to remember their ideas and shared experiences, and to know that these are valued."

--excerpted from the school's website

Home-School Connection

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • 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