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Columbus Park West Nursery

100 West 94th Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10025

(212) 866-6720


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Co-op

From the Director:

As a progressive school, CPWNâ??s curriculum is experiential. Children learn best by being fully engaged partners in the learning process and by acting on their environment. Our faculty support childrenâ??s innate curiosity about their world by creating an environment that invites children to explore, develop theories about their world and engage in problem solving.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

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  • 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
  • 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
Other subjects taught Columbus Park West is dedicated to creating a healthy environment in which children can grow. We believe that the key to cognitive and social development and to general mental health is language. Children growing up in New York City are surrounded by a very stimulating world. They benefit most from opportunities around them if they know how to talk about what they see and what they feel. And practice in talking about the world around them and about their feelings enables children to cope with the more challenging aspects of the world they live in. We work closely with parents and support and respect their role as the primary adults in the lives of young children. Extracted from Columbus Park West Nursery School website, March 2006

From the Director:

"We are a parent-cooperative school in which each family chooses a job that supports the functioning of the school. This creates a school community that provides the children with the sense of warmth and safety of an extended family and brings parents the support of other parents with shared values." (SOURCE:

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, CPWN is a progressive, child centered preschool program serving 25 children between the ages of 3-5-years-old. Our educational philosophy focuses on the importance of: guiding young children in developing the skills to become effective members of a community, building self esteem in children and helping them maintain their own individuality and creating an environment for children to develop a life long love of learning

Home-School Connection

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:

  • Home visits by teachers
  • Small group sessions
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

"We are sensitive to separation issues. We begin each school year with a phase-in period that includes small groups and shorter hours. We work individually with parents and their children to ease the separation, acknowledging and talking about the feelings of both the child and the parents." (SOURCE: