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The Mandell School

775 Columbus Avenue
New York, NY 10025

(212) 222-2925


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One block from Central Park, the Pre School is located in a state-of-the-art facility. The classrooms are spacious and well equipped with oversized windows and high ceilings allowing for an abundance of natural light. In addition to convenient access to Central Park, the extensive outdoor terrace provides ample outdoor play space for daily exercise.

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based, Teacher-Led

From the Director:

Along with our focus on the social and emotional well-being of our students is our goal to ensure their preparedness for Kindergarten and beyond, as manifested by a deep love of learning and a strong, accessible set of skills and knowledge.

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
  • 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
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

All of our classrooms are structured to include opportunities for observation, exploration, risk taking, experimentation and problem solving. We believe that these are key elements for a child’s successful cognitive development. The development of academic preparedness is unique for each individual child and our curriculum includes many opportunities for teachers to assess the individual needs of every student. It teaches fundamental skills in a creative and dynamic way while fostering an appreciation for the values of listening, kindness, community and diversity.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

Mandell believes that children learn best with differentiated instruction. We support the concept that not all children learn the same way and that the educational
development of each child is unique and should be appreciated in the classroom.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

The Mandell School is committed to providing a nurturing educational environment for our children and their families, which through intellectual stimulation and emotional support, enables them to become responsible active citizens of the world.

Mandell challenges each of our students and their families to use their experience with us to determine how and through what means they will proactively choose to have a positive and meaningful impact on their world.

In turn, it is our responsibility to provide a blueprint for learning, consistently high expectations and a dedicated and exceptionally talented faculty. We provide these in support of the emotional, social and intellectual development of our students and their extended families. This is accomplished through passion and compassion, active exploration and the collaborative use of individual talents.

In this way, our students can build for themselves a common foundation of moral, emotional and intellectual independence that enables them to meet and exceed their individual goals.

A Typical Day

A day in our Twos Program:
Free play, circle time, snack time, story time & end of day

A Day in our Threes Program:
Free play and special projects, book and circle time, snack time, outdoor play, story time & end of day
music and library

A day in our Fours Program:
Choice time, show and tell, outdoor play, meeting, lunch, rest, music and library

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Active and involved parents are an essential part of Mandell. We have a very diverse community from a wide variety of cultural and economic backgrounds and careers. We actively work to ensure that all parents, no matter what their schedules or time constraints, have meaningful opportunities to be involved.

First and foremost, we encourage parents to be deeply involved in their own child's career at Mandell. Through its efforts, our PA not only supports the goals of the Mandell School Community but works to develop and implement avenues for families and staff to give back to the greater community around us. We are very proud of our parents and believe that their efforts are a large part of what makes Mandell such a special place.

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
  • 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
  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Small group sessions
  • Parents in classroom early on
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

Separation in our Twos Program:

Separation from a parent or a child’s caregiver is one of the first transitions a child experiences in school. This is a very important process for both the adult and the child but is generally more difficult for parents than children. Children have their own timing, and usually do a good job of separating when they are ready. We ask that each child have at least one parent with him/her on the first day of school. After that, a caregiver may attend.

We ask that the parent or caregiver stay through the first few sessions if a child has not previously separated in a school setting. This will help a child feel comfortable in the classroom. When parents and the teachers have determined that a child is ready, it is best to give a quick kiss, a big smile and some words of encouragement, and then leave quickly. This will be easier for both the child and the parent!