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The William Woodward Jr. Nursery School

435 East 70th Street
New York, NY 10021

(212) 744-6611


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

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

From the Director:

There is a definite structure to each day which provides children with a sense of security, knowing what will be happening. The children are always learning through planned activities and play and enjoy both teacher choice and free choice activities. The curriculum is well thought out and developed but is also geared to the specific interests and needs of a particular class. They are well prepared for ongoing schools both socially and academically.

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

Due to the background, training and expertise of our teachers and to the wonderful ratio of teacher to child, children receive a lot of individual help if needed and opportunities to further develop their strengths.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Our school is extremely nurturing and children receive a great deal
of individual attention. The staff is very professional and dedicated
to helping each child grow in every aspect of development-the emotional, social, cognitive and physical. Children are helped to develop independence, competence, good self esteem, empathy and respect for others. They are encouraged to grow as individuals and as part of our school family.
Our school is highly diverse and has at least
20 nationalities represented each year.

A Typical Day

The children have a meeting first to come together as a group and discuss what they will be working on that day. They are read to and have discussions about what was read
They then have both teacher choice and free choice activities.
They have snack and outdoor time and come together as a group at the end of the day for music and stories.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Parents attend orientation evenings and curriculum nights. They have regularly scheduled parent-teacher conferences and many opportunities to further communicate with their child's teachers. They receive frequent newsletters.
Parents are encouraged, once separation is accomplished, to visit their child's classroom.

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
  • 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
  • Small group sessions
  • Parents in classroom early on
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

The staff is extremely warm and nurturing and skilled at helping children to feel more comfortable in the school environment. They work with parents to facilitate this as well. The separation is gradual and gentle and works very well. A great deal of sensitivity is shown toward those children who have a harder time separating from their parents or caretakers.