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Northaven Cooperative Preschool

11211 Preston Road
Dallas, TX 75230

(214) 691-7666


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

From the Director:

Our curriculum nourishes, supports, and expands the development of the whole child through developmentally appropriate materials and activities in a hands-on, experience-based environment. We seek a balance of social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development as children grow in positive self-esteem, independence, and responsibility.

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
  • Flannelboard stories, folder and board games, tapes and book sets, interesting bulletin boards, print-rich environment.
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
  • Folder games, board games, counting games, songs, manipulatives.
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
  • Demonstrations, experiments, exploration, sensory table, cooking, questions
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
  • Songs, CDs and tapes; older children: field trips to dance, symphony
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
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
Other subjects taught

Day in the Life

General School Mission

The mission of the Northaven Co-operative Preschool is to provide a quality preschool that nurtures the development of the whole child and provides parents the opportunity to participate directly in the education of their young children. Northaven Co-operative Preschool of Northaven United Methodist Church is non-sectarian, valuing variety and differences in background among its families as well as deep commitment to the growth and education of children. The Co-op is non-discriminatory as to race, religion, gender, or disability of its members and employees. It is an extension into the community of the church's respect for openness in human relationships, for the worth of the individual, and for cooperation among many adults as they care for children and for each other. A co-op school endeavors to use parents in the classroom to the best of their ability and to the children's advantage. In this way, parents and teachers and children may appreciate each others' uniqueness within the group. The Co-op provides channels for communication so that skills of teaching and of parenting may be refined and the support and operation of the school may be accomplished.

A Typical Day

Children engage in free play at many areas and centers throughout the classroom. They play in our "large muscle room" and on our one-acre playground. They gather for stories, songs, group games, and snack each day. Planned activities may be individual, small group, or large group in focus.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Our school is a parent cooperative. Parents are present in their child's classrooms on a rotating basis and they help in all areas of the organization of the school. We offer feedback to parents continually and we have a semi-formal fall contact regarding adjustment to the start of school and a formal parent-teacher conference in February. Parents are always welcome in the classrooms.'The end of the year' is too late as parents make placement decisions in March.

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

Handling Separation: From the Director

Home visit by teacher to three-year-olds and older; school visit with parent for a short class for younger children; new children visit classroom with parent before school starts; parent encouraged to stay until child is comfortable.