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Nanny's Annex Preschool

Madison Park/Washington Park Neighborhood
Seattle, WA 98112

(206) 324-0618


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

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

From the Director:

"As early childhood educators it is not our job to decide what to teach our students but rather, to discern what they are ready to learn" The "Nanny's Philosophy"

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
  • sequencing, estimating, measuring, graphing games
Time & space more

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  • 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
  • visits from the zoo, aquarium, etc.
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
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Our program offers activities which are rarely "predominantly teacher-led" or "play based with just some structure." We have learning goals that are reached through teacher led instruction followed by play based practice and use of the material taught. We have a great deal more than "some teacher encouragement". As teachers we rotate throughout the school continuously interacting with individual students, such that during free play time there is a consistant number of children. I have checked "Other" in each category of the Conductive Environment questions as I would love to share in-depth detailed information with parents when they call me or come in for a visit!

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

We believe the best way to work with children who excel, are behind, are different, or are "normal" is as a partner with the parents so a consistent approach is achieved. As needed, we create a "team plan" with parents as we address areas of concern. For children who excel we create a plan to ensure they remain engaged and stimulated by our program. We work closely with parents on appropriate school placement, as we watch for areas in which these children might lag behind. As needed, we encourage parents to seek additional help from the professional community outside of our school setting.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

By providing loving, safe, quality care we believe we impact both the individual lives of our students as well as the future of our world.

A Typical Day

Our morning begins with free play to allow the children to settle in to school. This gives parents time to play with their child for a few minutes, or to visit with one another (we see this as a great opportunity for community building). Next we have learning circle time where we discuss health and safety concepts, good friend skills, and the theme of the week. Snack follows and then it is Art Project Time. During project, one teacher works one-on-one with each student. At the same time our other teacher engages in learning play with some children, while others enjoy free play. Outside time on our playground is great fun! We schedule this for early morning on sunny days and, as weather permits (i.e. not raining), on other days. Every day we provide group-story-time and one-on-one reading. Lunch is a time to socialize and learn some social skills. We enjoy guided play in our puppet theater with our monthly theme, and every week we have a small motor and large motor activity which we encourage every child to enjoy. We love our singing circle where we like the "oldies but goodies" and new songs each day. Periodically we have wonderful Community Helpers visit our school to share helpful health, safety, and environment education.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Every morning our curriculum, theme and art project is conveniently posted for our parents to read. I include explanations as to the reasons we choose various activities and the desired learning outcome. Daily Notes are given to parents to connect them with their child's day at school. A monthly newsletter is published to keep everyone up-to-date on the latest happenings and learning at school. A Bulletin Board is mounted with community activities and notices. Pertinent articles on child development are made available to parents each month.
Rather than crowded open houses, we invite prospective parents to visit during school hours with their child so they can see their child in our school environment. They see us as teachers and how our students relate to us, and how we relate to our students.
We have a "Parent Meet and Greet" each August so parents can connect with one another and build community.
I spend a geat deal of time talking with parents about school placement for the year after they graduate from my school.
I visit with parents at pickup time and dropoff time and encourage parents to call me with questions or concerns. In addition, if I have concerns with a child, I set up a parent meeting to problem solve and create a team plan to resolve the problem.

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
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Extra staff dedicated to handle separation
  • Parents in classroom early on

Handling Separation: From the Director

Parents are invited to bring their child in for a "refresher visit" just prior to their first day. All parents are given a "Hints and Suggestions for Drop Off" sheet prior to the first day of school. Parents are invited to stay for the first half hour or so, as needed, for the first several weeks of school. We call parents if we feel a child has given it a great effort but is beginning to run out of steam. We do this so children can finish their day on a positive note rather than being exhausted and falling apart. For some children who are not transitioning into easier drop offs, we create an individualized plan so the child has a set drop off routine each morning.