Back to Appleton Preschools

Community Nursery School

740 East College Avenue
Appleton, WI 54911

(920) 738-0090


4 parents took the survey TAKE THE SURVEY

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

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

More Information

  • 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

More Information

  • Puzzles
  • Games
Time & space more

More Information

  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

More Information

  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
  • Sensory table and Science display board
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
  • CDs, tapes, and records
Visual arts more

More Information

  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
Physical activity more

More Information

  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
  • Indoor climbing loft/occaisional supervised outdoor activities
Other subjects taught We also work on self help skills such as: *managing outdoor apparel *cleaning up after play and snack time *hand washing and other good health habits

From the Director:

The staff at CNS loves to promote each child's creativity, inquisitiveness, and positive self-esteem. We encourage all children to feel comfortable and excited about learning and playing with their new friends. "Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is the real work of childhood." --Fred Rogers

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

We are able to give students extra help and guidance when needed. One teacher may sit with the child and assist them when a project is troubling. CNS staff provides a gentle approach so that the student's self-esteem and confidence grows.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

CNS provides a structured, developmentally appropriate program following the play-based philosophy. Our activities promote healthy emotional, social, intellectual, and physical growth.

A Typical Day

8:45-9:30 (12:30-1:15)Greeting, sharing time, encouragement of language, special projects or activities of the day, concept development, or perhaps a field trip or special visitor.
9:30-10:15 (1:15-2:00)
Free play activities such as painting, play dough, sensory table, trucks, housekeeping area, dress up, puzzles, blocks, crafts, books, etc.
Clean up time, large group activities such as music, singing, musical instruments, finger plays, calendar, or group circle games, washing hands, snack.
Large motor activities, story, preparation for going home, dismissal.
**The Tues/Thurs classes for the 3 year olds differ in that they have a shorter class period. Art and manipulative activities are less complicated, less time is spent in organized whole group activities and there is more time allotted for free play. There are no organized field trips in the 3 year old classes.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Each teacher provides a weekly newsletter. There are also bulletin boards in the hallway with educational articles, reminders, and announcements posted daily. The teachers hold one conference per year, but are available to discuss concerns at any time. Each student receives a detailed evaluation of their learning at the end of the year. We also make recommendations for services within the community if we notice a need. At the beginning of the school year we hold an Orientation night that includes a parent-teacher meeting for each class.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • 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
  • 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

Handling Separation: From the Director

We focus on the positives! The teachers will remind the students how much fun preschool is and how much we like having them at CNS. The teacher may encourage the student to come and sit by them. We'll make sure the child knows how much their parents love them and that they'll be back soon. Our nurturing staff is usually enough to alleviate the separation anxiety. We also welcome parents to stay in the room or across the hall until the issue is resolved.