This program has given support, education, community and fun to my family for the last six years! The teachers have guided us through each child’s developmental stage with resources that have helped us communicate and understand our children’s needs in such practical and loving ways. -Danielle
Why our program is great for children:
Diverse Experiences in One Familiar Setting: Most children’s programs focus on one domain of learning: whether that’s dance class, art lessons, story time, music lessons, tumbling class, cooking class, or science workshops. Our programs do it all. And they offer it all in one familiar environment full of familiar faces where the child feels comfortable and cared for.
Novelty and Repetition: Brain development research tells us that children learn best with a combination of novelty (new experiences) and repetition (when they have the opportunity to try something again and again until they master it). Our teachers bring in a wide variety of toys, activities, and challenges to encourage children to discover new things, while maintaining comforting routines and core developmental activities from week to week.
Play-based: Our programs are hands-on and experiential. At our in-person classes, teachers plan and set-up a variety of age-appropriate, developmentally stimulating activities. Children can move from one activity to the next at their own pace, moving on to the next brain-building adventure when they decide they are ready. Teachers monitor their learning, and from time to time, step in with questions or suggestions that extend the learning, providing scaffolding to help the child move to the next level of skill and understanding. For our online classes, teachers share ideas with parents for hands-on learning activities that are easy for parents to do at home and also help guide the parents in how to support their child’s learning at home.
Long-Term Relationships: Lots of other programs run in short sessions of four to six classes. Sometimes the same kids will repeat from session to session, but often it’s a new group of children each time. It’s hard for little ones to keep track of all those new faces. Our programs run for the full school year. Seeing the same children week after week allows kids to build friendships. Seeing the same adults week after week allows them to build relationships with the adults, and helps the teachers to have a deep understanding of your unique child and your family.
Children learn best when they feel connected, safe, and happy.
Close parental involvement: Parents are always welcome in the classroom – in-person or online. This gives each child the comfort and security of knowing their own parent can be there with them. It also gives children exposure to a wide range of caring adults in a safe environment, allowing them to develop skills at interacting with other adults. As a side benefit, we know children learn language more quickly when exposed to a variety of adult speakers.
Why our program is great for parents:
Parent Education: Experienced professional educators offer information that is current and research-based but also relevant to the day-to-day reality of parenting little ones. Topics are tailored to the age and needs of the families, but may include daily routines like sleep and mealtime, discipline, child development, enhancing early learning, potty training, emotional intelligence, and self-care for parents.
Individualized Advice: Parent educators and children’s teachers have the opportunity to get to know each child as an individual, and also get to know the parents. This allows them to answer questions in a highly personalized way. They can also refer on for additional services when needed.
Parent Involvement: Participating in your child’s classroom from day one encourages you to think of yourself as an active participant in your child’s learning and as an advocate for them in future classrooms. You’ll know the other children and can help your child connect with them. You’ll know what happened in class, so you can later reinforce the learning. Seeing classroom activities gives you new ideas to try at home to enhance your child’s development. Observing other children each week gives you a deeper understanding of child development, and seeing parents respond to their children shows you options for parenting style.
Peer Support and Long-Term Relationships: Parents meet with other parents over the course of many months, which allows for long-term connections. Working together in the classroom strengthens those bonds, as does the peer support gained when moms, dads, and other caregivers share the joys and challenges of caring for kids. Many instructors also encourage students to get together outside of class, to build friendships and community.
The program grows with your child: We offer classes for families with children from birth through age 9, so instead of having to search for new classes every month or every year, we’re the one-stop shop where you can always find a fun and educational option for you and your child.
Student privileges: Our parent education programs are college classes. Enrolled parents receive college credit, and can receive student ID cards, which give access to services such as Center for Career Connections, campus computer labs, campus library, and the Counseling Center, and may give access to student discounts at stores and community events. For more information, see our FAQ.
High quality at a low cost. We have better adult-child ratios than most other programs, with very experienced teachers, all at a per-hour cost that is less than most other programs in the community.
Come join us!
Learn more about our programs on this website, or by coming to an open house or for a class visit. We would love to welcome your family into our community!
Watch this video to hear what former students say about the benefits of our program.
Last Updated November 9, 2020