New York Family Camp Fairs The Blackboard Awards
  • 2017-2018 Blackboard Award Honoree: Columbus Pre-School

    Principal: Julie Kandall

    By New York Family

    Outstanding School

    Columbus Pre-School
    Principal: Julie Kandall
    Ages 2-5
    606 Columbus Avenue

    Describe your school’s core educational philosophy.

    We encourage students to explore their curiosities by developing curricula that emerges from their interests and passions. For example, if “dinosaurs” emerge as a course of study, teachers will gather books about dinosaurs to bring to class, or maybe teach a math lesson where the students create numbers sentences counting the teeth of a T-Rex. Through this, they teach the knowledge and skills to meet their developmental goals for the coming year. Our students are given opportunities to learn through hands-on exploration and play. We make sure to focus on executive functioning, the skills necessary for all people to be successful in school, work, and in the community.

    Tell us about a few of the school’s achievements or distinguishing programs.

    For our 30th Anniversary, we are taking community outreach to the next level by starting a school-home community initiative that involves parents working together with the teachers to find a local organization that will serve as our kindness curriculum for the year. Throughout the year, the teachers are given personal ‘giving’ days they can choose to use for volunteering at their class’s organization. The teachers will share their volunteering experience with the students, and together, they’ll figure out more ways to contribute—creating art to sell and raise money, cooking food for a bake sale, etc.

    What’s new?

    We started a community garden that we hope to grow into a small vegetable/fruit garden. We’re now checking the soil to make sure the plants have enough water, and making sure there is proper sunlight. We look forward to seeing our tulip bulbs blossom in the spring, and can’t wait to plant more!

    What do you love about your school?

    The warmth and welcome of this school makes it a very special place. When Billy and Peggy Gluck founded Columbus, it was out of desire to find a school for their children that felt like home—a place where they would be appreciated and well cared-for. They are active in running the school, while their children, who spent much of their lives in the classroom and gymnastics studio, are now working to uphold the mission of the school. Columbus Pre-School has been a home away from home for hundreds of families over the past 30 years.

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