The Old South Preschool Difference
Old South Preschool, housed on the 3rd floor of Old South Church in Boston, offers a unique developmental experience for young learners due to our flexible scheduling, commitment to emergent curriculum, our proximity to all the city offers, and our high-caliber teaching staff. Students are treated with respect, entrusted with responsibility, and encouraged to investigate their world every day in every way. We are in the business of encouraging curiosity and engaging with the world around us, so students are not only ready for Kindergarten experiences – but for life!
Families are offered flexible, price-adjusted scheduling to accommodate their busy lives. You may enroll your child for 3, 4, or 5 days per week for the school year, running from September through early June. Our school day is generally 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., but for children ages 2-3 in the Blue Room, we offer a combination schedule option attending some days 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. and others 9am-3pm.
Old South Preschool utilizes an emergent curriculum, allowing for the interests of children to help guide learning and the creation of meaningful experiences. In this way, learning is collaborative, prioritizing active participation, relationship building, flexible and adaptable methods, and inquiry.
For example, this year the children in our 4-5 year old classroom – the Red Room – developed an interest in airplanes during an investigation of transportation methods. Together, the teachers and children ran with this curiosity, building experiential activities and programming around this topic. Dramatic play gave them an opportunity to travel the world, as they carried luggage into our classroom “airplane” with seats aligned in rows. They learned about the different roles in the air travel industry, then dressed up as pilots, flight attendants, flight dispatchers and more. The class rode the airport bus together, observing what the travelers were carrying with them, and watching the planes take off. They looked at air travel from every angle – through art, science, reading, imagining, and real-world experiences.
A key part of our emergent curriculum is the utilization of play. We honor play for its capacity to access all areas of children’s development. We use play to prompt progress that expands children’s interests, resolve and societal awareness. We organize opportunities for play that take advantage of children’s magical imagination and curiosity to induce engagement for learning. Ultimately, play supports diverse learning schemes with a range of complexity that embody a fundamental consideration: respect for children as unique individuals.
Preschool in the City
With the Preschool’s location in Copley Square, classes regularly travel about the city, making visits to nearby Boston Public Library; utilizing playgrounds and parks near and far; taking neighborhood trips; and participating in programs at local facilities. The children’s outside engagement lets them claim the city as part of their environment and declare themselves as mindful, caring citizens who can contribute to society within the scope of their development. Being outside provides children with crucial safety skills, challenges and fact-finding opportunities, and intensified mental and physical engagement.
From exploring murals or mosaics in search of inspiration, to discovering history through a memorial statue visit, there is no substitute for the learning delivered by real-world experiences. Making visits inside shops to purchase replacement bolts for cots or to gather ingredients for a cooking project gives children chances to collect data for study, firsthand. Topics related to societal awareness, social justice, and responsibility practically jump off the sidewalk, presenting a broad list for discussions.
The process of traveling around easily allows children to view their world from different angles and to claim the city as their own. When young children investigate the city, their visibility helps others become aware of them as contributing citizens who declare ownership appropriate for this point in their lives.
For a small preschool like Old South, longevity of the staff is a valuable asset. Our program is fortunate to have three teams of teachers, experienced as team members and as individuals prior to joining our staff. The number of years in the field ranges from 4 to 31. Our teachers pride themselves on being perpetual students of child development and learning, their scholarly investment evident in assessments, descriptions, and planning. Professional education and commitment to the field and to the school community speak to their dedication – as does their mentorship of college interns from Lesley University each school year.
Our teachers also find immense joy in their work. Without fail, they are calm collaborators, always treating the children with respect. Our teachers honor each individual child as the full and complete human being that they are.