Early Childhood Center
Providing in-person programs for 2s, 3s, and 4s with a focus on Outdoor Learning and Emergent Curriculum
“The wider the range of possibilities we offer children, the more intense will be their motivations and the richer their experiences.”
The Early Childhood Center, as part of the Shames JCC on the Hudson, is located in the heart of the Rivertowns in Tarrytown, NY. This year we will be serving children ages three and four. Our deeply engaged staff works closely with families to stimulate and nurture children as they make the transition from home to Center. Our parent committees and family involvement create a strong sense of community and our ECC has always been a responsive and flexible place, open to new innovations in early childhood education and the always-changing needs of families.
Our mission is to:
- provide a warm and caring environment that welcomes children from diverse backgrounds.
- guide children’s play as they experiment, explore, create and pursue challenging projects.
- encourage children as they negotiate new relationships and form friendships.
- foster an appreciation of differences in both cultures and personalities.
- gently prepare children for a more formal education in the years to come.
We believe that children find meaning and joy through their play. Our strong commitment to this essential truth can be witnessed in our rich, developmentally appropriate play-based curriculum. Through play, children construct their understanding of the world and acquire the physical, intellectual, and social skills that will be the foundation of their successes throughout their lives.
The work we do in our ECC is inspired by the progressive tradition of Reggio Emilia. We do not view children as empty vessels waiting to be filled with adult-given knowledge, but as constructors of their own learning and experiences in school. The teacher’s role in this environment is to guide and facilitate, observe and document, support, and inspire.
Our philosophy for children’s programming is deeply influenced by the work of John Dewey, Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson, and Lev Vygotsky and is characterized by a deep engagement with the child at every level. Classroom schedules, space, mesmerizing materials, and the quality of a child’s relationships are carefully considered and intentional. Our learning spaces are designed to create a sense of wonder, inquiry, and human connection. We believe that the environment can act as an additional teacher.
Meet the Director
Ann was selected for her deep understanding of early childhood education and curriculum development, capacity to hire, supervise, train and inspire great teachers, and their abiding commitment to raising safe, confident, and curious children.
“If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in.”
Parenting Programs & Community
A school program is as much about creating community with parents as it is about excellent education for children.
Our offerings for parents include:
- Parenting workshops with leading experts
- Social worker
- Sensory Gym
- Parents Association
- Social programming
- Leadership opportunities
We want your child’s and your family’s experience in our Early Childhood Center to be warm and wonderful. This website cannot possibly convey the atmosphere in our programs. Please contact us to hear more about our programs and meet our wonderful staff first-hand.
At the Shames JCC Early Childhood Center, our experienced educators are dedicated to:
- Providing a warm and caring environment that welcomes children from diverse backgrounds.
- Guiding children’s play as they experiment, explore, create, and pursue challenging projects.
- Encouraging children as they negotiate new relationships and form friendships.
- Partnering with parents and families to raise healthy and confident children.
- Gently preparing children for a more formal education in the years to come.