Inspired by the Reggio Emilia philosophy and infused with Jewish values and traditions, The Gan Preschool’s mission is to provide an open-ended and developmentally-appropriate learning experience to guide each child in discovering their interests and learning style. For us, it’s not just about preparing them for the next stage in their educational journey—it’s about providing a meaningful learning experience during these formative years.
Community is at the heart of who we are, and it’s expressed in everything we do. It’s expressed in individual community: building a strong home-school connection by working together with the triangle of partners—teacher, parent, and child—to create a loving, warm, and rich learning experience. And it’s expressed in building a community as a whole, by sharing together in holidays, events, and everything in between.
Kindness. Empathy. Respect. Appreciation for our world and our environment.
These core Jewish values are interwoven into the fabric of The Gan Preschool. Through infusing our curriculum with the morals and ethics of Judaism and allowing them to experience its customs and traditions in an authentic way, our children develop a rich and deep appreciation for these Jewish values and how they hold meaning in their lives.
At The Gan Preschool, we recognize that, far from being the passive recipients to knowledge they are often viewed as, children are in fact filled with wonder and curiosity—and it is that wonder and curiosity that drives their learning. Every child is different, and every child is curious about different things. We therefore provide a carefully curated individualized and emergent curriculum to help promote the physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development of young children in a safe and developmentally-appropriate way. A fundamental aspect of the Reggio philosophy, emergent curriculum sees a teacher as an observer and facilitator as she guides her young learners in developing a curriculum that emerges from their interests. It is an approach that is perhaps best put by the age-old Jewish quote: “Educate a child according to their path," (Proverbs, 22:6).
We take great pride in being a Reggio-inspired school. Dating back to the small Italian town of Reggio Emilia at the conclusion of World War II, the Reggio philosophy embraces children's innate curiosity as the catalyst for their learning. In this philosophy, there are three teachers in a child’s learning: the teacher, who gently observes and guides the student in discovering their interests; the environment, which, by being open and free flowing, allows for uninterrupted playing, discovering, and learning; and the child, who learns through exploring their interests. The Gan Preschool is modeled after, inspired by, and continuously strives to emulate this philosophy.
(Note: In order to maintain our commitment to authenticity, we intentionally label ourselves as a Reggio-inspired school. This is because there are certain aspects of the Reggio philosophy that are specific to the culture of Reggio Emilia, Italy--the city in which this philosophy originated.)