For more than 20 years, KidsPark childcare centers have helped youngsters aged 2–12 boost their social and motor skills in a safe environment. The staff—certified in first-aid and CPR, background checked, and trained in early-childhood education—keeps a close watch on each kid that explores the open floor plan, where six activity areas vie for attention. In the Creation Station, projects may involve art or cooking, while the Theater promises the sound of music and stories. And school-age kids can join the Blue Crew, where they find homework help, nonviolent video games, and the chance to compare resumés with other children. KidsPark also offers preschool classes.
Run as a parent co-op, Bright Beginnings Preschool, a secular program located on the grounds of Journey Church, involves pupils' guardians in every aspect of youthful education. A cadre of energetic teachers lead classroom activities and provide continuity, and volunteer parents play backup by coming into the classroom to help on a rotating schedule. This involvement lets them bond with their kids and learn about early-childhood development while supporting teachers during games and art projects. Monthly meetings and a committee further integrate parents into the school, giving them the opportunity to discuss changes in the curriculum and plan for the school's future.
Kids aged 6 weeks to 6 years choose their own adventure at Portside Montessori. There, classrooms are divided into six sections, which correspond with six areas of learning: practical life, sensorial, language, math, cultural, and creative subjects such as art and music. All the class materials for each area are placed low to the ground where kids can reach them instead of perched up high collecting dust. Kids can easily go from area to area based on their interests at the time, exploring abstract math concepts, reading, or playing music. Teachers stand by to guide children along their journey but are careful to allow them a sense of independence.
With five branches and over 80 franchised learning centers in the United States and Canada, JEI Learning Center has found international success, including an educational TV station, thanks to its model of self-paced learning.
Prospective students begin with a diagnostic test to determine their ability level, at which point they'll be placed in groups with a maximum ratio of five students to one instructor. Sessions are held weekly, one hour per subject––there are Common Core State Standards aligned with curriculums in math, language arts, reading, writing, and problem solving––with provided workbooks and daily homework exercises.
At Kids Party Central, gaggles of children bounce upon inflatable fortresses, glide down air-filled slides, and splash around colorful ball pits in a nearly 10,000-square-foot recreation center. Throughout the week, open-play sessions reserve for public use the facility's many attractions, including floatable forts embellished with soccer balls, pirates, and animated pals from movies such as Cars. Like particularly classy kennels, KPC requires all guests to wear socks. The center also suggests that kids don nylon pants for maximum speed on the slides and that they abstain from duds featuring zippers or hooks that may scratch play surfaces. Adults are welcome to play as well, although those found not keeping an eye on their miniature companions will be put in time out.
During arguably the most vibrant and crucial period of brain development, the instructors at Growing Brilliant supply a catalyzing environment for optimal physical, intellectual, and social growth. Designed for children ranging from six months to six years, the center's programs help prepare youngsters for kindergarten, stimulate the brains of babies with diverse sensory experiences, or teach tots to share, socialize, and sip their juice boxes with their pinkies up. Varied focus areas give little ones of any age a well-rounded experience, cultivating creativity, encouraging movement and fitness, and even teaching foreign languages.