A recent report in The Washington Post writes:

  • Many children are not developmentally ready to read in kindergarten, yet the Common Core State Standards require them to do just that. This is leading to inappropriate classroom practices.
  • No research documents long-term gains from learning to read in kindergarten.
  • Research shows greater gains from play-based programs than from preschools and kindergartens with a more academic focus.
  • Children learn through playful, hands-on experiences with materials, the natural world, and engaging, caring adults.
  • Active, play-based experiences in language-rich environments help children develop their ideas about symbols, oral language and the printed word — all vital components of reading.
  • We are setting unrealistic reading goals and frequently using inappropriate methods to accomplish them.
  • In play-based kindergartens and preschools, teachers intentionally design language and literacy experiences which help prepare children to become fluent readers.
  • The adoption of the Common Core State Standards falsely implies that having children achieve these standards will overcome the impact of poverty on development and learning, and will create equal educational opportunity for all children.

Early Childhood

The early childhood teachers engage in practical and artistic activities that the children can readily imitate (for example, baking, painting, gardening and hand crafts), adapting the work to the changing seasons and festivals of the year.

The teacher nurtures the children's power of imagination particular to the age. She does so by telling carefully selected stories and by encouraging free play. This free or fantasy play, in which children act out scenarios of their own creation, helps them to experience many aspects of life more deeply. When toys are used, they are made of natural materials. Pine cones, wood, cotton, silk, shells, stones and other objects from nature that the children themselves have collected are used in play and to beautify the room.

Sequencing, sensory integration, eye-hand coordination tracking, appreciating the beauty of language and other basic skills necessary for the foundation of academic excellence are fostered. In this truly natural and creative environment, the children are given a range of activities and the structure that help them prepare for the next phase of school life.

"Nurturing the whole human being - the hands, mind and heart - is an appealing concept to my family because we are complex individuals who possess multiple dimensions and facets to our personality. Sadly, conventional education diminishes our humanity by fostering only the logical and intellectual side. It shortchanges us by ignoring our unique talents and emotional/spiritual needs. Ideally, these seemingly disparate components should fit together like the pieces of a puzzle to create a human being that is happy, healthy and well balanced."   ~Current Parent


We want students to meet exciting people, try something different, discover something about themselves, and see the world from a new perspective; put simply we want students to learn.


There is an inviting atmosphere throughout our school created by happy children, engaged families, and dedicated teachers. As a parent—the opportunity to self-select your child’s peer group, one which is aligned with your family’s values and outlook on the world, is amongst the most important educational decisions you can make.


We provide unparalleled opportunities for children, by immersing them in our working farm, outdoor adventures and a community of adults who respect the natural world.


We take the best of classical education and make it relevant by intertwining the arts with academics, resulting in a synergistic experience that creates deeper meaning. No other form of education provides for an academic experience this enriching, authentic and joyful.


We provide opportunities for children to be challenged while creating an environment that allows them to be healthy, satisfied, and productive community members.


Our school includes a 200-acre farm campus, organic gardens, and a community that values well-balanced children.

A Classical Liberal Arts Education Serving Grades N-12

225 Cambridge Avenue, Garden City, NY 11530


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