The West Hill School: Where Nurture Meets Nature
Discover a world where children can engage in their daily work of play and learning.
For over 50 years, The West Hill School has nurtured children ages 2 years and 7 months through PreK as they begin their educational journey. By merging its Mission along with research that suggests that children have lost their connection to the natural world, The West Hill School provides an environment “where nurture meets nature”.
The caring staff creates a world where children can engage in their daily work of play and learning, both inside the classroom and in a natural setting on the Playscape. The Playscape is comprised of intentionally designed engaging spaces dedicated to connecting children to their interests, to each other and to meaningful experiences with nature as a part of daily learning. Children have the freedom to choose from fifteen different nature – inspired areas that utilize natural materials designed to satisfy their individual interests, developmental levels and skill sets in the real world. The possibilities are endless. Children dig for worms, care for their garden, build forts, play with water and sand, climb over a hill, sit quietly with books, perform on a stage, paint, make music, dance and play running and jumping games. Learn more here!
The West Hill School’s curriculum, with a strong emphasis on the social-emotional development of the children and a nature-inspired playground approach promotes diverse learning experiences while teaching the children the social skills to work in groups, share, negotiate and resolve conflicts. The innovative and interactive curriculum has been designed to foster curiosity and wonder, respect for individual differences, honor every child’s culture and recognize that family members are partners in a child’ education. Individual, as well as small and large group classroom settings provide the children with extensive opportunities to explore the theme-based curriculum. The Second Step program supports the children’s social-emotional development and guides the children through emotion management, skills for learning, friendship building and empathy using puppets, stories, music and movement and role-playing.
It is through this development of the whole child that The West Hill School achieves its goal that each child progresses to kindergarten with the tools to achieve a balanced education that promotes self-confidence, joy of discovery, pride in accomplishment and respect for differences in our school, our community and our world.