My son had never been to daycare or a classroom setting before attending TCS. This past fall, he joined the "young 3s" classroom. I did not know what to expect, and I have been absolutely floored by the growth I have seen in my son after his first year. The administration and teachers work passionately to create a true child-centered community. TCS is a magical and loving space for young children, and our family is grateful to be part of the TCS community.
TCS is absolutely wonderful! My child is growing and learning through play each day. The outdoor space is unparalleled and the child centric atmosphere gives each child the confidence to explore, make friends, and learn. The teachers are caring dedicated professionals and the family involvement has enriched all of us.
At TCS students are taught intrinsic reward and respect for others, wrapped around in empathy. Children are not prompted to say sorry but to try to see the others POV and are asked in an inquiry process to think about actions. Seeing three year olds able to articulate how their feelings were hurt and to have another three year old understand the impact, is impressive and creates real change. At TCS no child is told to give another a turn-you play as long as your interest dictates and then the next child (who has put their name down on the swing list for example) assumes their place. Children play freely without adult directives; they are guided in fair play and safe play, but never an adult's idea of play. One often hears from grade school teachers that they can identify higher kevels of empathy, community and strong moral sense from TCS kids as a whole.
Three boys over eleven years, I can safely say we love this school, The community involvement is unparalleled, being in the classroom a few mornings a semester helps you appreciate what school means, what great early education can be, and how funny engaged children are. Professional, degreed teachers and although school is morning only, there are many afternoon options for working families. Classrooms are full force arenas of discovery- clean, uncluttered and everything is child sized. Each class cohort is children at the same developmental age- so reassuring for younger children to not be in with five year olds. The school evolves over time and is now under the stewardship of professional hands-on administrators who are moving with the times, with a footing rooted in TCS tradition. The outdoor spaces are park-like, and natural light floods each classroom though walls of windows. The most outdoor play in any preschool I looked at- a must for any child.
TCS is a resource for our family. As helping parents in the classroom, my husband and I have learned valuable parenting techniques from the teachers and from other parents. This time with our little people (from 2.5 to 5 or 6) is so valuable and TCS knows and cherishes that. I've also established friendships with other grownups as my sons have within each class. The TCS experience has also helped our family figure out what it wants and needs from schools at the next level.
As an early childhood teacher educator, I did a lot of searching when it was time to pick a preschool. I knew I wanted an emphasis on outdoor play and inquiry-based learning which still had structure and routines. This is our third year at Tucson Community school and I can honestly say it has been one of the best things that has happened to our son. His teachers have been kind, caring, and extremely gifted in their teaching and he has thrived socially, emotionally and academically. TCS is more than just "our son's school"-- it is our community and extended family and I can't recommend it highly enough.
My son attended TCS 2 years of preschool and is now in Kindergarten at TCS. I visited about 8 other preschools before choosing TCS, but as soon as I walked onto the campus, I knew this was the right place for us. The environment is designed for children to engage in age-appropriate early childhood activities that are important for their development- gross motor skills, social skills, fine motor skills and emotional intelligence. The teachers are AMAZING! The way they introduce concepts to the children, their patience and the way they speak to the children is magical. As a parent participation school, parents have an opportunity to be engaged in their child's experience through classroom participation and volunteering to help with fundraisers and tasks. It really does take a village to raise a child and TCS is a perfect example of that. My son knows all of his classmates parents, he feels very comfortable talking with adults because he's used to having adults around him, he has developed an incredible sense of self and a strong understanding of his influence on those around him and his environment. Academics are introduced in such a fun and creative way, that the children understand math and reading for it's purpose and are excited to participate in these activities. Gardening is a big part of the curriculum. This play-based preschool has everything we could have ever hoped for in a preschool. We will be sad to move on next year!
Tucson Community School is amazing. My son has attended for the past three years and I couldn't say enough nice things about this school.
All of the teachers are wonderful, approachable, kind, and loving. They cater to the individual child's needs and I am confident that my son is well taken care of every day.
The community school aspect is fantastic, helping families form lasting bonds between children and parents alike.
They offer both half day and full day so every family is taken care of.
All three of my boys have thrived at TCS - a beautiful open space with age-specific play yards and an old-school environment where each child is honored and encouraged. They were more than ready academically going into grade school and, as is common with TCS graduates, their teachers found their social skills and critical thinking superior to their peers. Teachers are kind and so professional, they KNOW your child and understand what would help them thrive. The new director and administration is very strong, adhering to the fundamental mission of the school but adapting to the realities of modern family life. If you have known TCS in the past, the old touchstones will be there, and some new modern features will lighten your load. I give it five stars.
I researched schools for 2 years before landing at the Tucson Community School. I was looking for a place that focused on play based learning, systems thinking, emotional literacy and a parent education program. TCS is a parent co-operative. On volunteer hours: the TCS board has created several options for parents to volunteer their time to meet the needs of two working parents. Every teacher in this school spends the time to really "know" your child. I feel confident sharing that I have toured several schools and the personal touch you receive at TCS cannot be found anywhere. Like my fellow TCS parents, I also wish that the Tucson Community School was K-12. TCS is for families seeking a strong community of parents who have a larger world view and will embrace your children as part of it.