There should be a button for all! Mrs. Debby though has really been a wonderful leader for the day school. She has really pushed to get a lot of safety measures put into the school. (key cards, fire drills, lock down drills, etc.). Debby has always been available to speak with, and has even initiated several conversations in regards to my children. She really listens to her staff, and wants the best for everyone.
I feel that every teacher has something to offer your child. The staff at Bnai are very well trained, and attend conferences quite frequently. They always have fun creative ideas. I had looked into other schools when we were thinking of moving to another area in town. When I asked what a typical day would be like, there was consistently a lot of "free time" where there would be movies etc. The teachers here have a thoughtfully planned out lesson plan for the entire day ( which I am sure that with two year olds, some of those plans probably morph through the day).
The teachers are always very supportive and take on a nurturing protectiveness of each child. They really get almost as excited as you do when they take their first steps, or when they use the potty. This positive reinforcement really helps motivate the kids to do their best.
Mitzvah projects are done very often, which help teach the children to think of others. Such as: Sending birthday cards and calling elderly people on their birthday, Collecting used clothing and baby supplies for the MIST program, Cooking dinner for the homeless, etc.
During the Shabbat services on Fridays, each class has a mini mensch. (essentially a citizen of the week). This child is chosen by different methods, but for example, in my daughters class they have puff balls that they earn for good deeds, leadership qualities, and positive behavior.
We have had the pleasure of being a part of the B'nai family for six years now, and are looking forward to another four! Our four children, three of whom are still enrolled at B'nai have had truly wonderful experiences. We are not a jewish family, however we have always felt very welcomed to join in the festivities. A few of the traditions such as our friday night shabbat ( our family game night) will continue to be a mainstay in our home for the rest of our lives. The gardening, chickens & outdoor enrichment activities really fall in line with our desire to have active, environmentally aware children. Classroom activities are very age appropriate, and although they don't promise to have your child reading by the time they are graduating pre-k, the various classroom activities reinforce the letters, colors and numbers that they are teaching. My son, who is currently in Kindergarten was extremely well prepared for school both socially and academically. We have had the opportunity to interact with, or have as a teacher, most everyone in the school. They all have one common theme to their personality…..a love for children. I have not been an active member of the PTA, but there is a strong one at the school. Though I do not attend the meetings, the PTA members get information out to everyone whether via flyers or emails. The "community" at this school is amazing, and as you can see I have a hard time finding an end point to my review. There is just too much to list.
The teachers are top-notch. This is our 4th year, and each teacher has been effective for the age group. In the early years (1-2), the focus is heavy on developing social skills and gross motor skills. In the later years (3-5) the focus seems to shift to more cognitive abilities and fine motor skills. The teachers have good temperaments and develop close relationships with the kids.
They don't really have homework until the Pre-K level. And even in Pre-K, it's one homework a week where they work on a letter - practicing to draw the letter in upper and lower case, and they draw things that start with that letter.
Kids are taught to respect each others feelings, personal space, and beliefs. I have witnessed very typical conflicts between kids (fighting over toys, sharing), and the teachers use that as a learning moment to talk it out with the kids.