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Important Announcement


Salem State Preschool Closing

After over 40 years, the Salem State Preschool will be closing permanently on June 15, 2019. We are no longer accepting applications.

Preschool Foundations

The Preschool Program is grounded in the Reggio Approach, which aims to enhance thinking through expressive, communicative and cognitive languages.

With the Reggio Approach, our students are encouraged to explore and discover the world around them. Our teachers, in turn, act as guides, resources, problem-posers, and partners in learning. Open-ended discussions and group projects bring together language activities, science, social studies, dramatic play, and artistic expression. This approach is designed to assist the child in seeing the interrelationships of concepts and ideas.


The Reggio Approach

The Image of the Child
Has Potential
Desire to Grow
Ability to be Amazed
Desire to Relate to Others and to Communicate

The mission of the Salem State Preschool Program is to provide a model program that is responsive to the changing needs of the children, parents, faculty, staff and community

  • For the children, we strive to maintain a safe, healthy and nurturing environment where the developmental needs of the children are met.
  • For the parents, we strive to keep the program affordable and available. Salem State students get first priority in enrollment. It is our goal to serve as a resource for support and education.
  • For staff, we strive to provide an atmosphere that will attract and retain well-trained personnel by maintaining good working conditions. We encourage a sense of cooperation and open communication among members of the Preschool community. The program maintains high educational and training requirements for staff.
  • For Salem State, we strive to provide preschool services for students, faculty, staff, and the community. We aim to cooperate with various departments, as well as other area colleges and other preschool programs, by serving as a training site for a variety of disciplines that incorporate child development, care, education, health, and safety.

Our preschool curriculum includes math, science, language arts, social studies, health and safety, and character development. And, in order to tap into the needs of young children to express ideas and messages, we engage them in studio arts—working with clay and paint; music, movement and dance, and imaginative play.

Our curriculum is arranged to include group work and a Choice Board.

The Choice Board is designed to:

  • Give each child the opportunity to select activities independently
  • Guide social development
  • Allow teaching staff to gather information on student skills, interests and group dynamics

Thanks to our wonderful location we spend lots of time exploring the wildlife of the Forest River Conservation area. We walk the trails and woodlands in search of wildflowers, birds and trees of this diverse area. Our young explorers gain an appreciation of nature.

Our project work involves in-depth investigation of a topic posed by students, teachers or parents. The research is then carried out by individual students, small groups or entire classes. Projects can last anywhere from a couple of weeks to several months. These extended time periods and the amount of investigation enable rich documentation of the children’s growth and development of skills.

The Preschool Program’s full-time staff consists of a director/teacher and teacher. Our part-time staff includes several teacher assistants.

As one of Salem State's laboratory schools, the preschool provides fieldwork, student teaching and observation opportunities for students. Guidelines for fieldwork and observation are provided.

Staff members participate in our orientation program at the beginning of each semester. The center closes during staff training days, which are approximately two days per academic year (usually held in October and February.)

The preschool is licensed through the state office of Early Education and Care and is in full compliance with staff regulations and certification requirements. Our teacher-to-child ratios are 1:6.

Office hours are Monday–Friday, 1–4 pm

Taylor Wholley Acting Director and Supervising Lead Teacher

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