At Beginnings, we understand that when a child has positive feelings of self-worth and is able to recognize, express, and cope with their own emotions and those of others, they are better able to explore new areas of learning and engage more fully with the world around them. The philosophy is designed to help develop a strong sense of self by fostering the skills of emotional intelligence, which are critical for promoting academic, social, and personal success.

Grounded in learning and cognitive development

Our ECSEL method’s focus on the emotional foundations of learning is based on best practices and principles in early childhood education, child development, and research. We continually incorporate the latest research and parent feedback into a child’s day-to-day experience. Beginnings has collaborated in this research with institutions including Boston University, George Mason University, and Harvard University.

A lifetime of growth

True to founder Dr. Donna Housman’s original vision, we work to instill a love of learning in each child. All Beginnings programs focus on letting the seeds of curiosity and wonder take root. Exposure to the ECSEL curriculum at an early age nurtures these roots, helping them to blossom and continue to grow throughout each child’s lifetime.

Our Goals

  • Lay the foundation for lifelong health, learning, and success from your child’s earliest moments.
  • Provide rich experiences to help your child develop a strong, secure and healthy sense of self.
  • Empower your child to have successful, positive interactions and relationships with others.
  • Teach your child how to communicate and connect emotionally and effectively.
  • Foster your child’s skills in resiliency and self-control, helping them to deal with and mange life’s challenges.
  • Give your child the gift of a love of learning and help them to be curious, thoughtful and reflective.
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Principles

Your child’s first introduction to school influences not only their ability to learn but also their desire to learn. Beginnings School focuses on four core principles to ensure a positive introduction to learning.

 

Individual Attention

Every child at Beginnings benefits from the highest quality curriculum and programs which are actively tailored to respond to their individual needs.

 

Child Development

Emotions are our universal first language, and developing strong emotional and interpersonal skills forms the basis for all other academic development later on. Beginnings programs encourage growth in all areas of development – emotional, social, creative, physical, and cognitive – building a strong foundation for the whole child that will carry through their whole life.

 

Family Involvement and Support

Parents are frequently welcomed into the classroom to participate in daily activities, fostering continuity between learning environments at home and at school.

 

Safety

There is no greater priority than the security and safety of our children. We maintain facility-wide security systems, safety equipment, and health/security/safety procedures recommended by NAEYC and MA Dept. of Early Education and Care. In addition, all information about our families and children is handled with the highest level of confidentiality and sensitivity.

Family Involvement

Parents are the first teachers of their children’s emotions and behavior—children mirror the actions of the adults around them. Beginnings teachers and administrators deeply value our relationships with families, and respect the fundamental role that parents must play. Because children may behave differently in front of their parents than in other situations, parents can observe their children engaged in classroom activity from an observation room at the school. This allows parents to see their children without influencing behavior in the moment, and as children adjust to the classroom setting, parents can observe the shift from a stressed emotional state to a relaxed, focused and engaged state.

Parents of Beginnings School’s children are also invited to participate in sessions, often led by Dr. Donna Housman herself, designed to help them understand their own emotional responses, learn how to better model appropriate behavior and utilize some of the tools employed in the Beginnings School classrooms at home. As the primary socializers of their children’s behavior, it’s critical that lessons learned in the classroom are reinforced at home.

How we work together

How we work together:

  • At the start of the school year, teachers schedule a Home Visit for every new child enrolled in our school.
  • All families are encouraged to attend Open Houses, Curriculum Night, parent breakfasts, and many other events regularly held for families throughout the year.
  • Teachers regularly discuss your child’s day with you at pick-up, send home personalized notes, reach out via phone calls and emails, schedule conferences, and maintain individual student portfolios.
  • Families are encouraged to integrate cross-cultural insights, holiday traditions, and multi-lingual words or phrases into classroom programs. In addition, the basics of sign language are presented to the Lower School of infants and toddlers to better help your child communicate with you at home and at school.

The Beginnings Parent Association

The Beginnings Parent Association (BPA), comprised of a steering committee, sub-committees and general members, meets monthly to positively impact the school’s goals and objectives. During meetings, the BPA finds ways for Beginnings to grow as part of the community, plans events for the enrichment of the curriculum, and creates ways to solidify relationships between parents and staff to enhance the sense of family.