An early childhood that begins at Shipley is the first step along the path of a successful and fulfilling school journey. Our mission to inspire a love of learning and compassionate participation in the world starts with the experiential nature of PreKindergarten: a warm, cozy, loving community that builds a foundation of fundamental academic and social emotional skills.

Our preschool program plants the seeds for educational excellence that through strong relationships and freedom to explore will sprout and grow throughout students’ time at Shipley. Read on to learn the ABCs of what makes a PreKindergarten experience at Shipley the right one for your child and why you and your family belong here.
    • A: Attentive

      With a small class size, two teachers in each PreK classroom, and a respect for each child’s educational journey, we are attentive to our students’ needs.

    • B: Belonging

      Students learn about what makes them and others unique and special. At Shipley, students can be who they are—from adventure heroes and princesses, to artists and mathematicians—everyone is special, everyone belongs here.

    • C: Caring, Coed, Cozy

      Our PreK classrooms are caring, cozy, coed communities where your children feel safe and loved.

    • D: Developmentally Appropriate

      Students’ learning experiences are a combination of developmentally-appropriate reading, writing, social studies, and math lessons utilizing the multi-sensory Learning Without Tears curriculum.

    • E: Experiential Learning

      Our students don’t just study a topic, they experience it through stories, role plays, and simulations. Students are given the freedom to explore and learn about the world around them.

    • F: Foundational, Fundamental

      In our PreK, students learn fundamental and foundational skills that they need to grow and participate with compassion and empathy throughout their lives.

    • G: Greeters

      Beginning with our littlest ambassadors, our PreK students are among the first to welcome you to their classroom, greeting visitors at the door as they practice the art of communication and public speaking.

    • H: Hands-On

      We understand that hands-on, kinesthetic experiences are essential for all learners. Multi-sensory opportunities while learning, including physical manipulation of objects and materials, helps build neural connections and pathways and stronger memory. Students are building, constructing, and manipulating as they physically represent letters, numbers, and shapes or explore objects in science and other special subjects.

    • I: Independence

      Students are learning to take responsibility for the things that they can do independently. Whether hanging up their jackets, putting away their backpacks, or taking the attendance clipboard to the front desk, our students are growing their capabilities and the confidence to be independent.

    • J: Joyful

      There is nothing more joyful than a PreK classroom, where students have the freedom to explore, dress up, and play as they learn about themselves and the world around them.

    • K: Knowledgeable

      Shipley values professional development for our colleagues and supports teachers’ ongoing growth through generous funding for conferences, workshops, and the pursuit of advanced degrees.

    • L: Love of Learning

      Your child’s love of learning begins here, in the immersive, experiential environment. Through a combination of free play, hands-on activities, small group and whole group instruction, and a designed curriculum, PreK students begin to grow emergent literacy and numeracy skills.

    • M: Motor-Skills

      Our PreK students work on their large motor skills doing activities and games designed to develop Agility, Balance, and Coordination in their 30-minute PE class four times a week. A daily 30-minute outdoor recess provides additional opportunities for physical activity.

    • N: Nurturing

      Our teachers create a warm, loving, and nurturing environment, where students feel safe, secure, and ready to learn.

    • O: Oaks & Acorns

      From the moment your child becomes a member of our school, they have the opportunity to make connections and form relationships with the larger learning community. Our “Acorns,” as our PreK through first grade students are affectionately known, are paired with senior “Oaks” for regular meetings. PreK students are also paired with third-grade book buddies who read to them throughout the year.

    • P: Play

      Each spring, our PreK students put on a play for their families and other Lower School students. For 10 weeks, our PreK students participate in an artist-in-residence theater program from WolfPAC. Students learn how to project their voice and use their bodies to help tell a story, ultimately for the authentic purpose of putting on a musical play.

    • Q: Quiet Time

      Quiet time is built into each day. Following lunch, students retrieve their blankets and loveys from their cubby and rest quietly while a story is read aloud.

    • R: Relationships

      Positive relationships between students and faculty are at the heart of who we are as a School and community. Small class sizes allow our students to form tight relationships with their peers, their classroom teachers, special subject teachers, and many other adults in the building.

    • S: Social Emotional Learning

      Our students develop character and emotional agility through our weekly SEED class (Social Emotional Ethical Development). Through age appropriate stories, role plays, and videos, your child will learn how to identify and talk about emotions, understand the importance of positive relationships, and how to communicate feelings.

    • S: Shipley

      When your child joins our PreKindergarten, your family becomes part of the welcoming Shipley community and you will become an active participant in the School Family Partnership during your child’s academic journey.

    • T: Teachers

      Our teachers serve as role models, modeling a love of learning and intellectual curiosity. They recognize, respect, and care deeply about individual students and families. Our colleagues provide a physically and emotionally safe learning environment and work actively to meet the needs of each student.

    • U: Unstructured

      Our students enjoy the balance of unstructured and structured time throughout their day. During unstructured times, your child is practicing their growing skills of negotiation, communication, and socialization, while they learn to share, take turns, and get along with others.

    • V: Variety

      When your child comes to Shipley, they will have a rich variety of supplemental educational opportunities outside of their classroom. All of our students, including our PreK, participate in special subject classes each week, including art, music, science, PE, SEED, and library. Additionally, our Later Gator after school program is an extended day option with snack time, clubs, and additional outdoor activities open for enrollment to all our Lower School students.

    • W: Well-Being

      In order to fulfill our mission of love of learning and compassionate participation in the world, we strive to balance individual well-being, collective well-being, and student achievement. By focusing on the whole child, we are able to achieve educational excellence.

    • X: X Marks the Spot

      Shipley is where your child can build a foundation for educational excellence that integrates three core tenets: individual well-being, collective well-being, and academic achievement. Shipley is where your child can be their best and do their best.

    • Y: whY

      Why Shipley? Because you and your children become part of our Shipley family. We have created a safe, welcoming, caring environment where our students have the opportunity to explore who they are and who they might become. WhY Shipley? Because you belong here!

    • Z: Zigzag

      At Shipley, there is no one path to success and no Shipley mold. We value each child’s individuality and seek to learn about, develop, and celebrate their character strengths. If you would like to get started on your child’s academic journey, your path begins here.

The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.