Early Childhood

Early Childhood

Gottesman RTW Academy Lillie Brandt Early Childhood Center (ECC)

The Lillie Brandt Early Childhood Center nurtures the whole child as he/she learns to become increasingly independent during the early discovery years. The ECC offers a developmentally based program for infants through Junior Kindergarten. Our creative, engaging teachers provide a variety of project-based and interactive experiences through which children grow cognitively, socially, emotionally, physically, spiritually, and technologically. Through a values-driven approach, children build character and personal identity. Community Service and Tikkun Olam (healing the world) are infused into everything that we teach and do, encouraging children to take responsibility as both Jews and members of the greater community. Ongoing professional development opportunities keep our teachers and staff up to date on the latest research on child development strategies and child-centered projects and curricula. Every ECC child participates in global school events and The Fifth Grade/ECC monthly Buddy Program. The ECC curriculum balances strong academics with the joy of play and exploration. GRTWA children develop a life-long passion for learning that begins in the ECC.

New Grant Available for ECC Families: Greater MetroWest (GMW) Right Start provides a $1,000 gift voucher toward the cost of tuition for families enrolling their children in a Jewish preschool program for the first time. CLICK HERE for information about this amazing opportunity.

Infant Room (3–18 months)

The youngest members of the GRTWA community are loved, nurtured, and kept safe while the staff paves the way for their next steps in the ECC. Infants are integrated into ECC special events, including music, when appropriate. Flexible hours include full-day and half-day programs with options for before and after hours.

Baby Fun (3-24 months)

Children attend baby fun with a parent or caregiver, and classes meet once-a-week for 45 minutes. Baby fun helps guide parents and caregivers to choose age-appropriate activities for their youngsters through modeling language, activities, and strategies that support the growth and development of each child’s language skills, play skills, and social skills. Classes engage children in activities that help develop fine motor skills, eye-hand coordination, and large muscle movements.

A variety of cultural activities are included, such as integrated Jewish cultural, holiday, and Shabbat experiences throughout the year. Music and singing activities help children learn basics such as counting, rhythm, finger-play, call and response, creative movement, listening skills, and literacy skills. Learning new songs and singing together gives the children a sense of encouragement and self-esteem, as well as fostering the home-school connection when singing these new songs at home.

Register for the current session here.

ECC1  (18–24 months)

As an extension of our infant care option, this program supports the needs of children turning two mid-way through the school year in an independent setting. Children become familiar with the preschool setting, gaining increased comfort with group play and transitions and encouraging independence.

ECC2 (Two-year-olds)

  • Programs are available from two mornings to five full days a week.
  • A play-based, child-centered structure provides the ideal environment through which the children become a cohesive class, while moving from one developmental level to the next.
  • The theme-based two-year-old curriculum is filled with literature, art, music, manipulatives, fine and gross motor experiences, Hebrew language, and library.
  • The students use both the outdoor playground and indoor play space daily. They also have the opportunity to play in the gym.
  • The class participates in the ECC Kabbalat Shabbat program each week, and families are invited on a rotating basis.
  • Classes are led by warm, loving, and knowledgeable teachers.

ECC3 (Three-year-olds)

  • Programs are available from three mornings to five full days a week.
  • Our unique program fosters a growing sense of independence while enhancing language skills, fine and gross-motor skills, social skills, and play (social) skills.
  • Students learn to work and play together while bonding as a class family.
  • The three-year-old classroom challenges children to explore and grow while working together in small groups to achieve a common task.
  • Each week the three-year-old students enjoy special curricular enhancements in music, physical education, Hebrew immersion, library, and science (STEM).
  • Our curriculum challenges each three-year-old academically by differentiating lessons for each student’s varied skills and learning styles.
  • Daily activities encourage students to participate in experiences that allow them to get messy, have fun, and delight in the joys of childhood.
  • Three-year-old students participate in the ECC Kabbalat Shabbat program each week. Families are invited to attend on a rotating basis.
  • Classes are led by warm, loving, and knowledgeable teachers.
  Junior Kindergarten
  • Our JK program is a full day program in order to best support students for kindergarten readiness.
  • The JK program cultivates learning, risk-taking, and self-esteem through play experiences, while providing enriched academics to help children gain comfort in meeting the challenges that will support their growth from one developmental level to the next.
  • The multi-faceted literacy curriculum is designed to address the learning styles and needs of each individual child while supporting their continued engagement and success.
  • The pre-reading program includes sight word recognition, beginning decoding practices, writing, listening, comprehension, creative dramatic arts, story-telling, and whole language learning.
  • Our math readiness programs includes (but is not limited to) teaching students to count using one‐to‐one correspondence, recognizing numbers 1‐30, understanding the meaning of numerals and number concepts through number activities and art projects, rote counting 1‐100 and participating in calendar math on a daily basis.  
  • The JK classroom is set up with small-group centers that balance hands-on learning experiences in science, math, social studies, imaginative play, and literacy development.
  • The GRTWA Lower School teachers complement our JK program with special curricular additions in music, art, Hebrew language immersion, science (STEM), library, and physical education.
  • The GRTWA Lower School buddy program allows students in older grades to work with the JK students in joint reading activities. 
  • JK students participate in the ECC Kabbalat Shabbat program each week. Families are invited to attend on a rotating basis.
  • Classes are led by warm, loving, and knowledgeable teachers. 

Click here for the Junior Kindergarten Curriculum: Junior Kindergarten

The Neshama Project was created through a gift from Alan and Ricki Rubin to provide additional ongoing enrichment programming in the Lillie Brandt Early Childhood Center. This fund allows for several yearly programs that enrich the ECC curriculum and bring joy and learning to the students. Programs include puppetry, introduction to music, the arts, animals, drumming, and more.

Neshama Project

Click here to request additional information about the Lillie Brandt Early Childhood Center for your child: Inquiry Form