The Oldest Group

In the Oldest Classroom, teachers nurture children's sense of wonder, curiosity, creativity, and love of learning. The curriculum is emergent, play-based, and dynamic—adapting to each child's evolving interests and developmental goals. At the end of each day, teachers reflect and plan curriculum based on children’s experiences, challenges, and interests.

Opportunities for in-depth exploration of curriculum materials help children develop a deeper understanding and mastery of concepts. Foundational pre-academic and readiness skills are integrated throughout daily routines and developmentally-appropriate, meaningful activities.

Within the classroom community, children navigate social interactions and develop friendships. They communicate their needs and engage in social problem-solving. They begin to consider and try to understand others' perspectives and emotions. They practice self-help skills and become more confident and independent in their abilities.

Wooden classroom tables and chairs along with a water table, bookshelf, and cubbies

Developmental goals

Throughout the school year, children are working on major developmental goals.

  • Emotional

    • Recognizing, communicating, and coping with emotions
    • Learning to advocate for self and building resilience
    • Developing autonomy and self-help skills
    • Developing perseverance and learning how to ask for help when needed
  • Social

    • Feeling connected and part of a classroom community
    • Navigating social interactions and developing friendships
    • Learning to cooperate, compromise, and negotiate social conflicts
    • Developing perspective-taking, empathy, and compassion for others
  • Cognitive

    • Building observation, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills
    • Expanding their imagination and creativity
    • Increasing attention and motivation
    • Articulating thoughts and ideas
    • Learning group time skills
    • Developing and practicing pre-academic and readiness skills
  • Motor

    • Developing fine motor strength and dexterity (including writing grasp and scissor skills)
    • Learning how to take safe, appropriate challenges and risks on the playground and developing large muscles

Child Study Center

Wellesley College Child Study Center
Page Building
106 Central Street
Wellesley, MA 02481
Annie Cohen
Program Administrator