Early Childhood Center

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Dear Current and Prospective Parents:

It’s hard to believe that the new school year is right around the corner!  It’s time for enrollment for 2020/21 and Temple Emanuel Early Childhood Center will soon be welcoming new families to our program.

Inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood learning and the progressive values of Temple Emanuel, we foster a love of exploration and discovery.  Children ages 2 to 5, along with our professional educators, share their days together in our highly-respected, full-day, year-round program.

We invite you to visit and see us in action. Call for an appointment and get a personal glimpse into the exciting and meaningful daily life of our school community.  I look forward to getting to know you and answering all of your important questions.

Melissa Williamson
Director, Early Childhood

Honoring All

Temple Emanuel Early Childhood Center embraces and welcomes the diversity of our community and encourages everyone to seek meaning and fulfillment through the rich Jewish values of our innovative, progressive Reform community.  We open our doors to everyone, including people of all backgrounds, religions, abilities, sexual orientations, interfaith and same sex couples and families.


Temple Emanuel Early Childhood Center was founded ten years ago as an integral part of a larger community that honors spiritual and intellectual growth; a deep appreciation of the natural environment; a commitment to social service and a deep respect for the diversity of our community. Starting with a blank canvas, a strong vision and a group of dedicated early childhood educators, we have grown into one of the most highly respected early childhood programs in the D.C. Metropolitan area.

Our pedagogy is based on creating a culture of collaborative learning inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education and the rich Jewish values of Temple Emanuel. Our program reflects our belief that children possess a natural capacity for joy and wonder. Our image of the child is that they are capable and competent learners. We create an enriching environment, giving our children vast opportunities to interweave cognitive and creative ways of thinking and learning.

Every morning we welcome over 100 children and their families into our community. Our students range in age from two to five years. Our school is open from 7:30 in the morning until 6 in the evening, year-round.  We are a committed group of children, parents and staff delighted to share our lives together.

Complementing our eight light-filled classrooms is an Atelier (art studio) where children explore “100 Languages.” The studio is a laboratory filled with rich materials such as clay, paints, recycled and natural materials, wire, metals and opportunities for light exploration. Through the creative use of these materials, children’s learning is made visible.

Our learning environment extends beyond our “walls” into our new beautifully landscaped Gan Emanuel. Our enormous tree-lined property and natural Playscape opens up a world of adventure and exploration where children can test their limits and physical skills. They can also have a quiet moment under a tree or in our covered pavilion reading a book or simply day dreaming. Our green-house is a place where the children begin to witness the wonder of nature. Our surrounding gardens nurtured and cared for by our children offer opportunities to appreciate the natural world around them.

The entire synagogue is truly our home. The library is an honored place where children have the opportunity to explore a world of books and have story-time with our librarian. A visit with the Rabbi in his study opens up an interesting dialogue as children question the world around them. The children are at home in the sanctuary celebrating holidays and Shabbat surrounded by parents, grandparents and special friends each week.

We invite you to join our community – to explore, discover and create!