From term papers and exams to work demands and family responsibilities, college students have a lot on their plate. For student-parents, who also have to balance the full-time job of raising a child, college can seem downright daunting.
Beginning this fall, however, Brookdale student-parents will be able to breathe a little easier. The Montessori Children’s Learning Center (MCLC), set to open Sept. 6 on the Lincroft campus, will offer a new, local option for comprehensive, competitively priced child care, with flexible scheduling and exclusive discounts available for Brookdale students.
Open to children from 12 months to six years old, the MCLC will provide a ten-month academic program running from September through June. Additional care will be offered in the mornings from 7 to 8:30 a.m. and in the evenings from 3 to 6 p.m., along with after-school enrichment programs in art, music and literacy.
Three-hour child care cycles – designed to accommodate student-parents taking classes in Lincroft – will be also offered in the morning and afternoon. Rates start at $10 an hour, with a 10 percent discount available to all current Brookdale students.
“Our scheduled programs were created with flexibility to accommodate the busy lives of our student-parents,” said MCLC director Pamela Wang. “We look forward to being a part of Brookdale’s intellectual community and are excited to bring beauty and order to the lives of children this September.”
The MCLC features newly renovated facilities and a wide range of educational tools, games and resources, including a dedicated library, arts and crafts areas, outdoor play equipment and even dinosaur fossils. Operating under the Monstessori method – a 100-year old child care model that emphasizes exploration, collaboration and the development of social, emotional and cognitive skills at an early age – the MCLC will seek to provide “an education for life,” Wang said.
“As Socrates said, young minds are not vessels to be filled. They are fires to be ignited,” said Wang, a former physics instructor who developed her passion for early childhood education while volunteering at the Matawan Montessori Academy. “Our curriculum will be focused on mindfulness, on teaching empathy, resilience, resourcefulness, self-control and confidence. Studies have shown that the earlier students develop these skills, the better prepared they are for academic success throughout their lives.”
The MCLC will feature three lead classroom teachers, a dedicated teaching assistant and instructors in reading, yoga, nutrition, art, music Spanish and other subjects. Felice Shaloum, wife of Brookdale Innovation Center designer Jonathan Shaloum, will teach art at the center. Shaloum, Wang and other MCLC staff have been working tirelessly over the summer to renovate the center, which sat vacant last year following a college-wide reorganization.
In an effort to keep rates as affordable as possible, staff members and a team of volunteers did much of the work themselves, painting, restoring flooring and even building custom furniture for the new center.
“It’s been a labor of love,” said Wang. “We have a great team of teachers here with years of experience, and we are all motivated by the same desire. We want to provide the best environment possible for children to learn and grow.”
To learn more about the Montessori Children’s Learning Center or to inquire about availability contact Pamela Wang at 732-224-2963 or email email@example.com.
Check out more photos of the new MCLC here.