Here’s an old proverb for you: A tree with strong roots laughs at storms.
Actually, we just made that up. But you’ll be thinking of that phrase when you visit Barnert Temple Preschool, Transitional Kindergarten and Day Camp in Bergen County, located on over 10 acres in Franklin Lakes, where children lay down strong roots and the exceptional is every day.
Barnert families speak of a vibe at the school and camp- the “barnerteffect” they call it. Staff, parents and the whole community welcome new families with open arms, excited about the new connections they’ll be making. And the faculty? Teachers at Barnert are excited about teaching and encourage children to be curious and engaged, while always keeping in mind that learning should be fun too.
Classrooms are spacious and airy -designed to support a Reggio Emilia inspired early childhood philosophy that “play is education” and that a big part of what children need is to build a strong sense of self on their journey of wonder and joy. Outdoor learning areas, nestled around the school and enclosed by forest give ample opportunities for children to explore the natural world through activities like hiking and gardening. Children who attend Barnert learn to think deeply and to play with purpose, which builds confidence and encourages thinking outside the box. Teachers prompt children to use their problem-solving skills to answer “what if?” while they play in multi-sensory environments that immerse them in language, literacy, math, science, and art as well as in curriculum specials which include Hebrew, Yoga, Gym, and Storytelling.
Jewish values are taught as their “internal GPS,” guiding children toward making good decisions. Whether your children are Jewish, interfaith, or of another faith, whether you believe in God or not, Barnert values become the basis for their students to become positive forces in this world. Fridays fill the building with the delicious smell of children’s individual challah-baking, while the whole school comes together to sing joyful Shabbat songs. It is here, when all are gathered together as a community of diverse people with a deep desire to see the best in each other and in the world, where one can truly feel the spirit of the #barnerteffect.
Barnert Temple prides itself on being flexible to meet the needs of modern parents. They offer two to five days, half day or full day programs, afternoon enrichment and extended day options. Children ages 15 months to 6 years are welcome.