Beginners Preschool

Welcome to Bridge School Beginners!
Addison County’s only preschool program attached to an independent elementary school!

Our Phone Number: (802) 388-3498

Bridge School Beginners is a high-quality, full-day, year-round preschool program for children ages three to five years. Our preschool program runs from 8am-3:30 pm, and aftercare is available from 3:30-5:00 pm twelve months of the year.

If you are interested in Bridge’s preschool, please contact our Beginners Director, Jenne Morton: jenne@bridgeschoolvermont.org

Philosophy

Bridge School’s preschool is child-centered and play-based, and follows social constructivist educational theory. Our emphasis is on the natural world, the community around us, and respectful interactions with each other. Students have access to our school facilities, such as our gym, greenhouse, workshop and large, outdoor play space. Preschoolers also have regular, meaningful interactions with Bridge elementary school students, and benefit from our school programming such as plays, musical performances, special events and traditions. Bridge Beginners is rated 4 out of 5 STARS, and is qualified for Universal Pre-K funding.

You may read our family handbook by clicking the following link:
Beginners Family Handbook 2020-2021

2020-2021 Bridge Beginners Preschool Calendar

Daily Schedule

8:00-9:00am Arrival and Morning Responsibilities 

  • Children arrive, put their things away and choose from a variety of places to play. This may also include outdoor play. Activities are set out that encourage children to explore different ideas, such as ramps and balls to find out about gravity. 

9:00-10:00am Snack

  • Clean up and get ready for snack. During this time, there are lots of conversations about the day, children’s favorite things to do and how to negotiate social interactions. 

10:00-10:30  Morning Meeting 

  • Morning Meeting is a time to come together as a community, and start our day intentionally together. Activities include singing, games, books and more.

10::30-12:00 Explorations and Outside Time

  • Explorations is a time of small group investigations. Our curriculum philosophy is emergent, so topics are based on children’s interests. During one week, the classroom may be transformed into a model of the universe as students learn about the planets. Another week, the classroom may become a model of forest ecosystem. During this period we will also spend time outside, exploring the natural world, and having a chance to connect with peers.

12:00-12:30 Lunch

12:30 -1:00 Reading and Quiet Activities

  • Children may choose to either read, do puzzles or join a group listening while a teacher reads aloud.

1:00-2:00 Beginners Rest Time 

  • All Beginners rest in the classroom. Children who do not sleep may read quietly on their mats or play with stuffed animals.

2:00-3:00 Afternoon Choice

  • Afternoon choices are set out by teachers. Choices may be a practical life activity such as practicing pouring, a literacy or math center, or a hands on activity such as clay or painting. Weather permitting, activities may be set up outside. 

3:00-3:30 Afternoon Responsibilities

  • Clean up room and gather things to go home.

3:30 Dismissal 

  • Children get picked up or after care begins.

After Care Schedule 

3:30-4:30

  • Children choose from small group activities and have outside playtime. Children may also choose to have their afternoon snack during this time. 

4:30-5:00

  • Children help with the end of the day cleaning. This practice shows children the responsibility and ownership of being part of a community and using a communal space.

Weekly Options & Tuition

We offer both a three, four, and five-day program, and an aftercare option until 5:00 pm, everyday. The preschool program runs from 8:00am-3:30 pm everyday, all-year, with short breaks and in-services throughout the year. After care is available from 3:30-5:00 daily. Our goal is to provide a high-quality, fun experience for families that spans 50 weeks per year.

5-Day Program, 8am-3:30pm: $230 per week

4-Day Program, 8am-3:30pm: $200 per week

3-Day Program, 8am-3:30pm: $175 per week

Daily Aftercare Program, 3:30-5:00pm: $15 per day

If children qualify for the Universal Pre-K funding, this is deducted from the tuition cost for 35 weeks of the year. For the 2020-2021 school year, this is $98.43 per week. Bridge Beginners also accepts subsidy for those who qualify.

Teachers

Jenne Morton, Beginners’ Director & Teacher

Jenne comes to Bridge School with a wealth of experiences in working with children and families. Jenne began her career by running a home child care program. After this, Jenne worked for the Parent/Child Center, where she held a variety of positions, including teacher, parent educator, Success By Six coordinator, Addison County Child Care Trainer, and Resource and Referral Specialist. These experiences gave her the needed skills to transition to Director of the College Street Children’s Program, a position she held for ten years.

Her goals for teaching are to ensure that every child is supported in their natural inquisitiveness about the world, that they feel loved in every setting, and that they are given the skills to be a caring member of a community.

Jenne lives in Monkton with her husband, a dog, cat, eight chickens, and two geese. She also loves spending time with her two children and three grandchildren, dancing, reading and being in the woods. A Master Gardener, Jenne also spends many hours in her gardens, growing vegetables, flowers and herbs, and watching the hummingbirds.

Jenne received her undergraduate degree in education from Johnson State, and her Master’s in Educational Leadership from the University of Vermont.

Julie Ferguson, Beginners’ Teacher

Julie has worked as an educator and therapist with children ages birth to seven for 30 years. Her goals for working with young children are: to provide an authentic learning environment where the child is inspired and honored; to provide the learning tools appropriate for the child’s senses in order to support healthy foundations for a lifelong love for learning; to provide a secure, well balanced, genuinely comfortable energy that fosters the development of trusting communicative relationships; to nurture each child, wholly, through their hearts, hands, and head

Julie has an AS degree in, Early Childhood Education, a BA in Psychology, and a MA in Expressive Arts Therapy. Julie was born in the heart of the Adirondack Park and raised on the shores of Lake Champlain. Julie is a lifelong resident of the Champlain Valley and lives in Westport, NY with her husband, dog and cat. Julie is a mother of two children, who are both currently both college students

Outside of school, Julie is interested in expressive Arts practices, especially music, movement, spoken word, painting, sculpting, color play, drawing, and writing. She is also interested in the cultural traditions of Northeastern Native peoples. Julie is an avid naturalist and gardener, and is especially interested in foraging for medicinal herbs and natural dyes, wildlife tracking, paddling, hiking, biodynamic gardening, marine ecology, and astronomy. Last, but not least, Julie loves fiber Art, particularly needle felting and sewing, and loves sharing these passions with students at Bridge School.

Cristi Franklin, Beginners’ Teacher

Cristi has known that she wanted to be a teacher in Vermont since she was six years old. In 2017, she graduated from Wheaton College (IL) with a BA in Spanish Education. Cristi has an Early Childhood teaching license, and a license in teaching Spanish PK-12 and English as a Second Language PK-12. After graduation, she moved to Vermont and created a Spanish program at Peoples Academy Middle Level in Morrisville, Vermont where she taught for two years.

During her time in Morrisville, Cristi enjoyed diving in to everything the school had to offer and spent time leading an after school cooking and craft club as well as choreographing for the musicals and helping to plan school-wide events. Cristi loves crafts, movement, and hands-on education, and is excited to bring her love of language and play to the Bridge School.

When she’s not teaching or studying, Cristi loves to read, bake, drink copious amounts of coffee, and spend time with her husband, Elliot, dog, Sylvie, and cat, Charcoal.

Enrollment

(802) 388-3498

If you are interested in enrolling your child as a “Beginner,” either imminently or in the future, please fill out the below Google form to put your child’s name on our waiting list. You may also email our Beginners Director, Jenne Morton: jenne@bridgeschoolvermont.org to find out about availability. Our priority for enrollment is as follows: 

    1. Children of staff of Bridge School
    2. Children who have previously been enrolled
    3. Siblings of Bridge School or Bridge School Preschool students
    4. Community members

We also seek to have a balanced classroom, so we may take into consideration ages and genders of children on the waiting list.  

Click here to fill out the waitlist form

We are committed to providing educational opportunities that meet the needs of our local families. If you are interested in Bridge’s preschool, please contact jenne@bridgeschoolvermont.org.