The UNNS differs from other pre-schools in several ways.
A bucolic setting in an urban environment, the school nestles amid greenery in a quiet little cul-de-sac far from the noise and bustle of city streets. The children enjoy a private sunny garden itself surrounded by greenery (1500 square meters). Here they learn to observe nature , they plant flowers and grow vegetables. The garden is a source of fundamental discoveries which enrich their understanding of the world.
Class size is limited from 12 to 16 children, enabling the teachers to get to know each child and his/her parents particularly well. This leads to an exceptional relationship between teacher, child and parents, not often found in larger schools. The teachers meet with parents regularly to talk about their child’s development.
The child can come and play in the garden several times before he/she actually starts school.
Parents are welcome to stay at school during their child’s first few days to help him/her settle in and
adapt . Once the school year is underway, parents who so wish can arrange a time with the teacher to come into the class and conduct a workshop or join in a particular activity with the children or read stories.
The school is a place where the children come into contact with a variety of different cultures which widens their experience and broadens their outlook. They come to understand and then to respect other cultures and all that these entail: foreign languages, special customs, different kinds of food etc. On average, there are eighteen nationalities represented in any given year.
It is an international, multicultural school; the staff use English and French . The staff are all qualified teachers and they too are of various nationalities.The 2 and 3 year olds are exposed to French and English all day long. They have an English teacher twice a week. She takes half groups to do her English workshops all morning. The 4 and 5 year olds have a half day in French and a half day in English with 2 different teachers.
Preparation for Primary School
The importance of the first five years of a child’s education is today widely recognised.
Children who come to the United Nations Pre-School will therefore be spending their most formative years here, years that will have tremendous significance on the rest of their lives.
The United Nations Pre-School does not seek to prepare children for any particular primary school; it is an independent institution organised to meet the specific needs of early childhood. The school aims to teach children how to learn by providing them with a multitude of experiences and the possibility of making their first discoveries under optimum conditions. The introduction they receive to the social aspect of life and the knowledge they gain permit them to adapt to any kind of primary schooling when they leave the United Nations Pre-School.