From The Director

Children are born with an insatiable hunger to know the world around them. Every child understands implicitly that their job is to explore, to experiment, to take the world apart and put it back together again, in other words, to play. Playing is the most powerful way that children learn about their place in the universe. At Small Faces, teachers foster and nurture the natural drive of children to learn through play. We are curators of an environment designed to spark curiosity and ignite the imagination. We are observers of children, helping them to know their potential and offering them the tools to overcome their challenges. We are patient co-learners, allowing children the time and space to master the skills and knowledge for which they are continuously striving.

Here are just a few things that set Small Faces apart:

The purposeful play curriculum

Over the last 40+ years, Small Faces has developed a unique curriculum based on the central role of play for constructing knowledge and developing skills in young children. By seeing all children as capable, lifelong learners who move at their own pace, we seek to help children develop the skills that they will need to learn anything they wish to know. Our curriculum focuses on building skills that cultivate success across content areas: Curiosity, Initiative, Resilience, Perseverance, Leadership, Responsibility.

The environment

Small Faces has spacious classrooms curated by expert teachers to be centers of imagination. We’ve partnered with local artists to create a uniquely attractive center for children. Our large playground has been designed with input from children, parents and staff to create a challenging, engaging outdoor classroom for children of all ages filled with open ended parts that inspire team work and creativity during play.

The teaching staff

Small Faces has a well-educated and experienced teaching staff, a low teacher to student ratio (1:6 in our preschool rooms) and continuous training, planning and team meeting time built into the schedule to ensure that our teachers have the support they need to provide the best learning environment for children.

The community

Small Faces has been a part of the neighborhood community since 1981. We currently have parents and staff who attended the center as preschoolers. Annual events and classroom potlucks, art shows and more provide an opportunity for families to connect to the teachers and with each other. Small Faces depends on the positive experience of families to recommend our school to others. As a non-profit, Small Faces is dedicated to community service and puts every tuition dollar received back into the classroom.

I was lucky enough to join Small Faces in 2004 as a teacher, and I hope that you may also have the opportunity to join me in our journey: helping children unlock their potential through purposeful play.


Johnny Otto
Executive Director