Teaching, learning and children are at the heart of the Stephens College Children’s School (SCCS), which provides preschool and elementary schools for area families. SCCS offers small classroom settings, where children get personalized and individual attention. SCCS doubles as a lab school where education majors get real-world experience by serving as teachers’ aides to our professional teaching staff.
Our quality programs include half-day preschool and full-day preschool programs. Both preschool programs (ages 3-5) are designed to support the whole child, including social, emotional, cognitive, academic and physical growth. Children are engaged in active learning experiences throughout the day.
The elementary classroom is an authentic multi-age setting, where students are grouped by ability rather than age. The curriculum is child-driven and teacher-facilitated. In the morning, students study literacy and math, while afternoons are devoted to social studies and science inquiry, art, physical education, music and foreign language. SCCS also offers extended daycare before and after school.
For the school calender, lunch menus, photos and other updates, visit the Stephens College Children's School website.
- Children and college students have an intrinsic desire to learn and construct knowledge by interacting upon the world.
- Children and college students should be active learners who have a variety of opportunities to try out ideas they are learning in real situations.
- Classroom teachers are active facilitators who utilize a variety of methodologies and best practices.
- Education should involve the total person, including social, emotional, physical, and intellectual development with attention to feelings, attitudes and values.
- Acceptance and support of each individual and the encouragement of social and moral autonomy are central to the Stephens College Children’s School experience for students, families, faculty and pre-service teachers.
- Students learn best when exposed to a variety of practices, methods and experiences.
Stephens College Children’s School is a constructivist, holistic-based laboratory school community. It is comprised of children, families, faculty and Stephens College students. Collaboration with Columbia Public School educators provides the opportunity for developmentally appropriate educational experiences.
Children are taught by experienced, certified teachers, with Stephens College education majors as assistants.
School of Interdisciplinary Studies Dean Leslie Willey serves as director of the Stephens College Children's School. She holds a bachelor’s from Stephens and a master’s and doctorate from the University of Missouri–Columbia.
SCCS started as an experimental nursery school. The mission of this laboratory school throughout its history has been to provide college students opportunities for direct experiences with children, while providing community children with solid, research-based instruction by professors, college students and certified teachers. The school moved to its present location in 1970, the Audrey Webb Child Study Center, at 1400 Windsor St. The school was designed to house college classrooms as well as three children’s classrooms with observation booths. College students participate directly with the children in classroom activities on a variety of teaching levels while being supervised by professors and master teachers.