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Wimpfheimer Nursery School

Vassar College

At Wimpfheimer Nursery School we view young children as the original learners, natural researchers, joyful meaning-makers, and strong contributing citizens in our community.

A child sits at a wooden table, drawing two figures on a sheet of paper.

Wimpfheimer provides a constructivist approach to early education. Learning is not passive. Children move freely, make choices, engage in true play, and form trusting relationships through which they construct knowledge and build meaningful foundational skills. 

We know that early childhood is a unique period of human development.  We respect the field of child development to support our pedagogy and practice which is specifically designed for toddlers and preschoolers.  We cherish each stage of growth and create a community that celebrates what it means to be a child. 

Our early childhood program mirrors Vassar’s values of inquiry and intellectual curiosity for our youngest citizens.  The child is the curriculum and our questions focus less on "what" to teach and more on "who" the child is, and "how" they think and grow. 

The historic laboratory nursery school has been serving children and families on the Vassar campus since 1927.  Many of the tools designed for childhood education from that period such as wooden unit blocks, child-sized easels, and sand & water tables, are still used daily by the children at Wimpfheimer.  

Wimpfheimer Nursery School provides a setting for observation and research for Vassar College students, as well as for several other Hudson Valley colleges and high schools. Being that we serve as a demonstration of innovation, we take the pedagogy and practice of teaching young children very seriously. We hold up the child’s voice, the child’s perspective, and the culture of childhood as a model for high-quality education and living a flourishing life.



8:15 a.m.–11:45 a.m.
8:15 a.m.–3:00 p.m.
8:15 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
8:15 a.m.–5:00/5:15 p.m.