By Deborah Bostock-Kelley
When you are so positively impacted by your son’s preschool that you eventually change careers to be part of that educational process, there must be something magical about it.
Sandy and Shi Deng were so impressed with the Balanced Learning® Approach business model of Primrose School and the noticeable learning development of their son Kobe in 2009 that they did further research and opened their own franchise in Carrollwood in December 2015.
This state-of-the-art private preschool accepts children as young as 6 weeks through kindergarten and offers Primrose Explorer’s program, an afterschool program for children up to age 12. Here, learning is much more than basic academics.
“We understand the positive impact that a safe, nurturing, and academically-centered early childhood curriculum can have on children,” said Sandy. “We believe who children become is as important as what they know and we feel strongly that the foundation built early in life prepares children for future academic and personal success.”
Primrose School of Carrollwood believe in first teaching children of all ages the value of giving back to the community through their Caring and Giving Program. They teach, model and practice ways to be compassionate and generous. Throughout the year, Primrose School of Carrollwood host charitable giving events so that their students can experience the joy of giving without expectation. Their events include their Og Bountiful Book Drive and hosting Book Fairs to raise funds for books to be donated to the USF’s Reach Out and Read program, raising money for the local Children’s Home Network and Primrose Children’s Foundation during their Spring Fling Fundraising Event, hosting Primrose Promise Days to collect items for New Mommy and Babies at the Alpha House of Tampa, and raffling student-decorated pumpkins during Fall Festival to raise funds for their Caring & Giving Can-A-Thon to donate to the Carrollwood Community Food Pantry.
“We love that we have a partnership with our parents and even our grandparents at our school,” said Sandy. Primrose School of Carrollwood hosts monthly Grandparents Events, where grandparents get a chance to come in and participate in fun and interactive activities with their grandchildren.
Primrose School of Carrollwood offers a whole child approach. Whether providing fun, engaging learning techniques or delicious meals prepared by a personal chef who caters to healthy meals and special dietary needs, the school considers the child’s physical, mental, health, and emotional needs.
At Primrose School of Carrollwood, the exclusive Balanced Learning curriculum combines teacher-guided and child-initiated learning activities with a special emphasis on character development to build the right foundation for Active Minds, Healthy Bodies and Happy Hearts® in the child’s first five years.
“We know that a child’s interests can lead to exploration, discovery and understanding of the world. That’s why our Balanced Learning approach integrates science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM) throughout the day to make learning fun,” said Sandy. “Our curriculum is very scalable. We can advance or dial back based upon individual needs of each student. Teaching a skill when a child is ready allows for mastering the skill, rather than frustration.”
When children join Primrose they get to explore the Primrose Journey. In the Primrose journey there are three programs: the Wonder Program (Infants through Preschool Pathways), the Venture Program (Preschool through Kindergarten), and the Explorers Program (after-school care for ages 5-12).
Students at Primrose Schools are regularly evaluated and encouraged to apply the concepts they learn in new contexts. They use child-initiated play, where each day children engage in purposeful play to nurture their natural curiosity. Learning experiences are teacher-directed and they provide the students with background information and introduce them to key vocabulary and concepts that children are not likely to learn on their own. Along with the teacher-directed learning, they also provide teacher-guided learning to help students extend their thinking through meaningful questioning and conversation.
Primroses Wonder Program nurtures Active Minds, Healthy Bodies, and Happy Hearts. Infants begin to explore and learn through all of their senses before they even crawl. Toddlers are always on the move and at Primrose they are exploring and learning through play at every turn they take. In the Early Preschool and Preschool Pathways classrooms teachers actively partner with parents to help their children learn important independent life skills.
The Venture Program at Primrose nurtures curiosity, creativity, confidence, and compassion. Students are introduced to new information through multi-sensory experiences that encourage discovery through playful exploration, teacher-guided investigations, questioning, direct instruction and discussion. This helps children to mentally, physically, and emotional be ready to learn skills and helps them from becoming frustrated. Students are also introduced to a second language with their Mucho Mundo Spanish Program. Learning a second language supports children’s language development and helps them learn about other cultures. The Primrose Spanish program is integrated throughout the day and includes simple vocabulary, phrases, polite conversation and songs.
Primrose’s Explorers program allows students to have a place to come relax, make friends, and continue to learn and have fun. They receive homework help, establish good habits, and have plenty of time to explore creative expressions, sports, technology, drama, music, games and their leadership skills through working on community projects.
“Primrose School’s business model allows me as the franchise owner to be able to be on-site on a daily basis,” said Sandy. “I love that I can work alongside our Leadership Team members and teachers to partner with our parents and grow with our students and families.”
The Primrose School of Carrollwood is located at 1770 W Bearss Ave., and is open Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. For more information, call (813) 398-8607, go to primrosecarrollwood.com, or on Facebook at facebook.com/PrimroseCarrollwood.