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Pardes Cooperative Preschool



Welcome to Pardes Cooperative Preschool!


Pardes Preschool is a play-based early childhood education program dedicated to nurturing each child’s individual development within the framework of Jewish values and traditions.

We maintain excellent child/staff ratios that exceed the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s (NAEYC) accreditation requirements of 1:6. Our small class size (a maximum of 10 students per class) enables a very individualized learning experience.

Each learning day includes indoor and outdoor play as well as teacher-facilitated large and small group learning sessions to develop each aspect of the enrolled children. The entire learning day is focused toward the development of the whole child including social-emotional, cognitive, and physical development. Classroom routines encourage autonomy while planned and unplanned activities encourage cognitive and language skills.

Guidelines suggested by Creative Curriculum, First Class Pre-K, and PJ Library Goes to School serve as the foundation of our center-based classroom setup, teaching practice, and multi-faceted student assessment, and are overlaid with seasonally-appropriate themes supporting our dual curriculum of secular and Judaic studies. 

We use a basis of Jewish values and traditions to encourage a sense a community and the ethical development of each child. Hebrew language instruction is offered weekly, and children celebrate Shabbat on Fridays with challah, grape juice, and candle lighting.  Jewish education (holidays, values/mitzvahs, Hebrew language, etc) is introduced in a manner meaningful to young children and respectful of other faiths and traditions, as many of our students are part of interfaith families or are not Jewish.

Pardes is a Hebrew word meaning "orchard". It is also an acronym that refers to four levels of learning, ranging from the literal to the esoteric. Our hope is that our preschoolers will blossom as they undertake these processes of growth and discovery in our program.


Peshat – surface or literal meaning

Remez – deep meaning beyond literal

Derash – comparative meaning

Sod – esoteric meaning




Preschool classes available for children age 2.5-4.9 years old, as of the beginning of the school year (~Aug 15th).

Children must be fully potty-trained and require minimal assistance beyond handwashing and buttons/zippers/snaps.

Monday-Thursday classes are held in a cooperative format, with a lead teacher and volunteer assistance.  Friday classes have two co-teachers and no volunteer obligations.

Morning classes are scheduled from 9am-11:45am.  Optional stay-lunch several times per week extends the school day to 12:30pm. 

Healthy seasonal snacks are provided at Pardes every day.

Lunches are packed from home, following kosher rules (no pork, shellfish, or mixed meat/dairy).



Parparim (Butterflies) class: 

  • Age 2.5-3.9  
  • Tuesday/Thursday cooperative - 9am-11:45am 
  • Optional Lunch 11:45-12:30pm on Tuesdays

Devorim (Bees) class: 

  • Age 3.5-4.9  
  • Monday/Wednesday cooperative - 9am-11:45am 
  • Optional Lunch 11:45-12:30pm on Wednesdays

Mixed-Age Shabbat class:

  • Age 2.5-4.9 
  • Fridays (traditional non-cooperative) - 9am-12:30 pm 
  • Includes time for lunch
  • Offered as an add-on to either cooperative class option

Children may be registered for any class for which they are of appropriate age,  giving 2, 3, 4, or 5 day per week enrollment possibilities.





We believe that parents are a child's first and best teacher, and encourage their involvement in their child's preschool education. Parents can also gain insight into child behavior by observing other children, develop friendships in the community, and have the opportunity to share their expertise with others.  

In our cooperative preschool, we employ a professional certified lead teacher for each class who is assisted by a volunteer parent (or grandparent or other vested individual) on a rotating basis. All teachers have a degree in early childhood education, human development, or similar, with relevant experience in a preschool setting.

Monday-Thursday classes are fully cooperative, whereas Friday classes will be taught by two professional teachers due to our unique programming that day including Hebrew Language instruction and kiddush. There are no volunteer obligations for Friday classes or lunch.

Depending on class enrollment, parents can expect to be the assistant teacher once every  4-6 weeks (for a total of 7-10 times per year).  Other volunteer duties to be assigned according to interest on a monthly or yearly basis include volunteer scheduling, classroom material sanitation, special events coordination, challah baking, preschool oversight, and other tasks.





It is best to visit Pardes prior to enrollment to see what we do!

For a tour, more information, or to register for this preschool program, please contact the director at 256.812.1548 or



Last updated 03/04/18

Sun, March 18 2018 2 Nisan 5778