Walnut Avenue School serves approximately 320 students in Preschool through second grade. The staff is committed to promoting the academic, social and emotional well-being of the children. Our goal is to provide a foundation for our young children that will spark a love of learning that will last a lifetime. The school prides itself on creating an environment that is safe, nurturing and child-centered while teaching and modeling respect, responsibility, caring and citizenship.
The curriculum offered to our students is comprehensive and aligned to the Preschool Teaching and Learning Standards and Common Core State Standards. Our Preschool program utilizes the HighScope Preschool Curriculum integrating social-emotional learning content with other academic areas and allows students daily opportunities to practice skills such as emotional self-regulation and problem-solving. In grades K-2, our Language Arts Literacy program is based on a balanced literacy approach within the Reader’s and Writer’s workshop framework. Students are exposed to quality literature, informational text and many opportunities to read, write, listen, speak and use language effectively. Our mathematics curriculum in grades K-2 emphasizes developing number sense while focusing on concepts, skills, and problem solving strategies related to addition and subtraction. Math lessons are hands-on, multi-sensory and have real world application. Similarly, Science and Social Studies are taught in a manner that is interactive, life based and integrated into the other content areas.
Developing the whole child is paramount to the mission of Walnut Avenue School. We strive to personalize the learning by getting to know our students’ needs, interests and motivation for learning. Furthermore, students are also exposed to character education, art, music, library, physical education and Spanish classes weekly. Technology is also used to support the learning of the children through the use of SmartPanels, iPads and access to computers and meaningful software.
Professional improvement is continuous and ongoing learning is a priority for the Walnut Avenue staff. Teachers are involved in year-long professional development opportunities designed to enhance their knowledge and professional skills to promote personalized learning, delve deeper into the Common Core State Standards and further enhance their understanding of Reader’s and Writer’s Workshop. In addition, Walnut Avenue School is a professional development school in partnership with Seton Hall University. Our school serves as the expert/demonstration school for early literacy instruction. The teachers have taken on the dual role of mentor and peer coach: mentors of college interns and coaches to each other so as to enhance their own instructional practices. The infusion of interns in the classrooms also enables each teacher to provide increased opportunities for small group and individualized instruction.
The partnership between the home and school is critical to the success of the students. Walnut Avenue School serves the community and works side by side with parents and guardians in the best interest of their children. This partnership can be observed through large events planned through the PTA such as the Trick or Trunk or smaller events like service learning projects. More importantly, it can also be observed through the day to day interactions between teachers, parents and school staff as they work together to enhance learning for all. Communication is the cornerstone to the success of our work.
Walnut Avenue School (Preschool - Grade 2)
Celine E. McNally, Principal
370 Walnut Avenue