James Marshall Parent Nursery School was established in 1954 by a group of parents who decided a preschool program was needed in West Sacramento, since none existed. They obtained approval from the Board of Trustees of the Woodland High School District, however two difficulties still existed. One was to find a building for the school and the other was to find a qualified Director/Teacher. After much effort, the old West Sacramento Land Office Building was obtained and a Director/Teacher was hired. Work parties, consisting of parents, immediately started cleaning and repairing the abandoned building, and later in the school year redecorating was undertaken. By September 1954, school was open.
In 1963 the Nursery School moved to 920 Westacre Road where it took residence in the old kindergarten classroom of Westacre School. Over the years, the preschool was moved four more times: first to a Lutheran church on Evergreen Street; next, to a classroom at Westmore Oaks Elementary School; then back to 920 Westacre Road; and finally, in 2016 it was moved across the street to a former kindergarten classroom at the Yolo Education Center to accommodate renovations to the 920 Westacre Road location. In May, 2017, the Washington Unified School District Board of Trustees voted to remove James Marshall as a district supported program, however allowing us to rent our current space as an independent organization. Although the surrounding school has changed over the years and now the supporting structure as well, JMPNS has, and will, remain the same: a place for learning, playing, and growing- for the entire family.
For the past 60 years, parent have benefited from the evening adult classes as both parents and children have enjoyed the nursery school classes. As we believe that parents are the child's first and most important teachers, James Marshall provides an opportunity for parents and formal teachers to come together to guide a child's early learning experience. It has proven to be a place where both parents and children can learn about themselves and others in an environment designed for growth and exploration.
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Our Educational Philosophy
We believe what the experts say, "a child's work is play."
In our classroom you will see elements from Reggio Emilia and Montessori, we'll engage in activities through the project approach to curriculum building, our environment is full of Loose Parts exploration, and we strive to meet each child's needs with differentiated instruction. But ALL of that happens within a structure that provides large amounts of uninterrupted free play.
Play is where the child strengthens their understanding of the world and other humans. Play is where they build their vocabulary and ability to use language to communicate. Play provides the opportunity for children to expresses themselves creatively through art mediums, story telling, music and movement. Play is the catalyst for curiosity, exploration, and experimentation.
We believe in play.
Erin Hinton wants to live in a world where money grows on trees, parents spend hours every day reading to and playing with their kids, and babies actually do come with an instruction manual. Until that day arrives, she is working hard to make our school an exemplary early educational experience for kids and parents alike.
A bachelor’s degree in music, a boat load of ECE units from Sac City Community College, and excessive amounts of caffeine, combine to make Erin’s classroom a safe, exciting, and energetic place to be. By using both her grown up wisdom and her inner child, she is able to simultaneously negotiate peace between two 3 year olds who want the same space at the carpet and do the Freeze Dance.
When she’s not wiping runny noses, answering the question “why?” for the gazillionth time, or preparing stimulating lesson plans for the parent education meetings, Erin can be found sitting on her couch with her nose in a book, listening to Led Zeppelin on vinyl.