Educational Excellence Since 1912
Hamden Hall Country Day School
Educating students in PreSchool through Grade 12
Lower School

From Our Director Catelin Fee

"It is exciting to play a role in the young learner’s life. Our Early Childhood Program nourishes and supports children’s natural curiosity and desire to learn. Our classrooms offer a safe and nurturing space where young children can explore, create, and express ideas."

A Message From a Current Parent

"My child loves going to school. The teachers, administrators, and curriculum are fantastic. The emphasis on individualized instruction combined with a thoughtfully designed curriculum is simply unmatched by any other school in the area.Critical subjects are tailored to my child's individual level and needs; where she is advanced, she is unconstrained by the level of the other children; where she needs extra help, she has as much as she needs. Students also get plenty of art, music, and physical activity, together with learning to tinker/build, garden, and speak Mandarin. Hamden Hall also fosters a sense of self-confidence and pride and is a truly special place for a young child to develop."

Multicultural Halls!

Our Early Childhood Program includes a world language component - lessons in Mandarin Chinese. Students warm up by singing the Hello Song and greeting one another with ni hao as their Mandarin class commences. Chinese numbers from one through 10 are introduced via various hands-on activities and games. Exploring new sounds through song, movement, and projects is instructive, as language acquisition comes naturally to children when they participate in engaging, language-based activities. 

A Culture of Possibility

Amid a backdrop of specially designed and designated learning environments, our curious, active learners acquire various skills and knowledge. Our Learning Garden and Tower Garden are perfect examples of the hands-on, cross-curricular learning that is fostered at Hamden Hall. Our PreSchool, PreKindergarten, and Kindergarten students even get their own Early Childhood Playscape and Outdoor Classroom in order to run, jump, explore, and play during the school day!

Every Child is a Naturalist

Young children have an innate curiosity about nature and the world around them; nature and early childhood go hand in hand. As early childhood teachers at Hamden Hall, we strive to incorporate these elements into our classrooms to support children’s intrinsic inclination to work and play outdoors. During outdoor times, children enjoy collecting small rocks, leaves, acorns, flowers, and twigs that serve as materials in our open-ended artwork. In an effort to reconnect our children with nature, our focus is twofold: we bring nature into the classrooms and bring the children outside for more outdoor learning, exploratory experiences, and hands-on discovery. 

Learning to Play, Playing to Learn

Our program is based on a developmental approach to education. Our program is a play-based, hands-on environment where experiential learning is the foundation of all that we do. As teachers, we strive to instill this passion for learning in our youngest students. Our children are given every opportunity for exploratory activities that foster creativity, self-expression, problem solving, and the development of those important first friendships. First and foremost, we support social-emotional learning and development in the classroom. Children learn to develop a sense of self in a nurturing environment. Learning and play are linked in our classroom. Play is meaningful and intrinsically motivated. We know that children learn through play. Through a combination of individual, small and whole group lessons, combined with meaningful play experiences, children learn about the world around them.

Through a blend of love and care, thoughtful planning, and developmentally appropriate practice, our teachers work hard to create a classroom culture that is dedicated to nurturing the whole child. We provide a rich, stimulating program that fosters children's creativity, independence, and problem-solving skills so that they are well-equipped to navigate the world around them.

Social-Emotional Development

Before learning can occur, young children need to feel safe and secure in their environment. Throughout the day, children learn the skills they need to approach new things, navigate social conflicts, share, and be a part of a classroom community.

Meeting Each Child

Children are diverse learners with a variety of interests and passions. We meet children where they are through differentiated instruction and the understanding of multiple intelligences.

The Home-School Connection

Parents know their children best. We believe in developing a foundation of trust with parents that includes open communication. We work in partnership with families to provide a seamless home-school connection and a safe learning environment where their child can grow. 

Learning Through Play

Through a combination of interactive centers, individual, small group and whole group time, children are busy and engaged in learning and play. We use a thematic approach that allows us to delve into content areas of science, social studies, mathematics, and language, while also having a focus on important areas of dramatic play, art, music, world language, and physical education. 

Experience A Day In Kindergarten!

Kindergarten is a foundational milestone, and the curriculum is designed to meet each student at their unique level, celebrate learning through purposeful play that builds upon natural curiosity, and enhance the instinct to question, discover, and participate in the world.
Click here to view a day in the life of our Kindergarten students.

Ready, Set, Swim! 

Our Early Childhood Program has launched its newest initiative with swim lessons for PreSchool/PreKindergarten students during the school day at our Beckerman Athletic Center. The program helps promote water safety and increases the comfort level of the little ones in the water. Certified instructors worked with the students to learn basic swim skills and just have some fun in the pool. We are so lucky to have all of these wonderful resources on our Hamden Hall campuses!

Hamden Hall Country Day School

About Us

Hamden Hall Country Day School is a nurturing and inclusive community with a dynamic learning environment that promotes academic excellence by understanding each child and fostering their individual growth.