Welcome to Pre-Primary at AC!

There are many early childhood education programs that address ways young children learn best. At Allendale Columbia School, our philosophy is to respond to the individual developmental needs of each child based on a healthy blend of these research-based programs.

With our low student-teacher ratio, teachers get to know their students very well and offer opportunities and experiences that provide strong readiness skills, cooperative play development, and a curious and joyful love of learning. Our certified and richly experienced teaching staff truly understand the complex developmental stage of this age group and, more importantly, loves working with our youngest students.

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  • AC Little School (ages 18-36 months)

    Allendale Columbia’s Little School is a safe, supportive, and nurturing environment that provides children 18-36 months-old with an early childhood education based on our Reggio Emilia-inspired approach.

    Through our approach, children are encouraged to follow their natural curiosity and to investigate, explore, and experiment in the world around them. Through a combination of curriculum and guided projects, new ideas and topics are introduced to foster a love of learning.

    Learn more about AC Little School
  • AC3s & Pre-K (3-4 years old)

    Because our Pre-Primary School is part of a Nursery (AC3s) to Grade 12 institution, our AC3s and Pre-Kindergarten teachers have the resources and collegial relationships to build a program that is the foundation of what is to come for their students, as well as one that is comprehensive and inspiring.

    Our Pre-Primary teachers work with our school counselor and our student support team (SST) to support students in their program.

    Additionally, “specials” classes begin in AC3s with Music, Spanish, Physical Education, Art, and STEM, so students are exposed to a variety of specialist teachers throughout the week.

    Classroom teachers work collaboratively with specialists to create interdisciplinary, thematic-based units of study. These units offer students rich, vivid connections to the world around them.

    A large, safe, and sensory-rich classroom houses the Pre-Primary School. Packed with creative learning centers, students take an active role in choosing and planning their own morning activities. Throughout the day, students engage in teacher-guided activities, including activities that build skills in:
      • reading readiness
      • number concepts
      • language development
      • large and small motor development

    Life skills are built into the everyday curriculum. Children learn how to:
      • work and play together
      • make friends
      • use appropriate and respectful words and tone of voice
      • display user-friendly body language
      • express feeling in words
      • take turns, and share
Early care is offered free of charge from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. daily, and after school care is offered through our Rainbow Room and AC After 3 p.m. programs from 2:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Have questions?

Contact our Admissions Office by calling 585.641.5344 or email

Divisions & Courses

At Allendale Columbia, we prepare students for the world they will inherit. In our trusting and responsive environment, students in nursery through grade 12 grow in confidence and develop scholastic independence.