The Discovery School (TDS) at the Bay Area Discovery Museum (BADM) is a high-quality, museum-based preschool that focuses on developing children’s creative problem-solving through a STEM-rich, innovative practice that responds to children’s unique curiosities, questions, and interests. The talented and caring teachers follow an emergent curriculum rooted in research on children’s development and learning; inspired by the preschools of Reggio Emilia, Italy, TDS’s approach to learning is built on a foundational respect for children and their capability.
The school leverages its many resources—including its museum location, national park setting, and collaboration with BADM’s research division, the Center for Childhood Creativity—to foster children’s natural curiosity and introduce them to the knowledge and approaches to learning they’ll need to thrive both in school and as lifelong creative problem solvers.
Spending time outside is central to TDS’s approach to creative learning. Throughout the school year, TDS students spend time outdoors, exploring the beaches and habitats of Fort Baker, fostering a deep connection to the natural world. Our students also have access to all of the resources and exhibits of BADM, including exclusive access when the museum is closed to the public on Mondays.
As of fall 2016, TDS is officially a laboratory school. As a laboratory school, or lab school, TDS is open to top university researchers who are conducting studies on child development in a preschool setting. The lessons and research that come out of our preschool will shape the national dialogue on how educators design experiences to set kids up for lifelong success.
Our status as a lab school also benefits TDS teachers. They receive access to cutting edge research from the leading thinkers in cognitive development and early childhood education, giving them opportunity to implement this innovative research immediately in the classroom