The Highline/Wesley Homes Intergenerational Montessori Preschool was recently recognized by District Administration magazine. The national recognition honors school districts that are leading the way with new ideas that solve challenges.
When Wesley Des Moines, a local retirement community, found they had extra space on their campus, they turned to Highline Public Schools. The Highline/Wesley Homes Intergenerational Montessori Preschool was born.
The intergenerational preschool serves children ages 3 to 5 and is located in the center of the Wesley Homes Retirement Community in Des Moines. Thanks to a partnership with the facility, Highline rents the space for $1. Residents guide students in activities such as sewing aprons, planting flowers, writing letters, telling stories and cooking.
Families can spend time with both their children and the residents in the center.
“There are many residents’ families that say their relatives are happier because children are part of their community center on a daily basis,” says Kimberly Kinzer, executive director of Teaching, Learning and Leadership.
Students who have moved up from the program into kindergarten have exceeded their peers in school readiness.