Statement of Guiding Principles

The Goldberg Early Childhood Center is a safe, inclusive, and respectful space built on a foundation of Jewish values that guide our everyday learning and decision-making. Our children are capable, motivated, and independent learners who explore their innate curiosities through joyful play and investigation as they seek to make meaning of the world around them. By providing tools and materials that create a flexible and engaging environment, our school invites each child to ignite their own unique sense of wonder.


Jewish Values

Our school year is split into seven different periods that are centered around Jewish Values that each class uses to develop its curriculum framework and weekly lesson plans. The seven values are: Chesed, Hachnasat Orchim, Hoda’ah, Kavod, Ometz, Kehillah and Achrayut. See English translations below.

Click here to view Translations

Hebrew Name English Translation
Chesed Kindness
Hachnasat Orchim Welcoming Guests
Hoda’ah Appreciation
Kavod Respect
Ometz Courage
Kehillah Community
Achrayut Responsibility

The rabbis teach that it is our duty to share these values with the world, including our children. One of the truly beautiful things about the education that children receive at the GECC is that it goes beyond reading, writing, number sense and scientific experimentation (though we do so much of that too!). Our students learn all these skills through the prism of these seven Jewish Values. With this spiritual and moral foundation, each child is empowered to shine his or her light into the world.


Our Staff

Education and learning is a lifelong pursuits and at the GECC, our teachers take them very seriously. In addition to attending conferences and seminars, our educators engage in weekly reflective supervision meetings and monthly staff development. Our commitment to our teachers, students, and parents is to continually grow as a learning community so that we can provide the latest research-based best practices for every child’s early childhood education.



The developmental of the whole child is of the utmost importance to us as we prepare our students to transition to elementary school and beyond. We begin this development with relationships. Our teachers’ top priority is to establish a trusting and collaborative bond with both the students and parents in their class. Through creating a connection based on mutual respect and open communication, our teachers and parents are able to share observations and information about what is happening in the classroom and at home. This ongoing, two-way exchange creates a home-to-school partnership that achieves the best possible results for your child.

Personalized Learning

Our Graduates Are…
✓ Citizens of the world
✓ Kindergarten Ready
✓ Lifelong Learners
✓ Independent Thinkers with Flexible Mindsets
✓ Advocates for Themselves and Others
✓ Engineers, Poets, Athletes and Designers


The moment you step in the door and meet our director, Tara Ohayon, you’ll know you’ve found a home. Our school community is a place where every child, every family and every educator is a part of who we are. We build our learning from the children’s lives and experiences in ways that allow them to grow not only at school, but at home with you as well. There’s nothing we take more seriously than developing the leaders of tomorrow, but don’t just take our word for it.

Image of a child

Every student in our school is viewed as a competent learner, capable of both achieving independence and actively participating in their own learning. Our teachers build learning from the children’s interests, igniting their curiosity and engendering a love of learning that lasts throughout life. Through this process our students establish both self-confidence and a strong sense of themselves as uniquely talented individuals. From learning to drink from a grown-up cup to potty training to getting dressed after swim lessons, we encourage children to become increasingly independent throughout their time at the GECC.

Meeting each child where they are

Our curriculum model provides the flexibility of assessing each child’s current development across many different domains, including language and literacy, cognitive, scientific thinking, gross and fine motor skills, social skills, emotional regulation, and more. Our educators combine the children’s developmental levels with their interests to create dynamic, engaging learning opportunities throughout the classroom. These targeted educational experiences provide students with the intrinsic motivation to learn and grow in deeply meaningful ways on their journey to kindergarten readiness.

National Explorations

Come learn and explore on Dallas’ premier natural playscape. Learning outdoors is naturally engaging to children’s active, physical and sensory style of learning. The Naturescape brings learning to life: GECC students learn by touching, seeing and doing. Outdoor learning allows children to delve deeper into self-initiated activities, which promotes curiosity, inventiveness and resilience. Learning through nature allows for endless creative possibilities. Where will your child’s creativity lead?

Staff Development

Staff Development

Did you know...

  • Our faculty has 780 years of experience, including 382 right here at the JCC.
  • 70% of our faculty have undergraduate degrees, over 20% have their MA and we even have one PhD!
  • We’ve been NAEYC accredited since 1987.
  • Our administrative team worked with the JCCA to develop the Sheva Early Learning Framework now in use at over 100 JCCs.
  • The GECC is one of only nine Sheva Lab Schools in North America.
  • Cumulatively, our staff participates in over 3500 professional development hours a year.
  • As a school, we devote over 120 hours a year to Peer-to-Peer Coaching on top of all our training and planning.

Best Teacher Practices

We are consistently conducting training that challenges our educators to continue to grow and stay current on best practices. All our trainings are based on the latest research and align with our NAEYC certification. In the past year we’ve incorporated trainings to help teachers increase children’s intrinsic motivation in learning activities, build connections between books and centers throughout the classroom, utilize music and movement in everyday teaching, develop questions that challenge children’s thinking on different developmental levels and more.

NAEYC Accredited
NAEYC strives to raise the quality of education for all children from birth through age eight. Accreditation systems are major part of NAEYC’s efforts to improve early childhood education.  Our commitment to NAEYC and their accreditation criteria allow the GFECC program to provide the best learning experiences for young children and our educators by meeting national standards of quality.