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A little bit town and country 

A new alternative preschool comes to San Luis Obispo ... organically

Amy Rodewald is someone you want around your kids. Her maternal nature, youthful blonde exuberance, and soothing presence make kids feel completely at ease. More importantly, she wants those relaxed kids to learn (and play) together. It shouldn't be too difficult to accomplish these goals given the nurturing environment of Town & Country Day, the new preschool Rodewald opened in San Luis Obispo.

click to enlarge A SCHOOL OF THEIR OWN :  Lots of color, toys, and learning devices fill Town & Country Day. - PHOTO COURTESY OF AMY RODEWALD
  • PHOTO COURTESY OF AMY RODEWALD
  • A SCHOOL OF THEIR OWN : Lots of color, toys, and learning devices fill Town & Country Day.

# According to Rodewald, kids need to be kids but at the same time, they need to learn. Finding spiders and discovering what the eight-legged creatures eat and where they live, learning about vibrations from a simple piece of string, or getting to know dirt through gardening these are all typical curricula for the school, which employs a combination of teaching ideas, suitable for any child. One of Rodewald's many philosophies is that fun can be incorporated with learning. She sees each child as an individual and realizes that children grasp concepts in various ways.

After living the big-city life, Rodewald decided to come back to her cherished SLO out of her sheer love of the area. And after 16 years of taking care of children as a nanny, she decided she was meant for something bigger and better. Town & Country Day was born. Rodewald aims to provide a different option for parents in the area. Since many schools have some church affiliation though that can be a wonderful thing Rodewald wants to offer something more individualized.

In addition to basic pre-kindergarten skills, reading is important to Rodewald. She offers a story time and stresses the importance of books and reading early on. She doesn't have the delusion that she'll teach kids to read per se, but wants to plant life-long literature seeds. Eventually, Rodewald wants to implement an after-school program for kindergarten through sixth grade, which would provide lessons in cooking, art, and even chemistry (the emphasis of her Cal Poly degree). She also has a teaching credential from SFSU.

Rodewald guarantees a six-to-one ratio of students to teachers and will group kids by age (2 to 5 years).

"Kids have the rest of their lives to sit at a desk and learn the traditional way," she said. "Why not let kids be kids now?"

The school will be open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. until 1 p.m., with snack and lunch provided.

Join Rodewald and her new alternative preschool, Town & Country Day, at an open house on Saturday, Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, call 541-8696 or visit townandcountryday@mac.com.

Christy Heron compiled this week's Strokes and Plugs. Send your business news to kvelie@newtimesslo.com.

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