Little Learners with Big Potential

New Pre-Nursery to Toddler programs capture the potential of young learners at British International School of Chicago, Lincoln Park.

All parents want the most for their rapidly growing toddlers and preschoolers. To capture the cognitive potential of this age group, the British International School of Chicago, Lincoln Park has expanded its early childhood educational offerings to include new Pre-Nursery and Toddler programs.

In a newly renovated building across the street from the main Lincoln Park location, children 15 to 36 months can explore, grow and learn in an engaging environment designed specifically for this age group.

“In this foundational stage, children benefit from a formal curriculum that provides a high-quality educational experience,” says Erin Woodhams, director of admissions and marketing at the British International School of Chicago, Lincoln Park.

Here, we take a look at what the British International School of Chicago (BISC) in Lincoln Park offers for this growing age group.

Pre-Nursery to Toddler space

 Young learners build self-esteem when they are successful in their surroundings. That’s why it’s important for their first learning experiences to take place in a space designed just for their needs.

“We have built a bespoke space specific to the pre-nursery and toddler ages and their levels of development. Everything is sized just right for growing independence and individual needs,” Woodhams says. Here, Toddlers, Twos and Young Threes can explore in a safe environment that sparks creativity and maximizes social-emotional development, as well as fine and gross motor skills.

Growing independence is reflected in the right-sized play spaces and reading corners — even the toilets are an appropriate size for the small child.

“Our teachers recognize the space as flexible and dynamic for the thematic International Early Years Curriculum, and everything evolves with the theme,” Woodhams says, adding that BISC-Lincoln Park is accredited in both the International Primary Curriculum and the International Early Years Curriculum. Students at BISC Lincoln Park go on to attend the sister BISC-South Loop for middle and upper years.

At every grade, the same strict qualifications and standards apply for teacher recruitment, which means that children will always receive the highest quality education.

Unique curriculum

In the Toddler, Twos and Young Threes classrooms — as well as the nearby classrooms of the 3- to 11-year-old students, children enjoy an academic journey that includes specialized classes in French and Spanish, music, art, sensory play, STEAM construction and phonics. A collaboration with the Juilliard School means they learn dance and creative movement. Environmental walks engage science inquiry skills.

“Our curriculum is more than play-based, but offers specialized instruction that advances formally with each grade,” Woodhams says. “This is not at an additional cost, but integrated into the international curriculum and offers a great start to school that families really appreciate.”

The rich diversity of Chicago provides an organic blend of backgrounds and cultures at BISC. “For families that love culture and diversity, this is a great fit,” Woodhams says.

Your child’s day

School days start at 8 a.m. and run to 3:30 p.m., and available before- and after-care options extend the day from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Families can opt for two-, three-, or five-day a week schedules. Half-days are available, too.

Lunch is prepared in-house and served family-style, offering social and healthy eating opportunities. Students practice their independence by setting their own place and cleaning up after themselves for lunch and snack.

“The best way to experience our unique environment for Toddlers, Twos and Young Threes is by taking a tour,” Woodhams says. “Come visit us and take a look.”

Learn more about British International School Chicago, Lincoln Park at


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