Rodef Shalom Family Center Preschool




Children’s learning does not occur in narrowly defined subject areas, but rather, is a process where activities stimulate all areas of development simultaneously. This is accomplished by designing an environment that invites active exploration, experimentation and interaction with teachers, other children and materials.

With play as the core of our curriculum, we provide a program that encourages success through involvement in self-selected activities. Children develop a positive self-image when they are given opportunities to exercise the power of their own choices. Teachers observe closely and ask questions, make suggestions and/or add more complex materials to stimulate children’s thinking, extend their learning, and build their capabilities.

As a Temple school, we integrate our developmentally appropriate approach with the appreciation of the child’s unfolding Jewish identity. The preschool takes advantage of its Synagogue setting through extensive interaction with the Rabbis and full use of our site, including the Biblical Garden, libraries, sanctuary and the chapel. We acknowledge and respect the diversity of our children, while emphasizing Jewish values of family, community, caring and joy.  Through music, holiday celebrations and learning simple blessings, our children gain pride in the richness of their Jewish heritage and culture.

Our teachers, led by one of the city’s most respected child development specialists, Family Center Director Mimsie Leyton, work closely with families to appreciate and support each child’s unique approach to learning. Staff provides a nurturing environment that encourages peer interaction and helps children to feel safe and comfortable away from home.

The preschool provides:

  • Classes for children 18 months through 5 years old
  • Qualified, experienced teachers with college-level preparation in Early Childhood Education or Child Development.
  • Small groups and teacher/child ratios enable individualized and age-appropriate programming.
  • Active parent involvement
  • Weekly programs with music specialist, librarian, and movement specialist.

Everyone is welcome at Rodef Shalom Preschool. Located in the Shadyside-Oakland neighborhood, the school draws families from the city’s university, cultural, and medical communities. International families, interfaith families and children from other congregations or unaffiliated families throughout Pittsburgh are all welcome to enroll.