Romper Room Deluxe

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By Jamie Waugh
As of Spring 2009, Manhattan will have a preschool that focuses specifically on art and environment. Luxury multi-family development Clinton Greens on West 51st Street has hired Montreal- and New York-based Karl Fischer Architects to build the Green Beginnings Academy & Arts Center.

The curriculum derives from the Italian Reggio Emilia philosophy of teaching, established in villages in this region of Italy after World War II as an anti-Fascist program to allow children some control over the direction of their learning. It's all about intellectual development inherent in the investigation of physical space and art, emphasizing experiential learning and interaction in the child's environment.

The 8,000-square-foot school will accommodate up to 100 students from six months to five years of age.

The structure of the building promises to be as interesting as the structure—or lack thereof—of the school's curriculum.

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