Being a kindergarten teacher in the area, I was very particular in finding a preschool that provided a developmentally appropriate program that followed a true play-to-learn approach. First Friends is providing my daughter with exactly what she needs during her preschool years; a nurturing environment that fosters a sense of self-worth and experiences that will prepare her for her kindergarten year. Mrs. Mann has an uncanny understanding of what children need, how they think and feel, and what conditions will inspire in them a sense of security, confidence, and creativity. Mrs. Mann exuberates with warmth, kindness and a playfulness the children cannot get enough of. I recommend First Friends Preschool to families who believe in the importance of social development and lots of fun and love along the way.
"First Friends has helped me become
a better parent..." KW
I believe, Mrs. Mann and my experience at First Friends, has helped me become a better parent. She accentuates positive behaviors while giving less attention to the negative. This approach makes children want to please their parents/teachers. It has been a positive experience for my family. I really enjoy the sense of "community" you get from going to First Friends., Now that some of my children are in the middle school and even high school, it has been fun reacquainting with other former FF students. My son is a freshman at Rochester High School and he played against Stoney Creek High School in basketball recently. The boy he had to guard was in his preschool class at FF and he wrestled against another "First Friend" from Lake Orion High School.
"I was impressed when I met with Mrs. Mann about my son's severe allergy" DB
After attending FF for eight consecutive years this will be our last, we will miss it dearly. The good news is First Friends are Best Friends and we know we will be back, weather it is to drop in and say "Hi" or if one of the kids want to spend their day off of school working in the classroom. First Friends is not just any preschool, it becomes like a part of your family. Mrs. Mann is enthusiastic, happy, and truly loves what she does. You know they say, "You never work a day in your life if you love your job!" I believe Mrs. Mann feels like she never works a day in her life. Her energy comes from the kids. In the three year program she greets each child at the door on her knees, eye to eye, and has kind words for each of them (and the little siblings who can't wait to go to FF). I don't know how, but she notices every haircut and new shirt that walks through the door and the kids are just beaming when she comments about them. The four year olds have the responsibility to wait for their classmates quietly on the rug, but you can tell they are each seeking out Mrs. Mann to share, take turns, use manners, and how to be a good friend. All of this is combined with a play based approach that incorporates the academics.
Throughout the last eight years I have been truly impressed with Mrs. Mann and how she has kept her program in line with the aggressive academic curriculum within the elementary schools. Each year she updates her program so her Pre-K 4 students will be ready for kindergarten. I was also impressed eight years ago when I met with her privately about my son's severe allergy and my concerns about it in an academic environment, including his risk of playing with play-doh. While some Rochester preschools turned me away and told me it was "too big of a responsibility to take on", their nice way of saying he wasn't welcome there. Mrs. Mann said she would change the play-doh recipe so he could use it and we could work out accommodations during snack time. Not only did she change the play-doh recipe, but she offered to make it for the entire two years he was there to ensure he was safe. Today this may not seem like a big deal because more and more kids are being accommodated for allergies, but eight years ago schools would "kindly” turn you away."First Friends" and "Mrs. Mann" are words that will be intertwined throughout a lifetime of conversations with our kids. I know that because First Friends and Mrs. Mann has had that big of a positive impact on my children. Our neighbor girls, 17 and 22, still talk about Mrs. Mann, and every once in awhile, if they are around at the right time, they will come over and ask to pick up with me so they can say "Hi" to Mrs. Mann. And she always remembers them...
"She brings the best out in every child." LC
First Friends is an academic based program in a class by itself. This warm, clean, loving environment is unparalleled by other pre-school programs in this area. Mrs. Mann brings so much love and enthusiasm into the classroom. She is a TRUE teacher in every sense of the word. She not only prepares the children for kindergarten, she boosts their self esteem and confidence in a structured, positive way. She brings out the best in every child.
"I believe in the staff at
First Friends." SP
When I first moved into the area, I asked several people through the community and church where they would recommend I place my daughter for preschool. The answer was a resounding FIRST FRIENDS with Mrs. Mann. My daughter is now a first grader and continues to thrive in the classroom, thanks due largely in part to the foundation built by the staff at First Friends. Emphasis is always placed on the child's individual needs because, as we all know, each child learns at his or her own pace. Education is highly important but so is their social development. I cannot say strongly enough, how much I believe in the staff at First Friends. My daughter always wants to go back and visit, and friends that she has made during her time there, are still some of her dearest friends today!
"They nurtured our children emotional, physically
and socially." JM
Preparing a young child for a lifetime of learning is so important at this critical age. We wanted the best experiences at this early stage to get them heading toward a rewarding educational experience. Mrs. Mann and First Friends have a special way of nurturing a child -- helping to prepare them for kindergarten and for life. First Friends has helped our children not only with their ABC's and 1 2 3's but developing the whole child on many levels throughout the two years that we had our children in the program. They nurtured our children emotional, physically and socially -- helping them through the good days and life's little bumps. They have a great way of being "firm yet gentle". They enhance our parenting skills and are always willing to lend a helping hand with issues that surface. You can see firsthand how the whole programs works on the days you volunteer and share the experiences with your children. We are amazed how they fit so many wonderful topics into the lesson plans. First Friends is really a great place for a child to develop a love for the learning process while still being a kid. We definitely feel they have developed in ways that we could not have imagined doing on our own.
A preschool that recognizes the importance of parent participation