Alexandra and Isaac Kruege are parents of a 2-year-old daughter enrolled in the toddler room at the Goddard School in Edina. “Our daughter comes home happy and tells us all sorts of different stories each day that she is there. The teachers care and are always smiling and happy to see the children. We cannot say enough about how happy we are to have our daughter at this school,” the Krueges say.
The Goddard School opened in Edina in September 2020. Hetal Agrawal is the on-site owner and works alongside an education director. The school is a franchisor of Goddard Systems, meaning Agrawal is part of a network of Goddard Schools across the country and receives guidance from other franchise owners, their corporate partners and an Educational Advisory Board.
The Edina Goddard School provides programming for children from 6 weeks to 12 years old with both school-year and summer programs.
For children already in school, Goddard offers a space for them to participate in online learning while still being in a classroom. Teachers at the Goddard School help students stay on track with their virtual classes, help with homework and even provide additional activities. “In their down time, they’re doing group activities, they’re playing Uno, building things,” Agrawal says. “[Our teacher] did a science experiment this week with candy canes!”
Though the opening of the Edina location coincided with the pandemic, the Krueges say they were particularly impressed with the COVID response from the school. Masking, sanitizing, temperature monitoring and social distancing protocols eased any worries they had. “Every day there is at least one photo of our daughter with her new best friend that she has made,” the couple says. “It [was] exciting to see her making these connections during the pandemic when so many socialization opportunities [were] closed.”
Agrawal says the Goddard School uses a Fun Learning Experience curriculum (F.L.Ex.). This program centers around using fun to encourage learning and development in young children.
Agrawal describes the classroom approach as, “teacher guided and child led.” Each day, activities focus on helping children develop their different skills in fun ways. “We try to cover all of the learning domains: social and emotional development, physical, sensory and cognitive development,” Agrawal says.
The Krueges say, “Every day the toddler class at Goddard starts the day with the calendar and discusses what day of the month, day of the week and the weather. A different child gets to put the number on the calendar and our daughter is always excited when it is her turn. They also discuss the weather for the day. On days when she is home, she is always making comments about the sky, the temperature and the wind. It is great to see her little mind expanding from the F.L.Ex. program.”