About Us

Philosophy | Approach | Goals | Licensing | Memberships

Originally known as Carleton University Preschool, we first opened in 1967, within the Department of Psychology at Carleton University. At that time, we were designed as a research laboratory for scholars in child psychology. Our mandate was to facilitate and encourage research in child development and to provide the community-at-large with a model preschool.

In September of 1982, we moved to Lady Evelyn Alternative School and began operating autonomously as Carleton Preschool. This relocation introduced a "seamless day" for Lady Evelyn's kindergarten and school-aged children. Children from other schools in the community also attended the program, as they do today.

In 1999, Carleton Preschool underwent a program name change and now operates under the name of Rainbow Kidschool. Carleton Preschool holds the licence for Rainbow Kidschool.


Our philosophy incorporates theoretical principles of such renowned child psychologists as Piaget and Erikson. The program, reflecting its philosophical base, is developmental in nature and allows children to grow and progress at their own rate. Rainbow Kidschool provides an environment conducive to meeting the needs of the whole child: emotionally, socially, physically and cognitively. Each child is nurtured in such a way as to feel good about himself/herself. In order to stimulate a love of learning, we begin by fostering children’s self esteem and self-respect. Children are encouraged to respect others and the environment, and discover that learning is a rewarding experience. Each child learns through active investigation of a carefully planned environment. In addition to providing a natural medium for explorations, play helps children to make sense of the world around them.

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Our developmental approach stimulates a love of learning in a way that allows children to progress at their own rate. We address the full range of child development needs; emotional, social, physical and cognitive which are the foundation to the building of self-confidence and personal esteem, nurturing each child to feel good about himself/herself. We encourage mutual respect by teaching children to respect and defend their rights, while respecting the feelings and rights of others.

Our approach fosters awareness and sensitivity to the environment and its intrinsic worth, interdependence and fragility. We support a child’s sense of wonder by encouraging curiosity, exploration and the discovery that learning is a rewarding personal experience. We promote learning through active investigation of a carefully planned environment, recognizing that play is a natural process for children as they explore and make sense of the world around them.

The environment provides the opportunity for independent pursuits when children can devote meaningful time to self-initiated activities that match their interests and needs at their own pace.

Our approach engages children in small group events (music, story telling, games, show and tell) that encourage accepting suggestions and directions from others, listening attentively, interacting positively with peers, respecting adults other than parents and recognizing their valued membership and contribution in broader social groups.

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We want our children to develop skills and values that will prepare them to participate enthusiastically, safely and productively in structured learning environments and diverse social settings, building towards:
• Self-confidence
• Curiosity
• A love of learning and awareness of its rewards
• Trust and mutual respect
• Effective communication and active listening
• Creative problem solving in diverse situations
• Responsible decision-making and appreciation of the consequences

We want to reinforce and complement the guidance and care offered at home and in other settings, through professional and devoted attention to your children while in our care, offering a safe, secure and stimulating physical and social environment, being respectful, supportive of our families’ needs. We want to be open to sharing insights and experiences on approaches to learning.

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The Ministry of Education (MOE) licenses Rainbow Kidschool under the Child Care and Early Years Act. The Centre is required to meet all the regulations of this Act, including health and fire regulations dictated by the City of Ottawa, the Ontario Fire Marshal, and the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board.
The City of Ottawa and the Ministry of Education provides funding for:
Subsidies, Go Funding, Provincial Wage Enhancement, Pay Equity, Stabilization Initiative, Transformation, Capacity Building, Play-Based Materials, Municipal Health and Safety, Repairs and Maintenance.

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Rainbow Kidschool is a proud member of Child.Family.Connect Inc. which is a resource-sharing network of five independently-operated, non-profit, school-based child care centres.

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