About SYC . . .

School for Young Children Welcome to the website of the School for Young Children in Columbus, Ohio. Our program was founded in 1969 as a part-time preschool program.  Our philosophy has remained consistent through the years; that children be allowed to develop at their own pace in an atmosphere of free play enriched with a variety of creative materials and the support of teachers who respect them as individuals.

As a community outreach program of the First Unitarian Universalist Church, we are a welcoming school--we do not discriminate upon the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, or cultural background of parents or children.

Friends & Family Scholarship Donations

Posted on January 25, 2016 in category SYC Announce

Friends & Family Scholarship Donations

Dear Friends & Family,

We are writing you for support of School for Young Children. SYC is a very unique place; we teach and support children in their emotional and social development through play, their primary language.

SYC has a scholarship fund for families who otherwise cannot afford to send their children to preschool.  The money we receive comes from donations on this website and the auction.  If you are able to donate please click the Donate button on the right.  The full amount of your donation is tax deductible and will go entirely to the scholarship fund.

Please feel free to tell your friends and family. With your support, SYC can continue to help children who would not otherwise have the opportunity to discover the joys of learning through play.


Thank you for your support,

The SYC Family

SYC Snow/Emergency Closing Policy

Posted on January 11, 2016 in category From the Office

SYC Snow/Emergency Closing Policy

SNOW/EMERGENCY CLOSING POLICY: Because our children do not wait for buses or walk to school, it doesn’t always make sense for us to close for low temperatures. We see many families out and about on those cold days and know that for many a quick trip from house to car to school is preferable to staying cooped up all day or having to make it up later. As a result, we will not necessarily close SYC when Columbus City Schools closes. The SYC staff will make a decision on a day-to-day basis, taking into consideration road conditions and weather. We may also choose to close for the morning and open for the afternoon if it seems appropriate. We will aim to notify parents (email, Facebook, text, website) soon after Columbus makes their decision, but at least by 6:30 am for morning/all day cancellations and by about 9:30 am for afternoon cancellations. If Columbus closes, we will post whether we are closing or whether we are staying open. Keep in mind that last-minute cancellations are always a possibility due to other factors (water, heat, etc.) regardless of what happens in Columbus.

Registration has Started for the 2016-17 School Year

Posted on January 03, 2016 in category SYC Announce

Registration has Started for the 2016-17 School Year

Registration for the 2016-17 school year has started. Priority applications (church members, current families, previous families, staff, children of alumni) need to be submitted before 12 pm on February 12. Non-priority applications (new to SYC) need to be submitted before 12 pm on February 19. There is a $60 application fee per family. This fee is waived if a family had a child on one of our waiting lists, paid a registration fee for the current school year, and never got into a class. Also, we ask that all new to SYC families visit our school before they submit an application. The application can be found here 2016-17 Registration Packet. Please call our office at 614-267-0254 to make a visit appointment and/or to ask any questions.


Illicit Play

Posted on December 10, 2015 in category Director's Blog

Illicit Play

When I was in elementary school, my best friend and I often had sleepovers. The best part about  sleepovers at Krista’s house: raiding the fridge late at night (it was probably only 10:00). We’d peek out of her bedroom, checking to make sure everyone was asleep, tiptoe to the kitchen, pry open the fridge, and sneak out the salami.  We’d creep back to her room with our stolen stash, gleeful and giggling. Knowing that we’d broken the rules and done something “bad” bound us to each other and strengthened our friendship. Years later, we learned that her mom knew about our late night escapades and purposefully bought the salami for us.

This illicit play, play that breaks the rules, serves a purpose for children. They test the boundaries of what they are capable of, of what they can get away with. It’s powerful and enforces their feelings of autonomy. For me, a rule­following kind of kid, this midnight thievery allowed me a healthy taste of the thrill and power of breaking the rules while minimizing the risk. This type of illicit play can also serve to reinforce friendships—there’s nothing like keeping secrets to bind you together!

What’s the difference between illicit play and plain old breaking the rules?  I think it’s a matter of degree—is it hurting someone or something? Is it happening often or in a way that interferes with other activities? Is it reinforcing the relationship of the children participating or is one of them using the play as a means of having power over the other?  In these cases, it’s up to the adults who are aware of the behavior to set a limit and offer other ways for children to experience power and autonomy.

If we don’t feel that we need to set a limit on the illicit play, what’s our job as the adults who know that it’s going on? We can allow or encourage opportunities for illicit play by allowing children the time and space to explore the limits of their autonomy while keeping them safe, by not always saying something when you notice a boundary being pushed.

Krista’s mom chose to support us by secretly being the “victim” of our raids,  by turning a blind eye.  And I’m thankful that she did.

…Susan Roscigno, Co-Director