Business: Garden State Academy Preschool of the Arts
Owner: Tracey Campbell House, 36, of Egg Harbor Township
Location: 5 E. Jimmie Leeds Road, Galloway Township
Garden State Academy Preschool of the Arts is a school, not a daycare, for children 2 and a half to 6 years old.
We pride ourselves on the fact that all of our teachers are certified, and most of our teachers have a master's degree in early childhood education.
We instruct our children in small group settings, with one teacher for six students. The state requirement is 12 students to one teacher, who only needs to have a high school diploma.
I'd like to raise the bar, so we are overly qualified according to the state, but I think this is the least you should do.
We study how each student learns best and then apply the concepts accordingly. We sit down as a team and write lesson plans.
We have a fantastic curriculum, heavily influenced by Maria Montessori and Reggio Emilia, famous educators.
Every day the children engage in music, open-ended art, health and wellness, science, math, dramatic play, sensory stimulation and life skills.
Right now we're planning for our garden in the spring. The children will have the hands-on experience of helping through all of the process - planting, weeding, picking and cooking with the cook.
We offer part-time programs and only full-time if the individual child is ready for five days per week. Information is at
We have a summer program coming up. We're going to offer mommy-and-me yoga for children up to third grade. Eventually, we're going to offer adult yoga and adult painting courses. Ultimately, we'd like to have something for everyone at our school.
Entry: I taught public pre-K students in Atlantic City for seven years. I was an early intervention therapist for six years and an adjunct professor for six years. When it came time to send my daughters to preschool, I couldn't find the great program I wanted. So I started this, in part, for my children, who are now 2 and 4 and attend here.
Future plans: We're going to expand, putting on another wing. In the fall, we'll also offer kindergarten.
We'll have open houses from 5 to 7 p.m. April 2 and May 2.
Business editor Kevin Post