Learning Environment & Partnerships

A Nurturing Community for Young Learners

At the Widener Child Development Center (WCDC), your child will have the unique opportunity of being a part of the Widener University community. This happens in a few ways…

  • The WCDC supports learning experiences for Widener University students with majors in Education, Social Work, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language, Nursing, and Clinical Psychology & Humanities. These university students provide support to our young learners through practical application of their studies.
  • Our WCDC learners have access to over 110 acres of well maintained grounds to explore and enjoy.
  • The WCDC aligns learning strategies with Widener’s values, including nurturing a child’s intellectual, emotional, social, and physical development, as well as their individual creative skills. With our staff of certified teachers, teacher assistants, future teacher candidates, and faculty members, we encourage learning through exploration and celebration of the arts.

Our Curriculum

At the child development center, our classrooms facilitate a whole child approach to learning with The Creative Curriculum. Through encouraging investigation, exploration, and play, the Creative Curriculum supports the growth and learning of the whole child, meeting our students needs academically, socially, and emotionally. Basic academic skills are integrated into open ended play, whole group learning, one on one, and small group experiences. Our classroom environments celebrate student’s individual success, growth, and progress. With the Creative Curriculum, our students are immersed in a study focusing on a specific topic for four to six weeks. Reinforcement and teaching of skills pertinent to literacy and language development, mathematics, and physical development are integrated into rich and meaningful learning experiences focused on the current study.

Our teachers implement the Second Step Curriculum for social and emotional learning. The Second Step Curriculum uses a holistic approach to encourage a strong classroom community through teaching and reinforcing skills such as turn taking, conflict resolution, and how to appropriately express emotions.

Our Classrooms

Shining Stars 

Our Shining Stars classroom is for children from 36 months to 48 months old. This classroom lays the academic, social, and emotional foundation for success as students transition throughout the center. Focusing on appropriate play and interactions, our Shining Stars classroom integrates literacy, mathematics, and social and emotional learning into daily activities. The students transition throughout the day learning the routine and rules of the school.

Pre-K Counts

Our Pre-K Counts program is a government funded program for children ages three to five. Families qualify based on their income and family size. Our Pre-K Counts program is free for qualifying families between the hours of 7am and 1pm. Aftercare is provided after 1pm. Our pre-k counts teachers focus on kindergarten readiness skills as they encourage learning through a combination of exploration, play, and structured activities. Our youngest learners in our Pre-K Counts classroom learn through example as our older students model appropriate play, behavior, and interactions.


Our Kinderbears classroom is for students from 48 months to five years old. Our Kinderbears classroom continues to foster a love for learning for our students through academic activities preparing them for kindergarten. Activities focused on kindergarten readiness skills are planned and facilitated based on individual needs. Independence is encouraged among students as self regulation skills are practiced and reinforced further preparing students for kindergarten socially, emotionally, and academically.

Parent-Teacher Partnership

Communication between parents, family members and teachers is essential to maintain a comfortable and nurturing environment for the children. If you have any questions about our program, an event or situation, please contact us. Our wonderful teachers area  great source for information related to your child’s activities throughout the day. The staff members are available each day during drop-off and pick-up, through email and/or by phone.

Delaware County & Chester Partnerships

Our location in Chester, Delaware County allows us to partner with local clinics, libraries, and other childcare providers. We work with the Chester Community Clinic, a physical and occupational therapy clinic, to provide support for our students. The Chester Childcare Alliance allows us to connect with other childcare and daycare centers in the area to share resources and advice. Our partnership with the Delco Public Libraries allows us to get free resources and encourages families to visit their local libraries.