Mission & Philosophy

Mission Statement

The Children’s Center at Caltech (CCC) is a non-profit organization providing high quality early education and care for children ages six months through six years for the Caltech, JPL and Pasadena communities. Caring, nurturing and qualified educators, trained and experienced in child development and early childhood education, staff this outstanding program. The Center has resources to support child, staff, and parenting development. In addition, the Center provides training in the form of practical development for students from surrounding colleges and universities who are pursuing a career in the field of early childhood education.

To accomplish all this, every effort is made to build and nurture relationships of mutual respect among the children, families, community and early childhood education professionals.


Web of TrustThe philosophy of the CCC has its basis in a humanistic view of the child as an individual learner within a community of learners. The aim of the program is to respond to the needs of every child as s/he develops awareness of the world and readiness for learning. Within a STEM based program, each group provides developmentally appropriate materials and activities for the whole child in the areas of social/emotional, cognitive, language, and physical development, while fostering a positive self-concept.

Following long-term and current research on how children learn, the Center offers planned and emergent activities where children are encouraged to explore their world, think critically, solve problems, ask questions, reflect, and work collectively with teachers and peers. Teachers nurture a sense of competence and self-worth in every child through appropriate levels of scaffolding. The emphasis is on active, hands-on learning with a balance of child-centered and adult-directed activities that addresses the needs of the whole child.