Etz Hayim Preschool is open part-time and is currently full for the 2020-2021 School Year. Registration is now open for the 2021-2022 School Year.

Preschool Philosophy

Etz Hayim is a private Jewish Preschool for children ranging in age from 18 months through pre-kindergarten. Established in 2001, Etz Hayim’s goal is to address each individual child’s personal developmental needs. Offering an atmosphere of learning that is nurturing and enjoyable, Etz Hayim is dedicated to helping your child grow and flourish.


Etz Hayim Preschool offers a play-based curriculum through a Jewish lens. Play offers the greatest opportunity for learning at this age. Lessons are child-centered and allow children to choose activities of interest to them while providing opportunities for cognitive, social, emotional and physical growth. As they become ready, children develop at their own individual pace and are encouraged to try a variety of activities. The preschool day is designed to give your child free-play time as well as structured, learning experiences. 

Some examples of themes that are introduced throughout the year are Jewish holidays, self-identity, family concepts, the natural world, health and safety, math concepts, American celebrations, etc. The curriculum has been designed to provide a Jewish atmosphere throughout the program. The children are given a sense of Jewish identity through the weekly observance of Shabbat, the celebration of Jewish holidays and the introduction of Hebrew through songs, stories, and conversation. Through regular exposure, children gain a familiarity with the synagogue environment.

Our Day

Our half- and full- day programs are offered on a school yer schedule from September to June.

  • Half-Day Program 9:30am to 12:30pm
  • Full-Day Program up to 8am to 5pm Monday through Friday.*
  • Optional Early Care 8am to 9:30am available to all students.*
  • Optional Lunch 12:30 to 1:15pm is available most days for half-day students and is included in part of the regular day for full-day students.

* Extended hours may be limited due to COVID-19 Restrictions.

Class Offerings

Class placement is based on your child’s age as of September 30, 2021.

  • Pre-Kindergarten (half- and full-day) for 4-year-olds
  • Mixed Age 2 1/2-year-olds to 4-year-olds (full-day)
  • 3-Day 3-year-olds (half-day) Tuesday/Thursday/Friday
  • 3-Day 2-year-olds (half-day) Monday/Wednesday/Friday
  • 2-Day Tots (half-day) Tuesday/Thursday for 18 months to 2-year-olds.

COVID Protocols

The following safety measures have been added to our preschool operations for the 2020-2021 School Year. These protocols will continue under CDC and State guidance. All teachers, children and staff:

  • Wear masks inside and outside;
  • Wash hands upon arrival, before and after eating, after using the restroom and throughout the day as needed;
  • Complete a daily health screening prior to arrival;
  • Stay home when sick.
  • All children and teachers are assigned to a pod.
  • Pods do not share the same space at the same time.
  • Toys and materials are cleaned and disinfected in between use by different pods.
  • School operates primarily outdoors for the 2020-2021 school year.
  • The Preschool follows all CDC travel guidance, and requests a 10-day quarantine or negative PCR test prior to returning to school.

Additional Information

Etz Hayim Preschool is a member of the Department of Jewish Life and Learning through the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington. Our teachers are affiliated with the National Association of the Education of Young Children. Etz Hayim Preschool is monitored by the Commonwealth of Virginia and is exempt from regulation at the local level under the auspices of a religious institution pursuant to Section 63.2-1716 of the Code of Virginia.  The preschool operates under the auspices of is a program of Congregation Etz Hayim and is insured by the congregation.

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2920 Arlington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22204