Our purpose at Ivy Hedge is to create a warm and loving atmosphere for little children. Each group has six, seven, but no more than eight children with a specialized teacher for that group. She will work with one or two children individually while the other children move about the room freely choosing any area in which they have an interest. A child’s play is purposeful and aimed at learning rather than amusement.

We realize these early years are the most crucial in the life of a child. Their ability to absorb is at its peak and their curiosity insatiable. During this period the child’s whole intellectual and emotional being is being established. We have selected the best materials which enable the child to satisfy his or her intellectual curiosity and needs. At the same time we nurture them with kind and loving attention toward how they feel, what they think, and giving them much freedom to express themselves.

Music, Art , Spanish, Computers, and Yoga are also an integral part of our program. Without pressure our little ones are exposed to beginning reading, math, and language development skills. The program is presented in such a way that the children experience much success and they love it. Our goal is to assist all children to realize their own wonderful uniqueness and to respect that quality in all living things.


Nursery School is usually the first extended time spent away from home. Most important in sustaining this transition is an understanding teacher, sensitive to the new separation yet warm in her support for the new adventure.

All of our teachers are fully qualified with the necessary State certifications, training, and experience in the field of Early Childhood Education. They recognize an atmosphere of freedom is not created by abandoning preparation and planning but in doing even more preparation and creative planning than is necessary in the conventional classrooms of the elementary schools. Although the atmosphere in the room appears free, the teacher knows where the class is going. Every teacher believes deeply in the integrity of the individual child, and devotes much time and energy into finding out how to best direct each child to his fullest potential.

Our program centers around the child considering at all times his desires as well as his capabilities. Activities and materials are carefully chosen to help each child learn and identify, categorize and then integrate these experiences within himself which results in self-confidence and secure independence.

Recognition is given to the child’s need for sufficient time to develop at his own rate and pace. With approval, understanding and many opportunities to assume responsibility for himself, each child blossoms remarkably in self-esteem and maturity.


Owning a school was always something that I thought that I would like to do. When the opportunity came in 2004 my husband and I sat down and decided with my background we should give it a go. In 2003 I chose Ivy Hedge for my daughter because I thought it was the best preschool in the area.

With 6 years behind me as a high school special education teacher at Ocean Township High School, 2 years of teaching nursery school at Seashore Preschool, 8 years of coaching high school sports( field hockey, swimming, lacrosse) and children of my own, I felt that my background was suitable to run a preschool. I hold a Master’s Degree in Teaching from Monmouth University and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Villanova University where I also was on a full scholarship to play Division I field hockey. I hold certifications in nursery school, elementary education and special education.

Children at Ivy Hedge achieve and learn far beyond any predictable level of measurement meant for children their age. And they accomplish this within the most comfortable and happy atmosphere possible for them.

I think Ivy Hedge meets honestly and openly the most discriminating and challenging standards set by parents and colleagues who visit and observe us. I invite you to read our brochure for detailed information about our Beginner, Nursery , Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten Enrichment classes.

Sincerely, Melissa Kopec