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Center of Gravity - Early Childhood Education

Jul 27, 2016 11:49AM ● By Elena Hutslar

Center of Gravity students learning while playing.


Welcome to the Neighborhood


Center of Gravity


STEM Education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is a fast-growing international trend, although not one usually associated with Early Childhood Education. This however, is about to change. The City of Pleasant Hill is now home to one of the first STEM Early Education schools in the country: Center ofGravity, located at 2702 Pleasant Hill Rd., on the corner of Devon Ave.


The Center of Gravity - recently recognized by the California State Legislature via Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla - is a full-day, year-round early education lab school focused on teaching children 2.9 - 6 years old. The school, which launched in June, was dreamed up and created by a diverse group of local early educators, families, and researchers, all working together with local school districts and policy officials to redefine early childhood education in the 21st Century.


Executive Director Michelle Grant-Groves describes the new school as “a place where we recognize children as natural-born researchers. We’re focusing on understanding and studying children’s play and using STEM-based materials and academic language to describe their complex ideas and inventions. Technology is used strategically to help children engage and extend their ideas, investigations and designs. We believe this is the new school readiness for the 21st century.”


The Pleasant Hill Chamber of Commerce is hosting a special grand opening/ribbon cutting on Friday, August 19, from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. The event and school campus will be open to the public.


“We believe that equity is our center of gravity, and we have to design for it in order for more children in our community to be able to thrive,” explained Grant-Groves, when explaining the school’s tuition and enrollment structure. The program offers a blended constellation of full-tuition, mixed income and low-income spaces in order for more families to be able to access the high quality educational opportunities offered through the school.


Full-time, year-round tuition includes:
- State Credentialed Early Educators
- STEM & Project Based Learning
- All meals & snacks, courtesy of Be.Love.Farm.
- All field trips & excursions
- Arts Integration Specialist
- Dual Language Instructional Coach
- Personal compilation of child photos & videos collected throughout the year (aligned to both the curriculum & state school readiness assessments)



Strategic partners associated with the school are: I3 Institute (Inquiry, Intention & Innovation), a national early childhood education consulting firm; Kodo Kids, a national STEM focused toy and learning material company; The Center for Play Research, located at Mills College in Oakland, and Be.Love.Farm., a local organic farm located in Vacaville.

Tours & info: (855) ECE-STEM or 855.323.7836

2702 Pleasant Hill Rd, Pleasant Hill