Tools is a total paradigm shift. Our program is designed to enable children to learn how to learn, while building all the skills they need to be successful in school and life.
Neuroscience research identifies early childhood as a critical time to develop self-regulation. Tools pairs Vygotskian theory with neuroscience to create actionable curriculum and teaching practices.
As children learn academic skills in Tools classrooms, they are simultaneously developing the foundational skills for school and life success. But it doesn’t stop there. Vygotskian theory recognizes the tremendous developmental potential of a certain kind of play—make-believe play. Children deeply engage in this intrinsically motivating play in Tools, propelling self-regulation development.
The developmental psychologists who founded Tools partnered with teachers, spending time in classrooms observing young children and the challenges teachers were facing. They generated neuroscience and theory-informed solutions and new approaches to teaching to enable every child to reach their full potential.
Teachers put these to the test and gave feedback that contributed to a cycle of continuous improvement. In partnership with teachers, Tools became what it is today . . . and this partnership with teachers continues.
Tools empowers teachers with unique teaching practices to build inclusive, regulated classroom cultures. Being included and accepted affects children’s motivation, cognitive functioning, and academic achievement. And it brings joy back to the classroom for both teachers and children.
Children learn to facilitate the inclusion of all peers in activities.
Every child works successfully and partners with every other child.
Spontaneous peer scaffolding occurs naturally throughout the day.
There are teachers and there are Tools teachers. There are children and there are Tools children. There’s curriculum and then there’s Tools curriculum. Because Tools of the Mind is unlike any other early childhood program. With Tools, every child reaches their own unique full potential. Watch the videos below to see Tools learners in action.
Tools in action
Learning to play
Through intentional play in preschool and dramatization in kindergarten, Tools learners build self-regulation by staying in roles, using role speech, planning what happens next and more.
Playing to learn
Watch Tools preschoolers experience the joy of playful learning. See Tools kindergarteners put their whole selves into learning to read and write.
Igniting intrinsic motivation
Watch Tools preschools’ sheer enthusiasm for learning. See Tools kindergarteners who are motivated to write and set learning goals.
Watch Tools preschoolers experience the power of planning their play. See empowered children making choices and initiating their own learning.
Empowering peer partnerships
Watch Tools preschoolers immersed in peer to peer reading and learning. See Tools kindergartners fully engaged in conversation and growing together.
Let’s work together to transform outcomes and improve teacher satisfaction. Partnering with Tools will enable you to:
For over 30 years, Tools has been dedicated to using research, data and teacher feedback to refine its approach and strengthen its positive impact on children and teachers. We’re proud to be a nonprofit that:
Not looking for a comprehensive curriculum? Get a taste of Tools with our Bite of Tools Professional Development. You’ll start building regulated, inclusive classroom communities right away. Join the many schools that are re-energizing teachers and improving child outcomes with actionable classroom strategies.
Tools is the comprehensive early childhood program that develops every child’s self-regulation in every activity. Research shows that self-regulation is the biggest predictor of success in school and life.