About Crown Preschool

Crown Preschool began in 1948 and has operated from St. Philip’s Church in the Dunbar area since 1965. Crown follows a philosophy that views play as a child’s natural response to life. Through play, children have opportunities to explore, experiment and to learn about themselves and the world around them. The varied nature of play activities assists children’s development in all areas. Play is the work of the child and is one of the most effective kinds of learning known.

At Crown, parents, children and teachers all contribute to and participate in a creative learning environment for growth. We aim to provide quality play, offering a variety of activities and experiences to meet the physical, intellectual, social and emotional needs of the child and to foster a positive attitude towards school.

Meet our Teachers

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Nina Monahan

Nina is a Dunbar native, having grown up in the neighbourhood and even attended Crown preschool, many years ago! After school in Vancouver she went on to study Psychology at the University of Victoria then headed overseas. She lived in Australia then England, where she enrolled on a postgraduate course in Early Childhood Education and found her calling.

Nina believes passionately in children's innate capacity and desire to learn about the world around them, and believes that educators' role is to discover each child's unique way of learning and provide the tools and stimulation to keep their love of learning alive. She is inspired by a variety of approaches, from the Reggio Emilia concept of the "hundred languages of children" to the use of structured synthetic phonics in the British Early Years Curriculum. Her aim is to provide programming which respects young children's natural, holistic way of learning while gently introducing more structured activities such as group circle time and teacher-led activities like cooking. She hopes to support children to develop the social and emotional skills and positive disposition towards learning that mean they can leave Crown preschool ready to thrive in their educational journeys.

teacher photo

Hannah Zallen

Hannah was born and raised in North Vancouver. As a child, she fell in love with ballet and spent most of her days at the dance studio before training professionally after high school. Hannah eventually decided to go to university where she obtained a Human Kinetics: Exercise Science Diploma. Being invited to teach preschool ballet at her original dance studio during this time was Hannah’s first experience teaching young children. From there she fell in love with working with children and became a certified ballet instructor with the Royal Academy of Dance. She has been teaching children ages 2-18 for the past seven years at dance studios, community centres, and elementary schools.

Hannah’s love for the preschool age group led her to pursue becoming an Early Childhood Educator. She completed her Early Childhood Education Diploma from Langara College with honors. Hannah believes each child is creative, capable, and has much to offer. Young children inspire and energize her and she aims to provide as many learning opportunities for them as they do to her. Her goal is to provide a safe, nurturing environment with opportunities for children to explore and express themselves through a variety of materials and experiences. She loves the Reggio Emilia approach of an aesthetically pleasing environment and hopes her desire to create an engaging and appealing setting shines through at Crown. She looks forward to becoming a part of the Crown Preschool community and building relationships with each and every family.

Our Philosophy

At Parent Involvement Preschools, our children are encouraged and supported:

  • To pursue a love of learning;
  • To explore divergent thinking;
  • To ask questions and learn problem solving strategies;
  • To develop age appropriate literacy and numeracy skills;
  • To have opportunities for success, self confidence and independence;
  • To feel good about themselves and their community;
  • To explore creative self expression through language, art and movement;
  • To learn positive social and communication skills;
  • To be respectful, inclusive and inquisitive;
  • To master fine motor skills necessary for kindergarten;
  • To develop gross motor skills through active play; and
  • To nurture their whole selves. 

(CPPPBC Handbook)