Smith Street Maternelle
Smith Street Maternelle


Smith Street Maternelle is a French immersion preschool program grounded in the fundamentals of progressive education and experiential learning.

We have developed a teaching philosophy based on the fundamentals of language immersion education that blends influences from Reggio Emilia, Maria Montessori, Rudolf Steiner and the Developmental-Interaction approach.

At Smith Street Maternelle, children are encouraged to play and explore. They become active learners and critical thinkers.

We offer:
- an incredible group of bilingual educators who are continually designing and re-adjusting curricula adapted to your child’s needs
- a beautiful, modern, bright, clean and playful newly constructed space with every design detail intended to foster a child’s growing independence and happiness
- expert-led talks, and fun events for you, your kids, and the whole family together

Smith Street Maternelle offers programs for children ages two to five, and gives parents the flexibility to choose from half, full, or extended days. Applications are open now for both locations—Carroll Gardens and Gowanus. Visit the Smith Street Maternelle Website to learn more, see tuition rates, and apply.

Reviews (15)

  • Review from the Spring 2024 Early Education Survey

    REVIEW: We are an English-only family whose two-year-old child began school at Smith Street this past September, and we could not be happier with the maternelle program, and with the progress that our child has made there in the past nine months. From the moment we first entered the building on our first tour we were made to feel at home. The space is beautiful, the program is thoughtful and progressive, the administration is accessible and responsive, and the teachers are just so wonderful: caring, warm, intelligent, well-educated, and well-suited for their roles. We were initially concerned about our own lack of the target language but it has not proven to be an issue. We've enjoyed becoming part of the community of engaged parents and look forward to the school continuing to grow with our child!; Amenities: Has after-school options, Has early morning hours, meals available for fee; What would you change? Lack of outdoor space and therefore outdoor time is an issue in Brooklyn Heights but the administration is making efforts to address it
  • French summer camp/French Lessons?

    I just want to echo Smith Street Maternelle is a great option. My daughter went to the Maternelle, is now at their elementary school, and loves their camp!
  • French summer camp/French Lessons?

    We're sending our 4 year old to Smith Street Maternelle's camp (again). She said it was her favorite thing she did last summer.
  • Full-Day French-Language Summer Camp

    Smith Street Maternelle is also great.
  • Full-Day French-Language Summer Camp

    Our daughter has attended the Smith Street Maternelle summer camp for a couple of years (and is a student at the school). We highly recommend it!
  • Review from the 2022 Summer Camp Survey

    Location: 388 Carroll Street How old was your child when they attended camp this summer? 3.5 Review: Camp is super fun, teachers are great! Camp runs from 8:30 - 4:00PM. Kids split their days between inside/outside on their patio.
  • 2’s program this fall

    Smith Street came to our rescue after our son's previous school closed unexpectedly just *two weeks* before the 2021 school year was about to start. He had already been in French immersion and we were thrilled to find a way for him to continue his French while getting an integrated, progressive education. We have been very pleased not just with the education this year but also with the school's communication with parents and their approach to dealing with COVID. The teachers are enthusiastic and highly engaged and the administrators are accessible, thoughtful, transparent, and kind.
  • Smith Street Arts & Lettres reviews?

    We’ve had our daughter at Smith Street since she was 2.5 and she’s currently in the kindergarten class. We love it! Completely concur with the other reviews - we even got into the DLP at PS 58 this year and decided to stay at Smith Street given the amazing teachers, curriculum and learning. The rotation of specialty teachers mentioned in a prior response really is special- and the art that comes home is beautiful! The K class has a very similar set of teachers to the grade 1 rotation. We’re an English speaking family at home (I read/speak with our daughter in French but not as our primary language of communication) and our daughter has a huge vocabulary in French and speaks and understands perfectly. It’s a very welcoming school, and I would be remiss if I didn’t also give them kudos for how they’ve done a great job with education during Covid - we’ve had very few quarantines and when we have they do a really great job of virtual learning via a wide range of media (videos, books, daily home activities, zoom…).
  • Smith Street Arts & Lettres reviews?

    We moved out of the country before our daughter entered into K at Smith Street, but she was at the pre-school and the teachers and director, Olivia, is seriously the best. We moved to Canada and she is attending a French private school here (still a good school), but the attention to detail and communication from the administration and amazing teachers they hire (they put a lot of thought into hiring to make sure they have the best teachers) at Smith Street is miles ahead of our daughters school here in Canada. Olivia cares about each and every student and makes sure that all their needs are met, small or big. The education is great as well. Our daughter entered a program that is based on the France International standards and she hit the ground running here. I know this isn’t for the K program specifically, but Olivia runs the whole program and I can’t speak highly enough about her, so thought it would be helpful to chip in my 2 cents.
  • Smith Street Arts & Lettres reviews?

    Our son went to smith street maternelle last year for moyenne section (he was 3 to 3.5) and we had a wonderful experience. He’s no longer there because he’s in a (free) pre-K now, but we miss it.
  • Review from the Fall 2021 Early Childhood Education Survey

    Type of facility: Daycare Review: It's a great daycare with loving teachers. Our child really enjoys going there What amenities does the facility provide? Has outdoor space, Provides meals, Does date night once a month Is there anything you would like to add about how the school handled the pandemic? Teachers wear masks
  • SMM

    Our daughter has attended SSM’s “toute petite” program two mornings a week and we all adore it. The staff is incredibly thorough and kind and goes so far beyond what I’d expect to make both the kids and parents feel comfortable. Our daughter went in without any French exposure and can now easily count and sing songs in French. We’ve enrolled her for five mornings a week starting this fall. Feel free to message me directly if you have any specific questions.
  • Experiences with Smith Street Maternelle?

    Our daughter did 2s at Smith Street Maternelle. It was the most wonderful experience. They are such loving and amazing teachers and the school owner is wonderful. They did wonderful with online learning very quickly when the pandemic first required school closures, and to my understanding they didn't close often last year (we moved so weren't enrolled last year). Our daughter did not have any French exposure when she enrolled but did great there and they really helped her along. In short, I have not one bad thing to say.
  • ISO French/bilingual creche/ daycare for infants

    We are at Les Bijoux de Miley (actually her next door location La Maternelle de Park Slope). We've been there for 4 months and really like it! The maîtresses are super caring and competent, they put a ton of thought into the curriculum, great food, and good communication with photos and updates every day. All in all we're very happy with it. On the other side, I do have my concerns with my baby being with masked caregivers all day, especially for language development.
  • Daycare or school that requires masks?

    I would check to see if Smith Street Maternelle has spots. Last time I checked they did. We loved our experience there, wholeheartedly trusted the faculty and Director, and would still be enrolled if we had not temporarily moved out of the City.