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preschool mastermind class picture hanna agar

The world has spoken:

GROWNUPS, it’s time to get your PRESCHOOL ON!!!

Wowsers. I knew Preschool Mastermind was a good idea, but never did I think it would go absolutely viral the way it has! I’m completely inspired. I’m inspired to continue to break down and articulate my preschool philosophy into tangible ways people can benefit from it. I’m inspired by the support and curiosity from people all over the world. This is more than a stirring… and science is on board: playing and using your imagination are absolutely vital to your personal growth, health and overall wellbeing. My heart is pounding with excitement to connect with a whole new group of grownups who feel drawn and inspired to apply for this unique course


So come join us, just head down the spiral staircase…


and into a fantasy zone limited only by your imagination…


all 3 above images by Melia Robinson / Business Insider

The core of Preschool Mastermind remains true: this is an adventure for grownups to re-learn the basics, and experience the ::magic:: of life as it was originally intended. Guess what: You still CAN be anything you want when you grow up! And this class will give you the hands-on wisdom, intuition and playfulness you need to get there. Let go of perfection and color outside the lines! I’ve been so inspired by the individual journeys of our very first class of preschoolers, and I’m thrilled to do it all over again, only s’cooler.

We’re crafting a very special summertime adventure, taking what we learned from our inaugural class, and tweaking it to create an even better, more comprehensive program to invoke your playful, innocent spirits. We’ll explore preschool topics (like outer space!) blended with grownup concepts (like inner space), in order to apply and inject play, wonder, self-belief, and community into our grown-up lives.

Rainbow Dot Line

:: :: THERE WILL BE :: 

– arts and crafts (finger paint, Play-Doh, macaroni crowns, YES PLEASE)
– show and tell (share your material stories to uncover clues on your spiritual path) 
– snack time (with themes planned by you!) 
– music time (with special rockstar guests like Janna Pelle‘s Floorchestra)
– nap time (the best time ever)

– lessons and playsheets (learning is FUN!) 
– buddy system (a BFF to keep you accountable for awesomeness) 
– games (i mean, does anyone remember how much fun musical chairs is?)   
– dress up and make believe (your imagination is needed! In collaboration with neighbor Kostume Kult)
– class picture day (dress your 4-year-old best! wallet prints and class print included. it’s so surreal with Hanna Agar Photography)
– a field trip, obviously
– All students will be given homework in the form of challenges, prompts, play sheets. Expect to get out of your ordinary routine and leave a trail of ::magic::




– 2 extra ::magical:: awesome teachers!! {CUPCAKE} + {wizard} with supporting path curriculums
– 1 extra class session (it simply wasn’t enough last time) 
– a 1-hour check-in phone call over summer break with Miss Joni 
– Skipping Club adventures in tandem (it’s skipping season, after all!)
– Preschool Slumber Party and other PLAY DATES! (in calendar) 
– more *sparkly* Kinetic Sand colors (once you go glitter, you don’t go back)

SCOTT BARRY KAUFMAN, Scientific Director of the Imagination Institute at UPenn

:: ADDED SPECIAL GUEST @ Preschool Slumber Party ::
CHEF JAMES RAY raw food expert and chocolatier will be joining us for cooking class (Fun Fact, James Ray used to be a Preschool Teacher!)

preschol mastermind summer s'cool dates

summer s'cool drop in




miss joni miss cancan

preschool mastermind teachers

cupcake and wizard



All information on class dates and times, our fair-n-square sliding scale payment system, and more can be found on the application form, which MUST be printed and filled out by hand.


Some videos for your perusal:

“Yes, There’s A Preschool For Adults And It Sounds Amazing.” Welp, if Huffington Post Live thinks it sounds amazing, maybe I did a good job describing it here! Thanks to the ::magic:: of the Mastermind, I was pulled in with a couple other esteemed all-stars in the grownup play arena. If you’re thinking about doing this, watch the interview below. The full clip can be found here, in Why Adults Should Get Out and Have Playtime.

There’s also this video which shows a day in the Preschool Mastermind life.

And this one, on WGN TV Chicago!





Not that we care what anyone else thinks… but! Okay fine, deep down we really do care. {We actually devote part of the curriculum to this particular pervasive piece of subject matter.}

From feedback from preschoolers, to drop-in journalists, to advocates of play, here are some significant tidbits that I’ve selected to guide you in your choice-making process of if Preschool Mastermind is right for you. You can also google and see a bajillion other things that have been said. I’ve also chosen the quotes that make me smile.

From the Village Voice (after this story, Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman and I have become buddies!)

“Maintaining a sense of playfulness into adulthood is highly conducive to creativity,” says Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman, a scientific director of the Imagination Institute at the University of Pennsylvania. “Creativity sometimes requires deactivating the prefrontal cortex [a part of the brain that helps regulate complex cognitive, emotional, and behavioral functions] and letting ideas wander freely.”

Kaufman, who has himself waxed nostalgic about the magic of preschool, says introducing that childhood ritual to adults could actually be valuable. “Allowing adults to break free of their critical thinking and ordinary experience can jolt them into a new awareness that changes their perspective and allows for greater insights.”

Melia “Mimi” From Business Insider felt the ::magic:: 
“Three and a half hours after I arrived at Miss Joni’s playhouse, I left feeling utterly refreshed. The coloring gave me an outlet for the day’s stress, the students’ warmth filled me with positivity, and the music readied me for sleep. At Preschool Mastermind, I tapped into the superhuman capacity for joy that comes so easily to children. It remained with me through the morning, like the glitter in my hair.” 

Some good reasons to join from NPR’s Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me

“If you’ve lost your inner child lately somewhere under tax returns and conversations about race over coffee, you might want to head back to preschool.” (is this real life?)

The Psychological Case For Adult Play Time 

“Re-ignite the child inside! The stigma around play is there, but it’s our job to fight back and understand that we all really love to play. I believe we’re on the verge of a revolution in how we balance work and play. Imagine a billion people pushing for play time, not in a frivolous way or a way that negates progress, but in a way that supplements and allows us to make even more progress. It’s time to put play back into our lives.” 

Playing around in the Wall Street Journal…
Wall St Journal Phto
Student Amanda Devereux, a 33-year-old white collar criminal defense lawyer and Harvard Law Grad, complemented Ms. Lapidos on her pink lace footies: “I like your sox, little fox.” 

a day in the preschool life in COSMOPOLITAN!

Part of the ::magic:: of preschool is getting to be whatever you want to be when you grow up. Amanda Devereux (we call her Mandar…. everyone in Preschool Mastermind gets to go by a fun “preschool” name, btw) documented her first day of school! It was her first ever published piece! How did it happen? She was simply texting her friend about how excited she was to go back to preschool… and he just happened to be a Cosmo editor who thought it sounded totally awesome and invited her to write. She has since written 2 more articles. YAY MANDAR!!!

Cosmopolitan Preschool Amanda!

6 awesome things our PRESCHOOL MASTERMIND students said on their post-preschool playsheets: 

1. I’ve had a chance to understand myself better as an adult by using the tools I learned in Preschool.

2. It’s been a a place to meet friends, relax, and solve real world problems with a preschool flair.

3. I’ve found my family of lovers of childlike wonder.

4. I’ve opened up and found ways to play in my everyday life.

5. I grew by learning to defend who I am to naysayers and h8ers.

6. I can talk to the media now!!!

Yes… you might have noticed… we had a huge media swarm. From all over the world!

We take media very seriously and see our collective role as Preschool Mastermind to direct these playful powers towards the greater good – to people out in the world as inspiration. While we’ve had requests from literally hundreds of outlets, we only invite the best of the best, and the most genuine joy-spreading reporters to come join us for a session. All media – that includes photographers and such – are required to fill out applications, so we’re all on the same preschool page. Please keep in mind that by applying for this class that you might become internet famous.


It looks like this – but use the link to download.

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preschool summer s'cool prices

preschool mastermind application yay

head shoulders knees and toes



Imagine my signature in finger paint,


PS. Are you reading this from somewhere besides New York? If you are not in the NYC area and interested in bringing it to your city – either as a student or teacher – please email Be part of this movement, be part of the future of Preschool Mastermind!