JCYS Family Centers foster a love of learning while helping children develop social and emotional skills in a nurturing environment. Located in Chicago (Lincoln Square Ravenswood and Wicker Park), Buffalo Grove, and Highland Park, our play-based curriculum delivers age-appropriate lessons in math, science, and literacy while encouraging creativity and individual expression.

JCYS offers early childhood education (infant care, toddler care, and preschool), summer camps, and specialty programs year-round to serve children ages 6 weeks through 13 years.

Program Highlights

Academic Foundations

If there’s one thing children are good at, it’s asking “why.” At JCYS, every “why” is an opportunity to practice counting, learn a new letter, or find a country on the map. Children’s natural curiosity and playfulness guide our curriculum. Our teachers encourage children to ask questions and explore their interests while building reading skills, comfort with words, and a foundation in math and science.

Jewish Culture & Engagement

Families of every faith are welcome at JCYS. Children at our family centers learn about Jewish traditions and values through inclusive classroom and family celebrations like enjoying Challah bread every Friday to celebrate Shabbat (the Jewish Sabbath) or participating in classroom tzedakah (charitable giving) projects.

Physical Development

At JCYS, children run, jump, bounce, climb, dance, and crawl through indoor and outdoor play spaces. Our experienced teachers encourage active play during the school day to build children’s strength, stamina, and gross motor skills.

Social and Emotional Skills

Children at JCYS learn to share with peers, manage conflict, solve problems independently, and take on age-appropriate challenges. Through group play and classroom activities, children make friends and build social-emotional skills for success inside and outside of the classroom.

🎉 A huge THANK YOU to everyone who joined us for Samba with the Stars on April 4th. It was an evening of joy, dance, and community, and we're thrilled you were part of it! With your help, we raised significant funds for JCYS's early childhood education and leadership development programs. Here's to making a difference and continuing our 117-year legacy in Chicagoland! ... See MoreSee Less
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JCYS Iris & Steven Podolsky Family Center will be hosting two April Open Houses, one this week and another next week! Come meet our dedicated directors, take a tour, and engage in a Q&A session. Learn more at jcys.org/lincolnsquare. RSVP required. ... See MoreSee Less
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🔑 Unlock a world of possibilities for your child at JCYS! Our play-based curriculum is designed to nurture their spirit, ignite their imagination, and boost their confidence. 🚀 Registration is open for 2024-25 summer and school-year programs. Explore all we can offer your family by visiting jcys.orgJCYS Iris & Steven Podolsky Family Center JCYS Wicker Park JCYS Lutz Family Center JCYS Northwest Family Center ... See MoreSee Less
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