Our unique

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.

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Neuroscience meets developmental theory

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. 

Developing every child’s self-regulation in every activity

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.

Co-constructed with Teachers

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.

Building inclusive, regulated classrooms

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.

Peer inclusion

Children learn to facilitate the inclusion of all peers in activities.

Peer partnerships

Every child works successfully and partners with every other child.

Peer scaffolding

Spontaneous peer scaffolding occurs naturally throughout the day.

Tools approach in action

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.



Activating agency

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.


A cornerstone of Tools

Let’s work together to transform outcomes and improve teacher satisfaction. Partnering with Tools will enable you to:

  • Enact equity and close the achievement gap
  • Increase teacher and family satisfaction
  • Build community in and across classrooms
  • Effectively meet state standards
  • Improve child outcomes on district assessments

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.

I’m interested in Bite of Tools Workshops

Ready to bring the power of Tools to your school?

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.

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