We believe that listening to children, and to each other, is the foundation of community and collaboration. We trust children to be interested in things worth knowing about, and we follow their lead as they look closely, wonder, create, and take action.
We view our school as a living, evolving program. Our roots are in bilingualism, a love for French language and Francophone culture, and a belief that multilingualism is a tool not just for communication, but for understanding.
Our children learn in French, and they also develop their fluency in the many languages of the natural world, visual art, music, and movement. Each year, as the children and our surroundings evolve and change, we reinvent ourselves together and enlarge the horizons of our collective perception.
By engaging in an ongoing conversation regarding different ways of thinking, being, seeing and making meaning, we strive to embody the twin practices of community and democracy every day.
We offer children and families an exceptional French immersion early childhood education, in which both individual differences and the unity of the collective are noticed, explored, and celebrated.
Our program supports children to develop the skills, knowledge, and habits of mind that are the baseline for a life-long love of learning. We hope that by nurturing and encouraging all aspects of each child’s development, we’ll prepare them to be courageous changemakers who are adaptable to an ever-changing society.
Our Connection To Nature
We strive to draw the children into the natural world and deepen their connection to it. Children are immersed in nature throughout all seasons, so they can see, feel, and hear the cycles and the rhythms of the Earth.
Students develop a strong reverence for animals, plants, weather patterns, and trees. They develop the ability to look carefully at small details that many people overlook. This connection to nature helps to deepen their consciousness about what and who surrounds them. It slows them down and helps them learn to focus on the subtleties of their surroundings.
They learn to wait patiently and watch as things naturally unfold. It gives them great wisdom and confidence in their ability to engage with, and learn from, the world. As a result, they have learned to take on challenges and use their voices and knowledge to make change.
All of our teachers at LLS are native speakers and specialized in their field. Students learn from caring and supportive early childhood educators who possess strong backgrounds in the arts. We collaborate with professional and brilliant early childhood educators, composers, musicians, and artists dedicated to create unique programs designed to stimulate inquiry-based learning, concept formation and creativity.
Pascale Setbon, founder of LLS, believes that children learn by making sense of their world and their experiences. She has seen that children learn best through first hand experiences with people and materials. With a deep belief in the remarkable capabilities of each child, the dedicated teachers encourage the children to hear, understand and speak a second or a third language with joy and pride.
Pascale Setbon – Founder
Paris-transplant Pascale Setbon is a veteran early-childhood educator focused on immersive and progressive multilingual and multicultural education. In 2006, she founded Language and Laughter Studio (LLS), a French immersion preschool program and language center in Brooklyn whose mission is to nurture critical thinking, kindness and humanity, as well as develop practical tools for tomorrow’s world citizens. Prior to creating LLS, Pascale founded a French language program for public school students in the East Village, she developed new teaching strategies at the French Institute Alliance Française, and in 2004 started a French track program at the International School of Brooklyn, a premier K-8 institution for multilingual education. With a highly creative, self-determined, and forward-thinking philosophy, Pascale has guided a generation of children, families, and educators to the next stages of their educational careers.
As a mother of two American-raised children, Pascale wanted to offer her children critical perspectives on the world and dedicated significant time to unraveling the underlying truths behind the promises of American freedom and equality. Since 2018, she has served as a founding member of Whiteness and Racial Equity (WaRE), started by Brooklyn Friends School families, which works to deepen understanding of White racial identity, privilege, and bias, as well as their historical and contemporary effects, as a prerequisite to taking wise anti-racist action in solidarity with, and accountability to, people of color. She has a Masters degree in business administration and management from Paris Sorbonne. Pascale Setbon has been conferred upon the insignia of the Orders of the Palmes Académiques on May 17, 2022 by the French Government.
Clara Campoli – Ed Director
Clara has over nine years experience teaching children ages two through five in both private and public schools throughout New York City. She holds a BA in English Literature from Colorado College and a Masters of Education from Bank Street College.
She has worked in schools with a range of educational philosophies and is most inspired by a constructivist approach to learning. She wants children to be hands on, making messes, learning by doing, and empowered by a supportive community of teachers and peers. She believes that children’s first school should feel like a secondary home, where they can bring their whole-selves and build a strong sense of themselves as confident and unique learners. She is committed to helping young children develop emotional literacy and empathy, and to understand the power of their actions and words.
In her 20s, she spent significant time living in Italy where she studied Italian language and literature. She loved the process of learning language through immersion and is thrilled to help give that experience to children at LLS. She lives in South Slope with her husband and their two young children. She loves to watch her children play, practice yoga, and spend time with her family in Vermont.