Demystifying the Preschool Years
a book by Nancy Schulman and Ellen Birnbaum, published by Alfred A. Knopf

Nancy Schulman is the Head of the Early Learning Center at Avenues: The World School ( She was the director of the 92nd Street Y Nursery School from 1990- 2011. Nancy  received a B.S. in Elementary Education from Syracuse University and an M.A. in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from New York University. Nancy was the admissions director and a teacher at Horace Mann Lower School from 1973 to 1990. Nancy served on the ISAAGNY (Independent Schools Admissions Association of Greater New York) board from 1984-2011 and was co-editor of the New York Independent Schools Directory. She currently serves on board of the Parents League of New York and the Syracuse University School of Education Board of Visitors.

Ellen Birnbaum is the Director of the 92nd Street Y Nursery School ( and was the associate director since 1996 having taught there since 1981.  From 1993 to 2003, she also directed the 92nd Street Y’s Camp K’Ton Ton, a summer program for children aged three to five. She has a B.A. and M.A. from New York University and has studied at Bank Street College of Education. Ellen is a member of the 92nd Street Y Wonderplay Leadership Team, the Y’s early childhood initiative.  

website: Judith Motzkin
Author photos: Elena Seibert