Early Childhood 3-5 year olds

The Early Childhood programme immerses children into an exceptional English setting with daily French activities. The programme encourages children to explore its principles of respect, responsibility, and community. The result is an atmosphere of collaboration where children learn while playing in a welcoming, positive, and safe environment.

Teacher and student - the Early Childhood

Informed by the Primary Years Programme teaching methodology

Relationships are key. Children learn through student-centred, hands-on experiences in this innovative pedagogy by IB PYP. The philosophy is based on laughter, play, music, and open-air activities which stimulate a child’s natural curiosity.

Early Childhood Classroom at International School of Lausanne

A building designed for children’s well-being

Our building is spread over three floors and will immediately make you feel at home. The top floor is reserved for group activities and has a kitchen adapted for the safety and enjoyment of even our youngest children. Our rooms are spacious and full of light. Additionally, each classroom opens up to an outdoor play area.

Early Childhood staff

A team of passionate, caring teachers

Our dedicated team has been working at ISL for several years and are all specialised in children’s well-being. They will tell you about your child’s activities daily at pickup time, and you will receive a weekly personalised report.

“We were worried that our son would not be able to follow in English. However, within a few months, he became better at English than the both of us, who have studied English for years and years. He is perfectly integrated!”

François P., Father of Max
Children playing at school
Testimonial of a mother from the Lausanne area
Are there any entry requirements for joining the Early Childhood?
– To join Reception 3 children must have turned 3 before 1 September of the year of entry.
– To join Reception 4 children must have turned 4 before 1 September of the year of entry.
– Children must be toilet trained before starting school.
– Parents to ask paediatrician to carry out hearing test at annual health check.
– We strongly recommend that children should be able to feed themselves before starting school
and ask that dummies/lolettes/pacifiers stay at home, as this is an important stage of a child’s
development to work on self-management skills and to develop their language acquisition.
– In line with promoting a healthy lifestyle to our younger learners, children should only have water in
their school drink bottles.
What are the school hours for the Early Childhood?
You can drop-off your child between 08:15 and 08:30. Reception 3 finishes at 12:00 if children are attending mornings only. The school day ends at 15:30 for Reception 4 and Reception 3 students who are attending the afternoon session.

After-school supervision is available through our Extended Care programme, which runs in sessions from 15:40 to 16:50 and from 16:50 to 18:00.
Will my child have an opportunity to learn French?
Yes. Our EC French teacher is a qualified and experienced early childhood educator. She will be working with all the EC classes through a combination of team teaching, working with small groups, or working with the whole class. The French teacher will always be modelling the French language when working with the students, and the students will be able to learn concepts that are introduced in the curriculum in both languages. Each class will have at least seven hours of French integration per week.
What is the minimum amount of days my child should be attending the Early Childhood?
Reception 3: We offer a flexible schedule for your children, possibilities range from 4 half day sessions a week, up to 5 full days.
Reception 4: All children attend 5 full days.
Do the children get to play outside?
Absolutely. Interacting with the natural world and getting some time to play and explore outside is an integral part of the programme. We ask that the students keep their wet weather and snow clothing at school in the winter. On average, the students will have three different outside play times each day.
What is the teacher to student ratio in the EC?
Each classroom has a full-time homeroom teacher and a full-time teaching assistant. We have a ratio of 1 adult to 9 children.
Do you organise transportation to and from ISL?
A bus system is available from the age of 6.
Is it possible to visit before applying?
Yes, and we encourage you to come visit our Early Childhood so that you can see the learning environment in action. Please visit our admissions page and book a tour.


The Early Childhood Programme is based on the Primary Years Programme (PYP) of the International Baccalaureate (IB). Follow the link to learn more.