Who We Are
Our Creative Team
The staff at Children’s Concierge are educators — teachers, museum educators, school psychologists, licensed guides — who are passionate about helping children and their parents explore the world and learn together.
The mission of Children’s Concierge is to curate learning all over the world for families.
We are about embellishing a child's learning—a family's learning—through real world experiences.
We want to liberate learning from the brick and mortar classroom. No, we’re not suggesting putting an end to school buildings; we’re just suggesting adding other, different options to the mix.
We help families study the world deeply or we will help them get a concentrated sample of the world around them.
We envision a world where it’s expected that learning happens everywhere/anywhere and all the time.
In our vision ---
Kids are excited and curious about the world around them.
Learning is person-centered, based on the interests and needs of each learner.
People around the world will respect, learn from and help each other.
Kids will teach their parents/grandparents to be lifelong learners.
We believe in ---
the power of curiosity
the power of the world to excite children and their parents
learning and doing all over the world
the importance of family experiences to strengthen wellness
the power of knowing there is more than one way to get something done
believing you can make things happen
kindness and compassion toward self and others
taking tender loving care of our world
This pretty much sums it up! We believe that the best way to learn is to get involved with what you are learning. So, we’ve set about to make getting involved with the world, around the world, possible for families. We want families to hear and see and do; to ask questions, to turn things upside down and to make new connections; to try out old ideas in new settings and to bring new ideas back to old setting.
Phrases like—"Life is not linear. Learning is not linear. Intelligence is not singular. Education should not be fast food."—make really good sense to us!
We are so lucky to work with many wonderful travel partners across the world. They help with planning and on-the-ground work for our families exploring their countries.
We The People Constitution Tour & Field Study Consortium
Since 2003 Children’s Concierge has partnered with educators from several prominent Washington, DC organizations to provide a tour and field study program around the U.S. Constitution for all eighth grader students in DC public and public charter schools. This day-long, immersive experience focuses on taking a look at how the Constitution is alive today and how it relates to the students and their families.
The Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center
This is where Children’s Concierge began! Way back in the early 1990’s our founder, Sandra Dee Hoffman (then Carlstrom), won a coveted grant to write the curriculum for the soon-to-open Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center (SEEC). The uniqueness of SEEC and its curriculum was that the center was the first-ever child development center to be located in a museum and that it’s curriculum was to move outside the classroom and use all the objects in the Smithsonian Museums along the National Mall as teaching tools, also totally unheard-of at the time! From these roots, requests for Children’s Concierge’s services to move learning outside the classroom grew domestically, nationally and eventually internationally.
One More Thing ---
Pickle Pea Walks
Our way of exploring is to dive in and get involved; to feel rather than to just see or hear things. So when challenged to present walking tours that focused on the history of Washington, DC Children’s Concierge partnered with three DC playwrights (Kitty Felde, Stephen Spotswood, Patrick Flynn), to create original scripts/plays. And Pickle Pea Walks was born.
Guests may choose from three, interactive walks around the White House area of the city and the President’s Neighborhood that take them back in time to learn about earlier days in White House history. The story of the White House is told by a professional actor portraying one of three real-life figures who actually lived or worked in the White House.
Guests might select to stroll with -
Liz Carpenter, First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson’s energetic press secretary. She knows the ins and outs of working in the East Wing and the West Wing of the White House. And she is quite anxious to share this inside information! The year is 1969.
Quentin Roosevelt tells walk guests all about his life as the youngest son of President Theodore Roosevelt and his wife, Edith. His White House Gang ruled the roost in the White House and he has lots to tell about their time together! The year is 190?????
Mr. John Ousley, the first White House gardener (1825-1852), is working close by and stops to take guests on a short stroll as he tells them about our early presidents and the importance of gardens and landscaping in White House history.
The results are hysterical, sweet, charming and very informative (and historically accurate)!