Playful Learning is a method of early childhood education that artfully weaves together play with learning.

We bring education to life through our in-person preschool studio, online teacher and parent lounges, and hands-on learning materials—carefully curated for the youngest learners—and the families, teachers, and schools who care for them.

Playful Families
Playful Schools
Playful World

our story

Playful Learning was founded by award-winning educator and author, Mariah Douglass Bruehl in 2008, as an online resource for children, parents, and teachers.

With the goal of bridging research and practice, Playful Learning Studio opened its doors in the spring of 2015 in the village of East Hampton, New York. We provide young learners with engaging in-person preschool programs utilizing our proprietary, play-based curriculum and methods.

Our innovative early childhood curriculum and hands-on experiences are developed in-house by our team of educators and implemented daily in our highly-curated early childhood classrooms and gardens.

Once curriculum has been vetted in our studio it’s made available to teachers and schools worldwide through our online membership, professional development, and hands-on classroom materials.

Having merged both in-person and online worlds, Playful Learning shares the curriculum, research, and development taking place in our preschool studio with teachers, schools, and community organizations, interested in creating play-based programs, through our online membership and materials.

This process creates an ongoing cycle of teaching and learning where educators are consistently collaborating on, improving, and reflecting on their practice—as well as how to adapt it to meet the needs of individual students and communities.


Mariah Douglass Bruehl

Founder & CEO

Jacki Schulze

Studio Director

Mary Brady

Studio Associate Director

Megan Payne

Primary Lab Head

Deanna Iwanyckyi

Primary & Beginner Lab Assistant Teacher

Kate Walker

Primary Lab Assistant Teacher

Isabella Facendola

Toddler & Beginner Lab Head Teacher

Welcome to Our Studio Where We Learn Through Play