“Synapse Atelier’s Seedling program and Laila’s thoughtful guidance of my child has exceeded my every expectation. My daughter has opened up, grown, and truly thrived after only a few classes. The isolating environment thrust upon us by Covid and quarantine had left her wary and unsure of how to communicate amongst her own peers. Under Laila’s very patient guidance, I witnessed the importance of teaching her how to form a connection with the objects and people of her interest. Subsequently, she is now both able communicate more effectively, and perform various tasks with an intention and focus that I would not have thought possible in a 19 month old. I was also able to observe the older class and was truly impressed with their thoughtfulness and independence. They prepared and shared their own snacks, conversed intelligently with each other, and were creative, engaged, and focused at their learning stations. I find Laila’s unique ability to understand and nurture each individual child invaluable. As a parent, I am grateful my child is learning skills that will help her in all of her future endeavors.”
– Dr. Pirmohamed
May 21, 2021

“My daughter has been attending Synapse Atelier for 3 years and has been absolutely thriving there! It is a smaller school which allows for a lot of personal attention and the experience that Laila and all of the other wonderful teachers really know my child. They show tremendous respect for the children and really offer an environment for them to follow their own thought process and engage in meaningful connections. We specifically wanted to find a Reggio school because we are huge believers in the philosophy and felt so lucky to find such a wonderful school in the neighborhood! Laila puts an unbelievable amount of care and thoughtfulness into every aspect of her school and it really shows.”
– Camille
March 11, 2022

“Both my daughters have been going to Synapse and are thriving. Due to the small size of the school, each child is given an incredible amount of time and attention. They each get the chance to express themselves and their thoughts on different, interesting subjects on a daily basis. What has been very impressive to me is the respect and dignity with which the children are treated. They are all treated like individuals with valuable opinion in each subject.”
– Ghazal A.
March 7, 2022

“This is a special preschool! Laila and her Reggio teaching are just right for those seeking a play-based approach along with a loving and accepting community. Our child has been here since 18 months old in the toddler group, and, now more than two years later, we are so pleased with how he has learned and grown. They also learn letters and counting without noticing it by doing things like copying out each other’s names. Laila encourages interaction among parents and plans events like mom nights. When we had a new baby she even organized a meal train to bring us dinner and had the kids at school create a few dishes for us which she sent home with my son. This wouldn’t be possible at a bigger stressful preschool.”
– Nicole L.
March 12, 2022

“Synapse Atelier was created after many years of research, reflection, and passion. Each layer, each material, and each person within the space is an integral part of the learning experience. As a mother, as a teacher, as a student and now as a school founder and lead teacher, Laila demonstrates an ability to continue to grow and learn alongside children. Synapse Atelier is one of my go-to schools for families seeking an intimate, complex and playful environment for their young children. This school helps children develop not only their brain but their heart. Each child finds their voice, learns to take on the perspectives of others and articulate their own point of view. Synapse provides the foundation all children need… to dream, to create and to be heard.”
~ Joshua Castillo, Parenting Coach & Early Childhood Consultant

“Laila has a beautiful way with children and has created a lovely environment at Synapse Atelier. Our three year old grew enormously during his time with Laila, learning how to connect to other kids and articulate his ideas with passion and creativity. He loved the diverse experiences and warm, intimate environment Laila provides.”
– Laura & Ben S., parents.

“Laila Hussain is not only a gifted educator but she also is a magic-worker with young children. Laila’s relaxed and fun-loving energy is a magnet, my kids always ask for her and miss her! Furthermore, her ability to translate basic “play” into more complex themes that speak to early cognitive connections and help parents understand what’s going on is a true talent of hers. Laila’s imagination and creativity truly set her apart in her field. As my older daughter’s preschool teacher, she left an indelible memory on that sweet child’s heart that she will never forget.”
– Katy Tucker, parent.

“We were fortunate enough to have Laila as our son’s teacher his first year of preschool. Throughout the year, Laila’s interaction with the children was always calm and respectful, even during the trickiest of situations. It is common for kids to experience conflict during these early years, but the way Laila handled them was unique to anything I had seen before. She took the time to hear the perspective of each child and helped guide them through resolving the conflict on their own, rather than simply asking one to apologize to the other or separating the children. The kids were very involved and engaged in their learning, developing important skills such as conflict resolution, speaking up with their individual ideas and taking care of the environment they learned in. In any situation, she was very intentional about the language she used when speaking with the children as well as the materials she presented them throughout the day. Both helped guide the students to develop their creativity, problem solving skills and social/emotional intelligence throughout the year. To me, these are invaluable skills that are important for any child to develop, skills that will serve them throughout the rest of their lives. Our year with Laila was invaluable. We learned skills from her that we continue to practice in our home, and will do so throughout our son’s schooling.”
~ Sonia Malhotra, parent

“Synapse Atelier is a beautiful and thoughtful place for children. The Director, Laila Hemani, is a kind and caring teacher. The whole school is geared to make children excited about learning. They build, they discuss and they grow. She discovers every child’s way of understanding and how they learn getting them engaged and excited in the world around them. It is a very happy place for children and parents. I would recommend Synapse Atelier highly.”
~ Jim MacNerland, teacher

We first met Laila when she was a teacher at Branches Atelier, and she was our oldest son’s teacher when he was 3-4 years old. In our opinion, Laila was one of the best teachers at that school. Her ability to help the kids learn and grow was invaluable in helping our oldest son become a very thoughtful and kind person, a focused learner, and responsible for his own actions.

After our oldest son graduated from Branches Atelier, we decided to move and put our middle son in another preschool. Unfortunately, we found that the teachers at this school were unable to provide enough time and attention to the kids. We were lucky to be able to move our middle son to Laila’s new preschool, Synapse Atelier. With Laila’s guidance and support, his social skills grew leaps and bounds along with his ability to communicate his needs with words and his executive function, taking care of himself. Our middle son graduated from Synapse Atelier and has since thrived in elementary school, thanks to the foundation skills Laila taught him.

Today, our youngest son attends Synapse Atelier. It is his first year in school and he has already exploded with language, the ability to communicate his needs, his ability to play with others and take turns, and his ability to take care of his own body. Laila is the most gifted preschool educator we have ever come across. Her attention to detail in planning growth activities for the children, her ability to meet the kids where they are and help them learn and grow, and her focus on making sure each child’s needs are met are incredible.

We cannot thank Laila enough for her hard work and dedication to education. She is an invaluable asset to any preschool and we are so grateful for all she has done for our family.


– Eron H.

Our family is multicultural and our son, who is gifted, attended Synapse Atelier for two years. Here, he was empowered to be independent. Laila’s teaching philosophy inspired our son to express his ideas and learn to collaborate with other children.  It is such a warm preschool filled with love and at the same time challenges children to reach their full potential.  We are very grateful for the experiences that our son received during his time here.

– C.Y.

“Laila is a passionate and exceptionally gifted educator who has always been a strong advocate for children and families. She is deeply committed to quality education for all children. Laila is thoughtful and reflective and a creative thinker. But what comes to mind when I think of Laila, is how incredibly kind-hearted, compassionate and thoughtful she is. She is just that kind of exceptional being. We were lucky to have her on our teaching team.”
~Patricia Hunter McGrath, Branches Atelier

My daughter is truly heard at Synapse. Laila’s understanding of children and Reggio education is exceptional and I have learned so much from her. My daughter is thriving in Laila’s care. We get constant, thorough and insightful feedback in the form of videos, verbal reflections and photos. Everything Laila does is truly thoughtful and layered with intention. We can’t say enough wonderful things about Laila and Synapse. She lifts the kids up and fosters their being themselves, each in their purest form.”
~Abigail McGill, Parent

“I’ve known Laila as a teacher, parent and educator. She has a gift in nurturing our little ones as her own. She is relentless in educating parents with age appropriate child development concepts…something that I have benefited from for my 5 year old daughter. If you believe in Reggio philosophy and would like your child to be in the hands of a highly qualified individual in that field, Synapse Atelier is the place to be.”
~Salimah Hyderali Shamji, parent

“Long ago, when I first came to know Laila, she was one of those parents who always wanted to understand more about child development. At that time, I knew that she attended parent education workshops which were offered by our school, as well as elsewhere, but what I didn’t realize until more recently was that she never stopped taking classes. She never stopped thinking about how to better support the learning, and overall growth of young children. Laila trained with several of the most illustrious figures in local early childhood education circles, many of whom have recently retired. She carries with her much of their cumulative insight and wisdom, largely because she made a such a deliberate effort to learn as much as possible from each of her mentors. In more recent years, I have had the extreme good fortune to run into her a number of times at teacher workshops and seminars. I am always delighted to hear about what she’s been doing. When I learned that she was opening her own little school, I was so pleased. Synapse Atelier is a place of inspiration. It is a place of becoming- Of wonderful beginnings and explorations. It is a place where individual gifts are nurtured with the greatest of care. It is a place where children come to value themselves, their friends, and their world.”
~ Craig Parks Outdoor Studio Teacher Palisades Preschool Founding Faculty Member ECS Kindergarten/ Evergreen Community School

“I’ve known Laila, the owner, for many years. She truly cares about children and utilizes child-centric philosophies that empower the child and cultivate love and respect for the surroundings. She has helped my own parenting with my twins, and we still utilize her suggestions and coaching in our home. Highly recommend this preschool!”
~ Kari M., parent