Nurturing Success: How to ensure a smooth transition for your child

Dear Parents,

As we embark on a new month, the International Children’s Creativity Center is excited to continue our mission of providing valuable insights into child development. Last month, our expert advice centered around the topic of surviving preschool separation. Building on this, our focus this month is on how to sustain a successful transition and establish a strong program where children feel comfortable and thrive in their learning.
  1. Consistency is Key:

    One of the fundamental principles in fostering a stable environment for children is consistency. Whether it’s the daily routine, the learning schedule, or the way teachers handle various situations, maintaining a predictable atmosphere helps children feel secure. When expectations are clear, children can better understand and adapt to their surroundings.

  2. Open Lines of Communication:

    Establishing strong communication channels between parents, teachers, and children is crucial for a successful transition. Regularly discuss your child’s experiences, joys, and challenges at school. Likewise, teachers should openly share insights into your child’s progress, creating a unified front that supports the child’s overall development.

  3. Individualized Approaches:

    Every child is unique, with distinct learning styles, preferences, and needs. Recognizing and respecting these individual differences is paramount for a stable program. Teachers and parents should collaborate to understand each child’s strengths and areas for improvement, tailoring the learning experience accordingly.

  4. Encourage Independence:

    As children transition from preschool to a more structured program, fostering independence is key. Encourage your child to take on responsibilities, make choices, and solve problems on their own. This not only builds confidence but also equips them with essential life skills that contribute to their overall development.

  5. Create a Positive Learning Environment:

    A positive and nurturing atmosphere is essential for a child’s well-being and success. Teachers play a pivotal role in cultivating this environment by promoting kindness, empathy, and respect. Parents can support this by reinforcing positive behavior at home and engaging in open conversations about the importance of these values.

  6. Establish a Supportive Community:

    Building a strong sense of community within the school environment is vital for children’s social and emotional development. Encourage friendships and collaboration among peers, fostering a supportive network that extends beyond the classroom. Parent involvement in school activities also contributes to a sense of belonging and security for the children.

The International Children’s Creativity Center remains committed to providing expert advice to support you on this journey. Here’s to fostering a nurturing environment where every child can flourish!

Warm regards,
The team of International Children’s Creativity Center


The Great Escape: Surviving Preschool Separation at ICCC

The Great Escape:
Surviving Preschool Separation at ICCC



Starting pre-school is a big moment in a young child’s life. It is the beginning of a whole new adventure, but we have to be prepared that it usually starts with tears.

At the International Children’s Creativity Center (ICCC), we take separation seriously and want to help both kids and parents go through this as quickly and easily as possible.

Let’s face it, everyone’s approach to separation is different. Some kids wave goodbye with barely a glance back, while others hold on to mom’s leg and refuse to let go.

And that’s perfectly okay. We’re here to help, and we have some tricks up our sleeves to make the morning separation a little less dramatic.

Step 1: The Shoe Moment

Every morning, the parents help kids take off their shoes and slip into those comfy slippers. It’s a moment for a bit of chit-chat and giggles, or it’s the moment to acknowledge that your child is feeling sad or scared about being left at school, and tell them you felt the same way when you were a child. Of course they will have lots of good time playing and having fun, and after nap time you will come pick them up.

Step 2: “I’m Here and Ready to Rock!”

Once the goodbyes are said, with or without tears,  your kid will be with their teacher who’s so happy to see them and set them on a mission – find their lovely face on their name badge (a special VIP magnet badge) and stick it on the board.  This simple act says, “I’m here, I’m fabulous, and I’m ready to conquer the world (or at least this cozy, colorful corner of it).”

Step 3: The Artistic Prelude

What better way to kickstart a day than with a table full of natural treasures, objects and art materials? Every morning, our teachers conjure up a different table-invitation inspired by the day’s theme. It’s like Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, but with crayons, glue sticks and other curious objects. Leaves, acorns, pine cones, and beautiful rocks, oh my! Our little artists can get to work!

Step 4: Groovy Mornings with Music

Who said mornings couldn’t be fun? At ICCC, we’re big fans of the “start your day with a dance” philosophy. At least three times a week we welcome the kids with some toe-tapping tunes that guarantee a foot-tapping, head-nodding good mood.

Step 5: The Family That Learns Together, Stays Together

 We’re all about family. That’s why we keep parents informed and involved. We send pictures and videos how kids play and learn, and sometimes we invite them to join in on the fun. We make it feel like a big family, and this is our secret at the International Children’s Creativity Center.

We know goodbyes can be tough at the beginning but with a little routine, creativity, dancing and lots of play and love, we make sure everyone leaves with a smile on their face – kids and parents alike.

International children's creatovity center teacher miss Irina Radeva

Interview with Irina Radeva

Meet the teachers!

Miss Irina is part of ICCC team since September 2021. The classroom environment and nature are her very best co-teachers. What moves her in her teacher career is walking and learning in sync with children through their precious early years.

What is your name, how do children call you?

My name is Irina. My parents named me upon their favorite mountain Pirin.

The children often call me Ms Irinka, Ms Iiinka and My Ms Iiiinka.

Tell us something about your education and experience.

I graduated Sociology at Sofia University and completed a PhD in Early Years Sociology. My experience with young children is both as a teacher and outdoor trainer. I have worked with children 2-5 years in private pre-schools in Sofia, and most recently at the Anglo-American School of Sofia as Teaching Assistant. Nature and its abundant teaching resources have been my true inspiration. I am happy to bring this passion to ICCC since September 2021 when I joined the team.

What is your favorite part of the day as a teacher?

I love surprises. My favorite part of the day is preparing surprise play invitations in the mornings. I love those moments of arrival when children realize that something is different in the room and dive in exploration. Another special moments for me are the weekly walks to the nearby forest. You can hear the happy humming of children. We always find some treasures to observe and many other to collect for our classroom.

What inspires you to keep working with children in pre-school age?

Early years are important for so many foundations for life. I believe that children are curious and

Creative. They enjoy collaboration, they are capable of so much and do care. My inspiration is

to walk and learn with them through those precious early years. And to sparkle some nature and

magic on top.

How do you motivate children?

The classroom environment is my best co-teacher. Besides my wonderful colleges, of course.

Whenever children own their learning spaces and whenever their natural curiosity is supported

to deepen, they always do their best and love to stay focused on their favorite things for

longer. Nothing else is needed but keeping that space open-ended and inviting.

How do you face difficult challenges throughout the day at school?

I see the available resources and all the best in each child. In challenging moments, I ask myself

what is the basic need that stays behind a difficult behavior and how to support that need. The

children are eager to learn as soon as they feel safe and acknowledged for who they really are. I

try to engage children in problem solving as much as possible, too.

What is the best part of being a teacher?

I will share a favorite quote of Rachel Carson to answer: “If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.” Being that adult for the children is a true blessing. And by all means, I am learning thousands of jokes daily and witnessing thousands of precious moments to celebrate with children.

What sort of morning routine do you have to get ready and in the mood for the class?

When I enter the empty classroom in the mornings, I see it full of possibilities. That is a great start! We greet each other with a hug. Children love to hug their friends. Then they would rush to find their magnet, climb a little chair and place the magnet on the classroom board. This is how everyone says “Here I am!”. Later children choose where to start their work and whom to explore with.

What is your favorite child book/author and why?

My favorite child author is Eric Carle because of his amazing illustrations and because he creates so much space for children’s imagination within his simple nature stories.

What is the most surprising and funny thing you heard about yourself from children?

I will share a sweet recent story. A girl brought her watercolor painting to me as a gift. She was excited to share that she had painted a cherry tree and she had also painted both of us dancing around it.

And one more story:

Me: What sounds would you like to listen during dream time? The waves of the ocean or the birds chirping?

The kids: Play the tractors for us!

Interview with Petya Petkova

Meet the teachers!

Miss Petya studies Early Years Education and Reception Year at UNISA (University of South Africa). She has taught children between the ages of 3 and 6 for the past 15 years, most of which in South Africa. After that she returned to Sofia to teach in the British School of Sofia and joined ICCC in September 2021. Also, Miss Petya is trained in Jolly Phonics, Thinking Based Learning and Suggestopedia.

Her favorite part of the day as a teacher is the first contact with the students at the morning.

What inspires her to work with children, is the difference a teacher makes in children’s lives. To see a child grow emotionally is an amazing feeling. When one gets appreciation from the parents, for taking such great care of their kids, this motivates the teacher to give even more.

What is your name, how do children call you?

My name is Petya, the children call me Miss Petya. Sometimes, usually after the weekend or a holiday they start calling me “mommy” for the first few days at school.

Tell us something about your education and experience.

I studied Early Years Education and Reception Year Teaching at UNISA (University of South Africa) in 2006 and 2007. I started off as a substitute and an afternoon teacher at LRPPS (Lynnwood Ridge Pre-Primary School) in Pretoria, South Africa. In 2008 I became a permanent class teacher and taught there until the end of 2019, groups between 3 and 6 years of age. Upon my return to Bulgaria, I worked as a teacher at BSS (British school of Sofia) for a year and in Sept 2021 I joined the ICCC team where I am very happy to work and be a part of.

What is your favorite part of the day as a teacher?

My favorite part of the day as a teacher is my arrival in the morning. My shift starts at 10am by which time all children have arrived. Seeing me at the door, they all start talking excitedly at once with a sparkle in their eyes and many hugs to give, hairstyles and dresses to show.

What inspires you to keep working with children in pre-school age?

My inspiration to work with children is the difference we make in children’s lives. When you see a child grow emotionally right before your eyes and you know you helped that child along the way, the feeling is amazing. Getting appreciated by the parents for taking such great care of their kids, children willing to come to school and being excited about the different activities and games we play.

How do you motivate children?

I personally try to motivate children by praise and encouragement. They get easily discouraged when faced with the unknown from fear of failing. So, by giving them the confidence to try even if it isn’t perfect first-time round, I believe they learn faster and easier.

How do you face difficult challenges throughout the day at school?

Facing with difficult challenges I often rely on the support of my colleague, Stella with whom I teach alongside. In such a short period of time we have managed to work together so well, that we often just look in the other person’s eyes and know. 

What is the best part of being a teacher?

The interaction with the children on a daily bases is the best part of being a teacher. They are funny, honest, lovable and affectionate. They give back much more than they receive. Each day is a surprise, because you never know what to expect and who would make you laugh with their actions or stories.

Do you notice any changes in children’s behavior for the past few years?

In my opinion, there is definitely change in children’s behavior over the past few years. They have become more confident and out-spoken, especially when communicating with adults. They are a lot more informed and use technology freely and with ease. In my opinion it has both positive and negative effect on them.

What is your favorite child book/author and why?

My favorite child’s authors are Julia Donaldson and Nick Butterworth. I particularly enjoy the rhyming and humor in J. D’s books. The stories and illustrations in N. B’s books are wonderful and most of his books include a huge fold-up page or a maze which allows the children to get involved and explore the book in an exciting way.

What is the most surprising and funny thing you heard about yourself from children?

One day when I took a day off school one of the children in my class started telling every parent who came to collect his/her child, that I have left and I am never coming back. According to her I have told all the children the day before that there is another class with children who have no teacher and I had to go for good. The story was actually half-true but most of the parents believed I won’t be working at ICCC anymore and started sending me messages to find out what’s happening.

portait picture of Gergana Popova teacher at International Children Creativity Center

Interview with Gergana Popova

portait picture of Gergana Popova teacher at International Children Creativity Center
Meet the teachers!

Today we put the spotlight on Gergana Popova, one of the Clever Kittens teachers at ICCC.

The International Children’s Creative Center (ICCC) in Sofia, Bulgaria, is here to help local and expat families.  Children find a safe place to adjust, learn and feel at home here. 


What is your name, how do children call you?

Gergana Popova, the children call me Miss Geri

Tell us something about your education and experience.

 My education is in Arts and Graphic Design. I have taken various courses in Education and I am currently studying Education Science at Sofia University. I have been working at ICCC for more than eight years. My previous experience with young children was in a day care center, teaching art.

What is your favorite part of the day as a teacher?

It is Story time when I get to do all the voices and be silly. I also love playing outside with the children, just kicking a ball around or play tag and things like that.

What inspires you to keep working with children in pre-school age?

The children are my main inspiration. It is a very rewarding age where responses are immediate and some results often follow quickly. It is an age where you love your students and they love you back and the world is still an amazing place full of wonders.

How do you motivate children?

 I rely on old and tested as well as spur of the moment techniques. Generally, I aim towards making things interesting and inviting, a more hands-on than frontal approach.

How do you face difficult challenges throughout the day at school?

 Most difficult situations are related to convincing a child to do something they don`t want to. It takes a lot of quick thought and flexibility, taking it case by case and knowing your children well. There is no one thing that answers all situations, yet me keeping my cool is key as well as always seeking better understanding on the subject, including books, seminars, the help of colleagues.

What is the best part of being a teacher?

 For me it is the pure connection and relationship with the children. I love discovering their personalities and helping them along their way. It is also the personal development it requires. Being a teacher always challenges you to work on yourself to be a better person, a more skillful communicator, a sensitive and vigilant supporter.

What sort of morning routine do you have to get ready and in the mood for the class?

 It is not quite a morning thing for me. I like to plan at least a day ahead, a week or sometimes a month, often together with my colleague. This gives me a clearer picture for the day that I have in my mind going in. Often on my way to work while driving I would remember some of the sweet things the kids did the day before and that helps me keep an open mind toward them and their needs.

Do you notice any changes in children’s behavior for the past few years?

Every day. Growing is a challenging business, it is sometimes more a tango than a quick-step, but change is always there.

What is your favorite child book/author and why?

 Erich Kastner is my favorite author. His insight into a child`s world is both heartwarming and eye-opening. He tells hard truths with humor and even though he wrote a century ago I find relevance and meaning in his books.

What is the most surprising and funny thing you heard about yourself from children?

– Miss Geri is my relaxing teacher. 

– Miss Geri, you are coming to my house and I am going to share this walnut with you.

– Look! I have a bucket of rainbows!

Me: Tell me about your vacation. Child: I hate Greece!

Share an interesting story about yourself.

When I was a child, I remember I was always imagining to be a teacher. I taught all my dolls really interesting lessons. Somewhere along the way I forgot about that and I became a graphic designer. Despite odds though teaching found me and I am really glad about it.

Do you have questions?
Call or visit us.

+359 879 403 677

Address: 20, Akademik Hristo Hristov Str., Dragalevtsi, Sofia 1415

Monday – Friday:
08:00 AM – 06:00 PM

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    *ATTENDANCE PLAN: 5 full days5 mornings (LLB and BBB only)



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    How did you hear about ICCC?

    ICCC Membership is annual and is paid in full for the school year in attendance (September – June). Attendance in July and August is optional. When a child joins after the start of the school year the fee is calculated proportionally. There is no discount for longer absences for holidays or other reasons.

    ICCC is open 12 months a year between the hours of 8.00a.m. to 18.00p.m.. While all care and attention will be given to safeguard the children during these hours, the Center will not be responsible for any injury caused beyond the control of staff. No responsibility will be taken outside working hours.

    ICCC admits children based on space availability and age. Priority is given to siblings, English native speakers and expat families.


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