Alumni and parents of alumni gathered at Reston’s Nature House recently to say farewell to Lois Male, a founder and teacher at Hunters Woods Preschool for decades.
Male has gotten two generations of Reston-area children off to a good start at the play-based school located at the community room at the Glade Pool.
Male was among the neighborhood moms who started the cooperative preschool in 1970. She began teaching there in 1972, and has been there ever since.
Even though Reston has changed since the early 1970s, HWPS has mostly stayed the same. Male says kids learn best from discovering the world around them — there is time for more formal work later.
“It is still fun to kind of hold back on some things,” Male told Reston Now in 2014. “We can take apart an iron. We go outside and look for bugs. When the kids come in, they have choices. They learn to be attentive in a group, to be a friend and respect each other. This will help them when they get to the ‘big school.’ ”
Fellow Hunters Woods teachers presented Male with a handmade quilt with the school logo on it as a retirement gift.
Photo: Fellow HWPS teachers present Lois Male, second from left, with a handmade quilt with the school logo on it/Credit: HWPS
Lois Male, who has been teaching at the co-operative preschool in Reston for 44 years, is retiring this spring.
The school is hoping to track down as many former students and their families as possible to share their memories at a goodbye party for their “Mrs. Male.”
Male was also a founder of the preschool. As a young mother of three, she joined with three other Reston moms to organize the school in 1970. In 1972, she started teaching there. Many of her original students have also sent their children to HWPS over the years.
“She has impacted so many children, parents, families, and friends over the years, and now it’s time for us to celebrate all she’s done for all of us,” event organizers said on an Evite for the celebration, which will take place on May 21 at 1 p.m. at the Walker Nature Education Center.
“The party will be open house style, so drop by to say hello, have some cake and wish Mrs. Male well in the future.”
Party organizers say:
Please bring a note for her with a statement like “My favorite memory of HWPS was…..” (don’t forget to include your name and years with HWPS) to include in a scrapbook we will assemble for her. Also, if you have any pictures you can send to us of Mrs. Male, we would love to see them and share them with her as well! Please send them to [email protected].
Please also spread the word about the party by sharing the link to this Evite to your former classmates and families that we may not be able to reach! We’d love to have as many people from our HWPS community come by as possible to show Mrs. Male how much she means to us all. Her impact on us all has been tremendous, join us by taking some time to honor her on May 21st!
If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact Allison Rankin at [email protected] or 571-350-9499.
Read more about Male and HWPS in this previous Reston Now story.
Photo: Lois Male and young students at Hunters Woods Preschool/file photo