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Susan Twombly


Susan Twombly

I have worked in the field of Early Childhood Education for over 40 years, beginning as a preschool teacher in a Headstart program in Somerville. In August of 2015, I retired from my nearly 20 year tenure as director of the Infant Toddler Children’s Center in Acton, MA, a large non-profit community early care and education program. The center has a reputation for offering an individualized and flexible program reflecting a strong belief in the competency of every child to use exploration and experiences both in the classroom and in nature, to grow and learn.

I have always been fascinated by the learning process in both children and adults. I have approached my work with a strong sense of curiosity about how children, parents and teachers develop skills and knowledge. I encourage adult students and teachers to learn by using their questions, observations, and reflections in coursework and in interactions with children.

In the past few years, I have used writing as a tool to help me understand and articulate the process of learning and change in individuals and in communities. I spent a year documenting and writing about the process of change in the early childhood center I was directing. I followed the complex and emotion filled conversations, arguments, reflections and struggles of teachers and parents as we attempted to make our practices around food meet the needs of growing children and yet be respectful of family culture in a diverse population.

I bring to my work at Lesley experience in classrooms, in managing a community non-profit, and in supporting and coaching the work of teachers and students. I am a board member of the Boston Area Reggio Inspired Network. I also serve on the planning committee for the Annual Child Care Symposium sponsored by the Boston Psychoanalytical Society.  I am married to Will Twombly, have two grown children, and live in Watertown, MA.


BA in Psychology, Elmira College
MS in Early Childhood Education, Wheelock College

Recent Publications

Twombly, S. When Teaching Interferes With Learning: Balancing Accountability With the Unique Needs of Every Child. (2014). The New Educator, 10(1) 44-52.

Twombly, S. Chapter 4 Food Fights: Difficult Negotiations between Adults in an Early Childhood Center, in Madrid, S., Fernie, D., Kantor, R.(eds). Reframing the Emotional Worlds of The Early Childhood Classroom.(2015) New York, NY: Routledge.