Looking for Recent Feedback on Duck's Nest Preschool 41st St Campus

I'm looking for feedback from parents who currently (or recently) have kids attending Duck's Nest Preschool (41st St Campus). Particularly interested in hearing about the Duckling class (2yo).Thanks!

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We are in our final year at the 41st Street campus and have had a really wonderful preschool experience there. The teaching staff is excellent, the community is caring, and we've found the administration accessible and responsive. The play-based emergent curriculum has been a good fit in different ways for my two very different kids. Not sure if you are looking to enroll a child this year or next--we have experience with the current Duckling teaching team and they are phenomenal. The school usually moves some teachers up with the kids for continuity, though, so it may be a different team in that room next year. There are things I'd change--I would love for the student body to be more diverse and reflective of Oakland, for instance (something the school has been working on). I sometimes wish they were open just a little later. But overall, we'd choose Duck's Nest again if we had it to do all over, and we will really, really miss the school next year.

We absolutely *love* Duck's Nest on 41st!  We were in the Duckling class last year, so can't comment on the current class/teachers, except I think one of our Duckling teachers stayed with that group and that teacher is fantastic.  Truly, all of the DN teachers are amazing.  They treat the children with respect and are kind and firm in the way I aspire to be!  We love the play-based approach, all of the Reggio-style documentation they do, and their commitment to fostering independence as well as community among the kids.  I also love how each teacher brings something different and it seems like they are really encouraged to follow bring their passions/interests into their work.  Oddly, we have had the chance to be at all three DN locations and we loved the teachers at every location.  I will say that the administrative staff at each location have been sometimes hard to get a hold of, but once I'm in touch with them, it's been easy to work with them.  I'm happy to answer more specific questions, too.

My child attended Duck's Nest on 41st and didn't have a particularly positive experience. I was attracted by the child directed play based curriculum and low student teacher ratio, as well as location. While there are positives - classrooms are beautiful and outdoor space is nice, there were some aspects I didn't love. The teachers, especially in older classes, tended to teach what they wanted for extended periods of time. I saw children grow bored and start to act out. The class sizes are quite large, which could get chaotic. With multiple teachers in each class, it wasn't always clear who was the lead or who was looking out for which kids. Looking back, and with different experience under my belt, I wish my child's preschool years were in a more supportive and engaging environment.

Did you ask the school is they have a list of parents that you may contact as a reference? 

We are nearing the end of a six year run at Duck's Nest, with one year between our two experiences.  So many pluses, like the great outdoor space and art studio.  Both kids were ducklings and loved their teachers, who we found very nurturing.  We've been very happy, my children were engaged thoughout, and I thought the larger class sizes prepared them well for the public school experience.   That said, what I've observed over the course of our family's tenure, has been that it was a good fit for our children who have no behavioral challenges.  If you have any inkling that your child may require special resources or support in the classroom, I'd keep looking.