Preschools for 18-24 month olds

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Preschool for 18-month old

Oct 2011

I am looking for a preschool for my son when he is 18 months old. He's currently 7 months old, but loves to play with kids. I was going to wait until his 2nd birthday to enroll him, but I am considering doing so earlier. We are on the waitlist for two excellent preschools, but both start at 2 years of age. Do you know of any preschools that are worth looking into and start at 18 months? I'm open to part-time or full-time possibilities. Mom of active baby

Our daughter (19 months) is at St. Johns Daycare on College Ave at Garber. We LOVE it there! They start with teeny tinies, then move to the ''Wobbly'' room at around 18 months. And then there is a bigger room for the 3-5 year olds. There are tons of activities (from art, to books, to outdoor play, to songs and music, etc.) and the whole atmosphere is very relaxed, loving and fun. She has also been learning things that I never would have thought to teach her at home. Their website is: a parent

Both of my children (now 3 and 5) started attending Grand Lake Montessori shortly after they turned 2. However, they take 18 month olds and I would've gladly put them in there had the timing been right (and space had been available). I love the school -- it's an incredibly nurturning environment and my children have both thrived there. They've learned to be such independent and compassionate children, with such great manners and habits. My daughter was very tentative in starting preschool, but quickly felt at home in the toddler class. The teachers are extraordinary at GLM: I've had great respect for all of the ones my children have had and still have, and most of them have been at the school for many years. The parent community is also wonderful and very welcoming. I feel very lucky that my children have had this experience and although paying for preschool is no fun, GLM has been worth every single penny when I think about how well-spent my childrens' time has been there. Huge Fan of GLM.

Preschool Option for 18-month Old

June 2011

Our daughter will be 18 months old in January and we'd love to find a preschool in Berkeley she can attend a couple of days a week. Any suggestions? Most preschools don't start taking kids until they are 2 or 3 - and she's definitely going to be ready by Jan. Thanks for any advice. John

Our daughter was ready for more social interaction at 18 months as well. We started at Skytown ,, May 2010. Skytown is a play based preschool co-op in Kensington that has a toddler program. They teach the Reggio Emilia approach. We have also taken advantage of their extended day program, until 3 pm, when naps got later & later.

We are about to transition to the preschool room and are looking forward to a relatively smooth move because our daughter knows the room, students, parents and teachers so well. I believe they do monthly tours for prospective families. Lots of options for buyout if co-op hours are not best for your family. Ruth

Toddler-to-Preschool program for 18-month old

April 2010

Please help me find a toddler program (with transition to preschool) for my 18 month old daughter in the Oakland/San Leandro/Hayward/Castro valley area. I have been trying unsuccessfully for 4 months now, and I'm becoming increasingly distraught. What I am looking for is:

1. Center based- not in-home. 2. Not Montessori. 3. Not religious. 4. Play based with structure. 5. Clean, clean, clean. 6. Low staff turn over. 7. Modern facility with spacious indoor and outdoor areas. 8. Minimum of 3 full days of care per week (7:30-5:30)

Blue skies is full... Mills College Children's School is full... is that all there is? I would also be willing to travel farther if necessary. Thank you so much for your suggestions and advice. I really need some help soon- I'm losing all hope. anon

For an Oakland play-based pre-school that is structured and caring, I'd recommenend Chatham School . The Redwood Road campus is spacious (opening more space in the fall too) with library room, music room, role-playing area, a ''circle-time'' area and a lunch area. Ourdoors is either concrete or big sand-box area, but they have toys, balls, bikes, and plenty of space. Lunch is provided, and is varied. Cost is reasonable, and I believe there are 3, 4, and 5 day options.

The staff is great, the director maybe a bit scattered, but they care about the kids. They accommodate infants, toddlers, and pre-school kids, and my son has made some great friends. Note that Chatham also has a lower campus next to Redwood Heights Elementary, but I am not familar with that facility. anon

Sorry missed the original post so not sure where you're looking geographically, but the Mustard Seed Preschool in Berkeley (near Monterey Market) takes kids starting at 18 months old, and my son has thrived there for the last year. It's a program with both structure and play, teachers are wonderfully caring and very involved, and facilities are great. It's not a small school (about 50 kids total) but the youngest class has no more than 10 kids (usually 8) and 2 teachers which is a good ratio. We have been very happy with our experience there. Mustard Seed fan