Mi Escuelita Day Care

Berkeley, CA

To see Department of Social Services records on this facility, click on its DSS Facility License # below.

Home-Based Daycare/Preschool
DSS Facility License #: 
Carlos Barraza
(510) 526-4357
N. Berkeley on Colusa
Maximum Capacity: 
Language(s) Spoken: 
English, Spanish
Ages Served: 
18 months - 42 months

Parent Reviews

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Our daughter has been at Mi escuelita for 3 years and we feel so incredibly grateful and lucky to have spent these last few years with such an amazing community. Carlos, Miguel, Arlidys and Loli are absolutely lovely and put such mindful care into everything they do. They really celebrate each child for the individual that they are, and emphasize community, kindness and friendship. It has been so amazing to watch our daughter thrive, build friendships and see all of the social/emotional learning taking place. It gives us such peace of mind to have our daughter somewhere that we have 100% confidence in the care she is receiving. They go above and beyond to find fun ways for the kids to spend their days, from daily walks and outings to parks and the library, swimming lessons at King Pool, music class, soccer, it is really amazing everything they offer! Before attending Mi Escuelita my daughter would get upset with me when I would speak to her in Spanish, and now she really enjoys it and actually initiates conversation with me in Spanish. My daughter is now 5 and will be “graduating” this fall, the teachers have been teaching her how to write and identify letters and numbers. I really appreciate that they don’t “push” academics, but it is available for the older kids if they are showing readiness/interest in learning. They have struck a nice balance of play-based/child led learning and structure that I really appreciate. I can’t recommend Mi Escuelita highly enough!

I couldn’t say enough good things about Mi Escuelita! Carlos, Migues, Arlitis and everyone else there are amazing. As a single father, I am often full of question as to what I’m doing and I have been met with nothing but incredible support. My some is fluent in Spanish and loves going to play with the staff and his amazing friends. The parents are lovely and I feel so grateful we found them. 

Our 4.5 year old daughter has been at Mi Escuelita for the last 2 years and we feel SO lucky to have found this wonderful preschool and community. Carlos and Miguel, the owners are just the best. So are the other two wonderful, longtime teachers  They are so loving and caring with all the kids and the parents. They treat the kids as if they were their own. It’s an amazing situation: 14 kids with 4 teachers in a lovely home-based preschool with an awesome backyard for playing. The school is located in a great neighborhood in Berkeley near Solano Ave. They take the kids on neighborhood walks, walks to the nearby parks and the library for story time. They bring in a music teacher, take the kids to soccer, and in the summer the kids can even have swimming lessons at King Pool. It’s a very supportive, easygoing and caring community with lots of wonderful families. They organize seasonal holiday celebrations, family potlucks, and field trips. There is even a monthly PJ party on Friday nights where parents can keep the kids there until bedtime to have a night off! I just can’t say enough about this wonderful school.y daughter loved her friends and the teachers and is always so excited to go to school every day. We love it.   

Hello! I think Silvia's Montessori daycare may have some openings for an infant. It is a wonderful daycare and we've been very happy watching our child grow! https://www.berkeleyparentsnetwork.org/recommend/preschool/miescuelitamont

We have been at Mi Escuelita for 8 years and we are going to miss Carlos and Miguel so much. They are amazing teachers and have become a huge part of our family. The teachers rarely turn over. With fewer than 16 kids with 4 loving teachers, my boys received so much love and attention. Every day they have fun activities including classes for music, soccer, swimming, trips to the library and walking to local parks. In non-pandemic times, we also had field trips to the zoo and Tilden park. Carlos is so intuitive with the children.  He got my picky eaters to eat and potty trained them too. The community is great and Carlos hosts a family potluck and kids “PJ party” monthly. Alumni kids always look forward to returning for PJ party too. My boys learned/kept up their Spanish at Mi Escuelita and were able to test as Spanish speakers for placement at Sylvia Mendez. We just love Mi Escuelita and you will too.  

Our son just graduated from Mi Escuelita and we can't say enough good things about this preschool. He was attending a larger spanish speaking school (also wonderful) before COVID, but they closed for the pandemic and we needed a new preschool. We lucked out with an opening at Mi Escuelita and it was the best decision ever. Our son was happy there from the first day. In the two years he attended, he never once asked not to go in the morning and often would complain if we picked him up early. Carlos, Miguel, Arlidys and Loly showed such love for our kid and all the kids. They are creative, patient, and kind. The kids have a lot of free play, but our son was also ready for kindergarten. They take the kids on great field trips, host wonderful pajama nights and foster a community amongst the parents. My son learned a lot of spanish but, more than anything, he was truly loved and supported for exactly who he is. He misses his preschool so much and we miss it, too! 

Three years ago, I entrusted the care of our oldest son with Carlos and his incredible team. Since then, my daughter has also attended Mi Escuelita. We are eagerly looking forward to the day when our youngest son is old enough to start! As an elementary school teacher, I am thrilled to see the kids having a healthy balance between free play as well as guided socialization. As a parent, I love knowing that my kids are able to take so many safe walking field trips which means LONG naps! I have yet to hear of another preschool that takes the students on such long excursions to local parks, soccer lessons, swimming lessons, library story times and sometimes just a walk around the block for fresh air. We have participated in many family potlucks and numerous pizza and pj parties (our only chance to have a date night). Two of my childhood friends also enrolled their sons at Mi Escuelita and they enthusiastically endorse this school. The physical environment is well-maintained with a spacious backyard, an inviting front yard and a welcoming indoor space full of educational toys. Here are the endorsements from two of our children: “I like dressing up as a princess and singing in the microphone with Penelope.” “Me gusta la fiesta de pizza y pijama.” We truly feel like Carlos, Miguel, Arlidys and Yuli are our extended family.

We couldn't have been happier with Mi Escueilta. In the three years we were there, I never once felt any concern about our son's well-being or safety there. He came home happy and excited each day. They have a great combination of free play, structured activity and some fun learning (letter,s etc). They organize great additional activities - swim class, soccer class, field trips to Lawrence Hall of Science and the Oakland Zoo. Plus great potlucks for the parents to get together at too. We are committed to raising our son bilingual, and the staff are all native Spanish speakers. We just left to start kindergarten, and the additional support of speaking Spanish at preschool (one parent speaks Spanish at home) helped our son test as bilingual, which helped him get a (coveted) spot at LeConte. He started at age 2.5, and by age 4 we were reassessing whether he should go to a new place with more structured learning. After looking at several other places that get highly recommended we just didn't feel like we could do better than Mi Escuelita. We stayed until our son starter kindergarten, and he is now doing just fine. I can honestly say I have only good things to say about Mi Escuelita.

Carlos and his team are fantastic. Our daughter started at Mi Escuelita when she was 2.5, and from the very beginning she has made friends and learned language and generally looked forward to school (which seems amazing!). She is reluctant to let Mama or Dada braid her hair, because "the teachers do it better." Tonight (and every month) Carlos is hosting an optional "pajama party" for the kids so that parents can have the night off. My wife and I definitely appreciate the date night opportunity! Watching all of the teachers interact with the kids, it is evident that they have a passion for their work. Carlos just won a "Preschool Teachers Make A Difference" award from Habitot. It is well-deserved. Both the indoor and outdoor spaces are tidy and full of treasures for the kids. Highly recommend!

We are so happy to have found Mi Escualita! It is a vibrant place, full of creativity and play. My older son went there for three years and our daughter just started her second year. Carlos and Miguel have created an amazing environment and are constantly thinking up new experiences for the kids, like a campout day with naps in tents and songs around a "camp fire." They also do really fun art projects that are just right for the ability level of the kids. We don't speak any Spanish at home, but after three years at Mi Escuelita our son has conversational level Spanish. His accent is amazing because he learned from native speakers. For our son (who is a bit of an introvert and gets drained in big groups), the small size was definitely a plus, no more than 12 kids at a time. There are four regular teachers and as other parents have said, it is so clear that they adore the kids.

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Aug 2012

Anyone have any information about Mi Escuelita Daycare in Berkeley? I am considering this as a possible option for my toddler and would like to get some feedback from parents who have had a child at this place or currently have a child attending this Daycare. There were a few reviews about it, however, they were quite outdated. Would appreciate any feedback. THANKS

We have been very happy at Mi Escuelita day care. My second child is there currently after my first attended until kindergarten. Some of the benefits: caring, loving staff, a big back yard, daily walks, music classes, soccer classes and if you want to participate the teachers can walk your child to e swim classes at king pool in the summer,frequent art projects. It is clean and has consistent staff... Same teachers for the last seven years or so. They are very open and honest with me regarding my children's behavior. I feel very grateful to have found the school and recommend it highly. Lisa

My daughter attended Mi Escuelita for over a year, prior to entering preschool. It's a great day care with VERY loving staff and tons of fun activities. The backyard is full of kid-friendly equipment and kids have lots of choices for play, depending on mood and/or temperament. My daughter went back for once-a-month PJ parties for a long time after she left the school and she still speaks of Mi Escuelita fondly. Rates are mid-range (or so), safety is high, variety of activities is very good (music, swimming, outdoor time including walks, language, art, etc.) Best of luck!

Both of my sons went to Mi Escuelita and they loved it. I was very pleased with Carlos. He has a great backyard with lots of room to run around. They take the kids on walks and to storytime at the libary once a week. They are wonderful with getting the kids to nap and they do fun art projects. There have been no staffing changes in years - Sylvia and Arlydes worked with Carlos when my older son went there and they are still there now, five years later. They are all great and I highly recommend Mi Escuelita. Hannah

I love mi esculenta The staff are really good and on top of your concerns My daughter was there for 3 years until she starts the kindergarten We still go back and visit - Love the place, give it a try Bouchra

Mi Escuelita is a wonderful place for little ones. My daughter attended for 3 years and still visits. You will not find a more loving group of teachers which was the most important thing for me. It is very evident that they adore children. The 3 teachers have all worked together for quite a few years without any turnover. In addition to the Spanish there are a lot of wonderfully creative art projects, music classes, soccer and swimming lessons in the summer. It is located near a few different parks and close to the N Berkeley library which has a story hour once a week. The backyard of Mi Escuelita is quite large with many fun things to play with and on. Not only is there a huge sand box but an airplane, swings and a trampoline. Another fabulous thing is the monthly PJ party which the kids love and the parents get to go out on a Friday night! Nancy

August 2009

I'm writing to recommend Mi Escuelita day care, where my daughter has been in the past two years. We couldn't be happier with the staff (Carlos, Arlidys and Silvia), all of them fluent in English and Spanish, the facilities (a pretty house with a large backyard) and the activities (music class, library readings, walks to the nearby park, swim classes in the summer...). They also have a flexible schedule (mornings or afternoons, from one to five days a week), and a monthly evening party for the kids -so the parents can go out! Above all, Carlos, Arlidys and Silvia are like family to us, and we can't wait to have our second child to go there as well.

Nov 2007

Re: Preschools with Male Teachers
I'm sorry to hear about your divorce. You did not mention in your post the area where you are looking for a preschool or the age of your child. If you're near Berkeley, you might try Mi Escuelita (526-4357) in North Berkeley. It's bilingual, play and home based. The director, Carlos, is just what you may be looking for in a male role model. Warm, affectionate, and terrific with kids. The other 2 female teachers are excellent as well. My son attended for a year and we had a great experience-- music, art, daily walks, trips to the library. During my search for preschools, the following schools also had male teachers and are worth checking out: Step One, Aquatic Park, Heart's Leap. If you can swing it with your schedule, you might check out a coop, where your child will be exposed to other kid's fathers and you will find a welcoming community. Good luck! anon

Oct 2007

Re: Looking for a small preschool in N. Berkeley
Try Mi Escuelita in N. Berkeley, near Solano. Max 12-14 kids; offers part-time; bilingual Spanish; lots of art, music, songs, reading, daiy walks, library visits, warm, loving care-givers. My 3 year old loves it. Like a great, big extended family for her. Might have part-time openings now. Call 526-4357 raissa

Aug 2007

Wonderful, bilingual home-based day care has an unexpected opening for a child 22-months or older starting in September. If you are looking for group care for your child and want a stimulating, creative, and caring environment, Mi Escuelita, might be right for your family. Our child started last fall, has thrived socially, and now speaks basic Spanish (though we are not native speakers). A typical day includes: circle time, walks to the park or library, free and group play, art projects, and music. There are 3 Spanish speaking care givers for 12-15 children (ages 2-4). The facility is immaculate and has a large backyard space. Please contact us if you have any questions or would like a glowing reference. Call Mi Escuelita directly for an appointment to visit. Contact: Carlos Barraza, (510) 526-4357

Nov 2005

Mi Escuelita Day Care in N. Berkeley has openings for kids 16 mos. and older. This new preschool is run by my long-time caregiver, Carlos Barraza. He has been an in-home childcare provider for both my sons (and several other families) for five years. Now he has his own licensed day care facility in North Berkeley (on Colusa near Marin).

Carlos is amazing with kids: responsible, calm, loving, playful, and creative. His new day care is bright, clean, organized, stimulating, and fun. He offers 3-day and 5-day programs. He speaks English and Spanish fluently and provides Spanish-language learning. He has spaces for kids from 1.5 years old to 3.5 years old.

Contact Carlos for more information, or call me (Kira Halpern) if you want to speak with a reference first. Carlos Barraza, director, (510) 526-4357 Lic #013418318