70 posts categorized "Preschools"

Do you love your preschool?

January 13, 2006

I've heard from a few mamas recently are looking for preschools in coming months.  In the name of sharing and making connections, we want to hear from you!  Does your child attend a preschool you absolutely love?  Share, share, share!

Helpful info to provide includes:
- General Area (N/NE, SE, SW, NW) and Neighborhood
- PT or FT?
- Approach to play and learning
- any and all of your first-hand experience with teachers, other parents at the school, and other anecdotes.

Escuela Viva

December 18, 2005

Has anyone heard anything about Escuela Viva in N. Portland (close to Emanuel Hospital)?  All I know is that they advertise in MetroParent, the program is dual languange and follows the Reggio Emilia philosophy.  But, any first hand or second hand info would be greatly appreciated; they almost all sound great on paper.  I'm looking at preschools again and would love to find a spanish immersion or dual language program.  Thanks for any info. 

Mama New to the Beaverton Area, Any Advice?

December 12, 2005

my family just moved here from chicago 2 weeks ago. we have a 4.5 year old who was attending a public montessori program there. we've moved here mid-year and have succumbed to the suburbs. we are a little bit lost and trying to find a pre-k that's a good fit for him. we are excited about public schools in the area but were bummed to find out that our neighborhood school doesn't run full days for kindergarten. we were looking forward to portland's options but we've been priced out to the edges. any advice for us? we live in beaverton. my poor son is eating his shirt collars he's so nervous about all of these changes. i'm afraid to just plop him somewhere without getting some idea of what other's experiences are.

Any Immediate Preschool Openings?

December 10, 2005

One of our reader's, Blair, is in need of help and referrals to immediate preschool openings in the NE and SE.  It looks like she's new to the area and cannot really wait until Sept 2006.  For those new in town, Craigslist is a great resource for finding options.  However, weeding through the options may be quite overwhelming.  There are so many aspects to consider: location, cost, hours, philosophy, and availability.  Sadly, sometimes the deciding factor is availability!  Any mamas or papas with advice or leads?  What have you found is the best way to find preschool openings?  It's such an overwhelming task that we can all benefit for what others have learned through their experiences.  As always, thanks for sharing!


December 04, 2005

My husband is Japanese: born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. So my two daughters are biracial. Or you could call them "halvsies" or "hapa" or "mixed". I prefer the term "swirled" (and I love this company's products) because it doesn't have the connotations of "half" or of being only part of something rather than a whole unto themselves.

One concern I have living in South Beaverton is how my children will be accepted into the community and what I can do to help them.  One reason we chose to live here is that there is a community of Japanese and intercultural U.S./Japanese population in this area. However, it is resoundingly white outside of that circle. I worry that I will never really understand my daughters' identities or problems as I am also resoundingly white. (In fact, when we lived in California, I was often asked if my daughter was adopted.) I do not want my children to ever be ashamed or regret their dual heritage.

So this raises many issues I believe I share with Portlanders who have chosen interracial or international adoptions: how much of the non-U.S. or non-mainstream white culture do I encourage in them? By sending them to a Japanese preschool am I hurting their chances of becoming mainstream Americans? Should I send them to the local elementary school (which will be mostly white) or try to find an international school we can afford? How does greater Portland treat ethnic Asians in general? Will my children always have to answer the question "Just what are you anyway?" because we live here?

Since I am new to this area, I don't have much experience with these issues yet here in Beaverton/SW Portland. I may be worrying over nothing. Anyone else out there with a bicultural/biethnic/or transracial family? Anyone else out there experienced a situation where multiethnicity was an issue?

Guide to Preschool Philosophies

November 10, 2005

I was just re-surfing CafeMama's website and found a new addition: her guide to preschool philosophies.  I love it!  It's a great resource.  Thanks, cafemama!

Any Recommendations for Co-Op Preschools in Portland?

November 09, 2005

A mama (Julie) emailed me recently inquiring about recommendations on co-op preschools in Portland.  She currently lives in the 'burbs and is hoping to move closer in with the next year or two.  Her child is 2 years old.

Unfortunately, I have little advice to give since my research has been limited to a couple of full-time preschool programs in the SE.  So, for those more knowledgeable in the area of co-op preschools in Portland, or if you run a program yourself, can you comment on any recommendations?

Finding Daycare, Part 29

November 03, 2005

Good grief.  It never ends, and it never gets easier.  We have two girls, ages 5 and almost 2, and we've had to do the whole daycare search for one or the other each year, sometimes more than once a year.  It is so hard:

- finding your place in the whole gamut of child care / school options -- in-home schools, families to share a nanny with, nannies to share with another family, Reggio Emilio, Waldorf, Montessori, public Pre-K programs, and the list goes on.

- finding something generally convenient -- somewhat near home or work or both, making it accessible for both parents or back-up caretakers in sharing pick-up and drop-off responsibilities.  (For us, this means the inner N/NE/NW areas.)

- finding something affordable.  (I can't believe some schools and daycares hover around the $1000 per month range!)

- finding something practical for a family with two working parents.  We need full-time care!

- finding something that will have an opening for your child at the right age at the right time!

Right now, I am focusing on September 2006, when our eldest will enter 1st grade and our youngest will enter preschool (or pre-preschool).  Can we find them a place to go to a school together?  Yes!

Childpeace Montessori seems like a perfect place in many ways: perfectly calm, decent location for us (4 miles from the house and 1.5 miles from my office), accomodates children from 18 months to 12 years old, a great environment to learn, and an amazing facility with a gym and outdoor play space.  BUT: it's expensive, it's homogeneous (ethnically and socio-economically), and they may have space for just one of our daughters but not both!  IF they could accomodate both of our girls, we may be able to overlook the 'cons' of the matter.  But, if they can't accomodoate both of them, then the point is moot.

Now, the mission is to find two schools that each meet our initial criteria but that are also convenient to one another.  It doesn't seem that the girls can go to the same school until they are both in elementary school.  What's another 3 years of the inconvenience of dropping off and picking up at two different locations?

For girl 1:
Childpeace Montessori for reasons stated above.

Emerson School.  They have a direct instruction program for tons of one-on-one between teacher and child, mixed-age groups make for diverse interactions and problem-solving, it's located near the pearl and old town and urban adventures are part of every day, and it's part of the magnet portland public school system.  Doesn't seem like there are many cons here.

Beach Elementary Spanish Immersion.  Children are great linguists.  Here is more on two-way bilingual immersion.

For girl 2: 
(the main goal is convenience to the above girl 1-potential-schools as well as meeting other criteria)

Fruit and Flower.  Close to Childpeace and highly recommended by others who can't get into Childpeace because of the eon-long waitlist.  We haven't visited yet so we'll just have to see.  Because it attracts a similar student base to Childpeace, I would venture to say that the same pros and cons exist.

Rowanberry School.  I heard great things about this school and it's in our neighborhood but ... OOPS!  It's only part-time.

Trillium Preschool.  It's convenient, uses the community and urban environment as a setting for learning, it's diverse, it's a public magnet (read: "Free")...  and wait, then have an elementary school too!  This is worth exploring.  Potentially both girls could go at the same time next fall ...

And, the search goes on.  It gets so much more complicated when two kids are in the equation.  Whatever we decide, it'll be all good.

Preschools in the SE

October 28, 2005

My son is barely a little over 21 months and I'm already scoping out preschool options. When he becomes potty trained (which seems to be the ultimate milestone for a toddler), we'd like to have him attend preschool which would provide him a bit more structure and an environment more conducive to learning. In speaking with many parents in our neighborhood, three options seem to crop up time and time and again:

1. Abernethy Elementary school recently added half- and full-day preschool options. The program is run by Childworks. The operate other facilities in the SE. UPDATE: The program at Abernethy has moved to 42nd and Salmon due to the fact that Edwards Elementary combined with the students at Abernethy Elementary.

2. New Day School comes highly recommended by several parents for their progressive yet gentle and nurturing approach to teaching.

3. Tucker-Maxon Oral School is attended by yet a couple of other neighborhood kids, and offers another close option. The school is especially attractive for kids who are hard of hearing and deaf. These children are educated alongside their hearing counterparts.

Sarah Gilbert has assembled a great synopsis of other cooperative preschool alternatives on her blog. I'm hoping at least one of these options will be a good match for our son in the coming year. I'm thrilled at the possibility of being able to walk him to and from school.


July 01, 2005

By ages:

  • Two year olds
  • Three year olds
  • Pre-Kindergarten
  • Mixed Ages

By program type:

  • Bilingual
  • Co-ops & Parent Participation
  • Drop-ins
  • In-Home
  • Part-time
  • Preschools
  • Pre-K
  • Special Needs Kids

By Philosophy:

  • Bilingual
  • Culturally Diverse
  • Jewish
  • Montessori
  • Reggio Emilia
  • Religious
  • Waldorf

By Location:

  • North Portland
  • NE
  • NW
  • SE
  • SW
  • Beaverton
  • Tigard
  • Hillsboro
  • Vancouver
  • Other

Blossom House School

January 21, 2005

Some information was sent to us from a parent at Blossom House:

Blossom House Preschool

4000 NE Hassalo
Portland, OR 97232

A Waldorf-inspired preschool based on the natural world that surroundsus. We offer vegetarian, organic meals and homemade toys in a nurturing environment.

Preschool program is from 8:30am to 12:45pm. Aftercare is available until 5:30pm.

We are currently accepting students ages 2 1/2 to 5 1/2 for year-round, full/half day, full/part time.

Hawthorne Family Playschool

1624 SE 31st
Portland, OR 97214

The program is in the mornings, either Monday/Wednesday or Tuesday/Thursday. They also offer a Friday class. Tuition is $75 per month, plus a $235 one-time enrollment fee. The Student-Teacher Ratio is 5:1.

Mt. Tabor Cooperative Preschool

Located in Mt. Tabor Presbyterian Church 5441 SE Belmont St. Portland, OR 97215 503-760-9669 cdjohnk@hotmail.com Visit their website!

Hancock Street Preschool

1624 N.E. Hancock Street
Portland, OR 97212

Lee Owen Stone Preschool

5004 NE 6th Ave. Portland, Oregon 97211 Lee Owen Stone is now located at 2728 NE 34th Ave, Portland, OR.  / 503-735-4755 / info@leowenstone.com. Hours are 9 a.m. to 12 noon, and you can choose 2, 3, or 5 days per week. The 2-days per week are Tuesday and Thursday and tuition is $70 per month. The 3-days per week are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and tuition is $105 per month. The 5-days per week costs $175 per month. Visit their website!

Portland Tillamook Co-Op Preschool

Located in the Laurelhurst Presbyterian Church 935 NE 33rd Ave Portland, OR 503-234-1691 Visit their website!

New Day School

1825 SE Clinton Portland, OR 97202 503-231-7425 Schedule Hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for half days. You can arrive later than 7:30, if you don?t need to arrive that early. The school also offers full-day programs, before and after care, from 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Tuition is $298 - $244 for three half-days (depending on income). The school is progressive and vegetarian and is based on Ananda Marga philosophy and the use of "natural playthings". They also grow an organic garden. Participants must be at least age 2 ? and toilet-trained. More info on their website.

Shining Star School

602 NE Prescott Portland, 97211 503-753-4459 Hours are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., four days per week. The school also offers two days per week program, plus adult and family classes. Tuition is $200/month for four-day program, plus parent provides assistance role one day per week. Enrollment fees are $50 application fee & $75 materials fee. Student-Teacher Ratio: one full-time teacher, plus about one parent for four children. The school's philosophy is "Unique Cooperative Waldorf Kindergarten" for ages 3-6. More info on their website!

Portland Family Freeschool

Opened in 2004 - more info here. 636 NE Ainsworth Portland, OR 97211 (503) 287-4447 Info@familyfreeschool.com

Montessori of Alameda

Pre-School/Kindergarten 3511 N.E 14th ave PORTLAND, 97212 503-335-3321 Phone