Preschool Considerations for Denver/Lakewood/Wheat Ridge Area

Updated on January 15, 2009
E.B. asks from Denver, CO
8 answers

Our little girl just turned one and according to some moms, I am way behind in choosing a preschool for her. Not only that, some claim that I may be completely out of luck in terms of waiting lists, etc. Since this is my first child, I had no idea you had to start this process so early!

Currently, I am trying to figure out which type of preschool (Montessori, Waldorf, etc.) would be the best fit for my daughter and to just go from there ... I'd like her to start when she's two. Moms, I would love your insight into all different types of preschools in Denver and in the western burbs, since that's where my husband works. Also, if you have any insight into how behind I really am, based on your own experiences, I would love to know that too. Thanks.

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More Answers

J.Z.

answers from Denver on

Our daycare is great they focus on free play and are Waldorf based. Sunflower Hill is located on S. Univeristy about 1/2mi. south of I25 and University exit. They go for walks to one of the three local parks weather permitting and have a great backyard for the kids. Personally I think getting the kids outside is essential and too many places have limited access, and if they can go to local parks then I think it's a bit like a field trip everyday. Also Sunflower does a variety of family acitivities like a latern walk, advent garden, halloween parade, which I think helps to make parents, treachers and kids feel a bit more like a family - so try and find places where they do some acitivites outside the realm of just daycare (and gets us as parents prepared for the a future life of outside school activities). I think you're on the right time line for getting her in at two. Just make sure to visit the preschool a few times with your little one (@ different times of day), and ease into the transition to make life easier all around. Allow a month to three month transition period for your little and yourself, we were able to stay at the daycare and help out a bit during her first couple of weeks there and that really helped our DD get adjusted to the situation.

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S.B.

answers from Denver on

My kids went to preschool went to a YMCA preschool and it was fabulous. The staff was super - and they had much less turnover than I expected. The facility was excellent and very clean (we went to the Schlessman Y at Yale and Colorado Blvd) and very reasonably priced. We only had to wait a few weeks for a slot to open up. My son started at age 17 months and stayed there until he started kindergarten. They have an equally excellent facility at the Southwest YMCA I'm told.

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R.S.

answers from Denver on

E.: WOW! I read the responses and was very suprised. i guess the first thing you need to do is decide what kind of money you can spend and what kind of time you can commit.

I didn't start looking for a preschool until my son was about 2-1/2 (i wanted him to start when he was 3). I chose a public preschool--Tanglewood (that's in the applewood area)--this past year they tore down Tanglewood and built a new school and renamed it karen litz or something like that. (i'm sure you can find it listed under the jeffco schools website)

the teachers were awesome and since my son wasn't quite potty trained when he started school they helped with that too. I wasn't looking for a daycare situation since I am a WAHM but really wanted him to start in school. It was the best situation for us.

good luck!!

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J.K.

answers from Denver on

Temple Emanuel was a wonderful preschool for our kids. My daughter went when she was 2 and I love the fact that the kids are placed into classes by their birthdays so everyone is within months of each other.

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H.O.

answers from Denver on

Hi E.~ My daughter goes to a wonderful, play-based, cooperative preschool in NW Denver (39th and King). Steele Cooperative Preschool is in its 26th year. As a cooperative, the parents are responsible for the running of the school; we hire a licensed director and licensed teachers, but the parents fill remaining functions (including aiding in the classroom about once a month). The parent time commitment is based on the position you choose, but runs about 2 hours a month plus aiding. Children can start at 2 1/2. Our 2 1/2-year-old classes meet one morning a week. Our 3-year-old classes meet twice a week, and our 4-year-old class (pre-K) meets three afternoons a week. We do not accept applications before the enrollment period of the current year (usually mid-Feb to mid-March)---so we don't establish multiyear waiting lists! If you are interested, feel free to contact me for more information.

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J.L.

answers from Denver on

Ok, don't freak out. If you are wanting her to start at 2 good luck. Most start at 3 unless they are a childcare setting. Montessori is great. My daughter was at Family Star Montessori until she is 3. They cater to CCAP or have few openings for full pay and unless you can afford more than $1400/month and they are full day care. Its great, they have a low child/teacher ratio which most do the max. We also have our 4 year old now in a dual language montessori, Valdez Elementary, but they start at 3. Don't worry about waiting lists. I haven't found any that are more than 9months and those were childcares. Most preschools start registering in January for the following school year and places like Family star are like any other childcare centers.

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P.L.

answers from Denver on

Hi! I, too, am starting to look at preschools for our 16 month old. Guess I'm REALLY behind! haha. Had no idea either. Not sure where we're going to be living though next year, but I'd like to get some ideas. Can you PLEASE let me know what ppl suggested as to preschools/montessori schools? Email me at [email protected]____.com

Thanks SO much!!
P.

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C.E.

answers from Denver on

E.-

I'm sorry people are already freaking you out about this! I didn't have any idea what I was doing with my first either and started looking around about 3 months before I was ready to put them in - I was fine. There are A LOT of preschools out there and you'll find one that works and is perfect for you.

I looked at Montessori and was very impressed - liked it and so did my child, however, we then chose FBC Preschool and Kindergarten (Bowles and C-470). I wanted my children to have more structure than they give them. And, I liked that FBC was a Christian school.

Both my little ones went there for 2-3 years before Kindergarten and then onto Elementary school! One of the great things about FBC is the kids don't have to be potty trained and they will help you with the process if you'd like them to!

Good luck!
C.

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