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The Snuggery (Berkeley, CA)
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I would love to hear some recent reviews of the Snuggery from current or recent parents. How did you feel about the quality of the teachers? Was it a nurturing place? Anything that you wish was different? What do you like/dislike the most? If you chose not to send your kid there, why? Thanks
The main focus seems to be on helping the kids to interact with each other and the teachers in a respectful and courteous manner. They definitely work on all the tasks of preschool, and teach the kids about sharing, taking turns, how to treat friends and other kids. They focus on a different theme every month and tie in books, art, movement, and exploration of their surroundings on that theme. There are also many different cultural themes and celebration of holidays from many cultures.
The facilities and materials don't look new, but the environment is plenty warm and nurturing. The size is small enough for all the kids (age 2-6) to know each other well and many of the parents are friendly and open to play dates as well. The ratio of teachers to children is well under state mandate.
The school has a strict no peanut policy and also limits certain types of play, which some families find restrictive. No gun/violent play is allowed, and by extension no superhero play. Anything too ''scary'' is discouraged. Also disney princesses, barbies, and similar dolls are not allowed when the kids bring books or toys to share. snuggery parent
Re: Need a new preschool in Berkeley
Hi, The Snuggery near downtown Berkeley (on McGee near University) is a great preschool with openings. Our 10-y.o. daughter went there and is still connected with many of her friends from preschool - in fact one is here right now for a pla ydate. Now our 3-y.o. daughter goes there - same staff, same routines. We really like it. They do celebrations from around the world (Japan, Africa, Mexico, etc.), and their staff and student population reflect similar diversity. They also do art, music daily at circle time, etc., etc. It's not a high-end preschool, which makes it affordable, but it's cozy, established, and well-run. Good luck! Abigail
Re: Preschool in north berkeley/albany with openings
The Snuggery in central Berkeley might be a good fit. Diversity is one of its greatest strengths, and it has well under 50 children. It's number is 548-9121. Jennifer D.
Re: Play based pre-school for 2.9 year old
My 3.5 yo son goes to a play based school in Berkeley called The Snuggery. The rates are quite reasonable, the staff is friendly and good with kids, and the kids all seem to love it. The age range is 2-6, and the class is all one, mixed age, with a low ratio. They take kids in diapers and will work on potty training with you. They have openings currently. Give Nancy a call at: 510-548-9121 Heather
Re: Any openings at your kid's great preschool?
I think the Snuggery on McGee just south of University has openings because we had planned to go there, but then we got spots in a school right near out house (so we cancelled very late). Our friends are very happy at the Snuggery and we would have sent our kids there if the closer school hadn't come through. Give them a call to schedule a visit. The director is Nancy Tagami and the number is 548-9121. shanta
My 4-year-old son has been at The Snuggery for one year now. We have really enjoyed the school and found that it offers so much more than was apparent at our first school tour. My son has enjoyed the art projects, cultural celebrations, and the daily games set up for the children's play and inspiration. I have enjoyed the structure provided for the school week, from ''Kindergym Day'' on Monday to ''Share Day'' on Friday. The Snuggery offers great programs for the parents too, including a bi-annual Potluck Dinner, night-time seminars like ''Kindergarten Prep'', and parent-teacher conferences. This upcoming year, my son will meet with the pre-K group in the afternoons to learn the academic basics. During circle time, he is currently learning about time, days of the week, numbers, and letters in addition to sign language and singing. I toured a number of schools before deciding to enroll in The Snuggery. One of the things that I like best about this school is that they don't spend a lot of time and energy recruiting new families. They don't have an open house presentation, numerous tours, and an elaborate application process. They keep it simple and straightforward. This keeps tuition low and ensures that your money is spent on your child. I highly recommend The Snuggery. LKG
Re: Any preschools with 2 days/wk attendance?
The Snuggery may be the preschool that you are looking for. It is a great school and they offer flexible schedules. It may take awhile to get the 2 days that you would like however. You may have to enroll in the available days to start. This will give you first priority when openings do become availble on your preferred days. http://www.snuggerypreschool.com/ Good Luck with your preschool hunt! Snuggery Mom
Re: Looking for preschool with ''no peanut'' policy
Though not in your preferred area, the Snuggery Preschool in Berkeley has a peanut/nut free policy. The staff is very knowledgeable and they make sure no peanut/nut products enter the school. Kids wash their hands and faces after lunch. They are also trained how to use the epipen if needed. Besides making sure your child will stay safe, their program is very good. I'm not sure if they have any openings coming up, but call Nancy Togami, director, at 510-548-9121. Idit
Re: Berkeley preschool for African American 2-year-old?
My son goes to The Snuggery on McGee near University. The Snuggery, although it seems to have a lot of girls right now, is really a very diverse place. My son has and has had friends who are white, black, asian, female, male, foreign--you name it. The staff is also diverse (black, white, asian, hispanic) and the school's curriculum focuses on celebrating a wide variety of holidays and events (e.g. Black History Month, Lunar New Year, Cinco de Mayo, etc.). Snuggery Mom
I've had my 4 year old daughter enrolled full time at The Snuggery since Jan 2006. The Snuggery accepts kids ages 2-5. I appreciate that The Snuggery makes efforts to include cultural events. They invited a story teller for African American Awareness Month and another story teller for Lunar New Year. My daughter even got to be part of their dragon parade down University Ave.
They also have a community minded philosophy. The older kids frequently help the younger ones in partner pairs by finding their lunch boxes or holding hands while crossing the street. I love that my daughter is learning the idea that in this world, we have to take care of one another. On a weekly basis, in addition to their circle times and art activities, The Snuggery has a yoga, sign-language, and dance class. They also walk to the local parks and the downtown YMCA for Kindergym.
INFO: The Snuggery Open 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM http://www.snuggerypreschool.com and for more parent recommendations check out: http://www.snuggerypreschool.com/parents.htmdes1
My usually upbeat and resilient son cried every day before school for six months. He would get very upset in the evening if the following day was a school day, even attempting to bargain his way out of going. Totally out of character. He said the teachers were ''very mean''. After many months of this, attempting to weather the transition, I took him out and he has never exhibited that genuine fear of anything since. Since then he has attended other programs that we have all been quite pleased with. bb
Re: Affordable Pre-school for Toddler
Try The Snuggery on McGee Avenue at University in Berkeley. My daughter graduated there last fall - though she attended only 4 days per week, the price was well below what you are seeking, so maybe full-time would be within your range as well? Warm atmosphere, caring staff, good enrichment - give it a try! Lisa
The school was very good about celebrating diverse holidays, managing kids who were being toliet trained and dealing with positive and firm ways to keep the children behaving in socially acceptable ways. The teachers took the parent-teacher conferences seriously and generally showed care and concern for the children. My children are still friends with many of the kids they met at the preschool as are we with the parents.
The building is clearly not as fancy as some of the other preschools around, but then again, the price of the care is lower than many other schools. It was a good nieghborhood school for us.
I just wanted to voice (again) my recommendation for The Snuggery preschool which just announced openings in June. My son graduated last year, and I am' even more enthusiastic about their program now that I have seen how well it has helped him adapt to kindergarten. I miss the extent of the multicultural exposure he had at the Snuggery, and the wonderful sense of camaraderie that we all shared with the staff and families. It's a wonderful program. They don't have beautiful facilities (the house seems at first glance a little rundown) or the newest toys, but each child is loved and honored there. And each child comes away with a solid sense of self as part of a community. We certainly intend to send our second son there as well. Feel free to contact me if you have additional questions. Natasha Z
The Snuggery preschool in Berkeley has openings for children aged 2 1/2 to 5 1/2. Hours are 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM. The school is located at 2008 McGee Avenue in Berkeley, phone (510) 548-9121.
I recommend the Snuggery highly from personal experience. My first two children, ages 7 and 9, are Snuggery graduates, and my yougest, age 4, has been a Snuggery kid for 2 years now. The school has been in operation about 15 or 18 years now; they have two dedicated co-directors and a staff well-trained in early childhood education. They are located in a former residence with a big back yard that has both sun and shade.
When my kids first started going to the Snuggery, I smiled when I said "school", but I'm very serious when I say it now. The Snuggery is very educational in a warm, non-forced sort of way. They have a variety of well-planned activities with light educational value throughout the day, and lots of interesting toys, puzzles, etc. which are rotated to keep the kids interested. My 3-year-old's favorite acticity is "circle time", when the teachers and kids all sit in a circle, sing songs, and use their hands or their bodies to illustrate the words of the song.
The Snuggery has firm but gentle discipline and clear, well-defined rules ofehavior. I am pleased at the way that the teachers settle disputes by encouraging the children to take turns explaining to each other what they want. Even the smallest children are given the time and encouragement they need to "use their words".
If you have further questions about the school, feel free to contact the school directly. If you would like to discuss the school with me as a Snuggery parent, please call me during the day at 642-8163 or after hours at 549-2086. I can put you in touch with other Snuggery parents if you wish.
The Snuggery is located on McGee and their hours are 7:30am-5:30 pm; currently tuition is $565 a month plus 6 hours of parent "work" per year. Their number is 548-9121.
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