Before you know it, your littles are between the ages of 2.5 and 5 and can start going to preschool or Pre-K! It happens in a blink of an eye and choosing the right Philadelphia preschools is important to ensuring your child has a great experience and develops the foundation for strong academic performance when they’re older. Preschool and Pre-K programs both serve the same age group and teachers meet the state requirements for being an early childhood teacher. Some school districts also offer a transitional kindergarten (TK) program for children entering kindergarten who haven’t attended preschool.
There are also differences between preschool and daycare, with daycare aimed at infants and toddlers needing full-time child care and preschool following a traditional school schedule to prepare for kindergarten.
Finding the right preschool for your child is a huge responsibility as there are a wide variety of curriculum options, types, and programming. You’ll want to select a program that meets your parenting philosophies, makes your child feel comfortable, and also adequately prepares your child to enter kindergarten. We’ve compiled a list of the best preschools in Philadelphia to help you with your research.
Philadelphia Best Preschools
Here are the 10 best preschools in Philadelphia:
Little City Montessori – Combines Montessori Curriculum with Motion
Little City Montessori is an independent preschool that takes the child-led learning of Montessori curriculums and combines it with daily movement activities like dance, athletics, music, martial arts, and yoga. Check out a 3D view of the Little City Activity Center here.
Submit an application to apply for admission. The preschool accepts children ages two through six in a diverse, mixed-aged classroom. Older students are encouraged to help mentor and teach younger children. Admissions priority is given to currently enrolled students and their siblings, diversity, balancing ages and genders of students, space availability, and the order in which applications are received.
1401 N 5th St Mailbox C, Philadelphia, PA 19122 – (215) 764-0633
Learning Central Preschool and Toddler Care – Preschool and After School Care
Learning Central Preschool is an independent 4 Star Facility, the highest rating of Keystone STARS in the state of Pennsylvania, providing preschool and childcare near the University of Pennsylvania. The curriculum is highly individualized to the needs of each child, helping children develop self-discipline, independence, the joy of learning, and self-knowledge through a structured and organized program. Hot nutritious meals are cooked daily from the onsite, commercial kitchen.
Childcare services start for toddlers starting at age 1, with potty training instruction provided, the Pre-K program follows the Pennsylvania Learning Standards, and after school care is provided for school-aged children up to age 12.
5727 Walnut St #33, Philadelphia, PA 19139 – (215) 474-2512
Mi Casita Spanish Immersion Preschool – Learn to Speak Fluent Spanish
Mi Casita provides all interaction and teaching in Spanish, so young children quickly acquire the language. Your child does not need to have a Spanish background or speak Spanish to enroll. The curriculum follows a project-based learning (PBL) model, similar to Montessori, with The Creative Curriculum featuring monthly themes that inspire authentic learning. Teachers create weekly lesson plans that correlate with the theme for each month to provide science, literature, math, and creative play opportunities.
Children can attend Mi Casita starting at age 18 months up to 5 years old. They also offer after school programs for elementary school-aged children, and intermittent adult Spanish classes so parents can support their child’s language learning at home.
1415 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19130 – (215) 232-3222
Beacon Center for Children – Operating Over 30 Years in Philadelphia
The preschool program at the Beacon Center uses a value-centered approach that aspires to develop the whole child. The individuality of every child is celebrated to help inspire a love of learning, build self-confidence and independence. Throughout the day, children are encouraged to be honest, kind, considerate of friends, and flexible. Children at Beacon Center learn by doing, enjoying a thematic approach to lessons with games, songs, movement, manipulatives, and dramatic play. Preschoolers spend time indoors and outdoors, having fun while developing the knowledge they need to move on to kindergarten.
The toddler class is for ages 18 months to 3 years old, the middle class is for ages 3 to 4, and the pre-k program is for children ages 4-6. View the school calendar here or schedule a tour at the Beacon Center to learn more about the preschool program in Philadelphia at 215-963-0748.
2125 Chestnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19103 – (215) 963-0748
TYL II Preschool & Childcare – 15,000 Sq. ft Learning Center & Private Playground
The TYL II Preschool is held in a state-of-the-art facility that also includes one of the largest private playgrounds in Philadelphia and a school-aged annex. TYL II Preschool is a Keystone 4-Star Facility and through a partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Philadelphia, provides universal free childcare for children ages 3 to 5. TYL II accepts childcare subsidies and is a CCIS and DHS preferred childcare provider.
The pre-k curriculum is based on Pennsylvania’s learning standards and all of the age-appropriate educational materials are arranged in learning areas on low, open shelves so children can choose what they want to learn. Children learn vocabulary, language, and math through circle time activities. Also, all children receive a hot, nutritious meal cooked daily from the onsite commercial kitchen. The staff is experienced at potty training
5124 Walnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19139 – (215) 474-9025
Saint Mary’s Nursery School – Non-profit, Reggio Emilia Inspired School
Saint Mary’s Nursery School is a non-profit cooperative in operation since 1964. The preschool curriculum is developmentally appropriate, based on creativity, the arts, and play and the staff focuses on the social-emotional health and development of each child. The curriculum is inspired by Reggio Emilia teaching, which is dedicated to building relationships and learning how to listen and interact with one another. Children enjoy mixed-age experiences as well as same age-group activities.
Saint Mary’s is a Keystone 4-Star Facility. The nursery school program is open to children ages 18 months to five years old, and the after school program is for children in Kindergarten through 6th grade and runs from September through June.
If you’re interested in learning more about the program, attend a virtual tour held every Wednesday morning by emailing [email protected] for a Zoom invitation. Tuition is based on whether your child joins the toddler or preschool program. All enrollment is for full time students, Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm. View tuition information here.
3916 Locust Walk, Philadelphia, PA 19104 – (215) 386-0321
PlayArts – Play-based, Arts Immersion Preschool with Summer Camps in Philly
If you’re looking for a preschool program that excites and builds your child’s curiosity, imagination, and individuality, look closer at PlayArts Preschool in Philadelphia! The curriculum is aligned with the Pennsylvania Early Childhood Learning Standards and is delivered with a play-based approach that children can explore and develop their interests through open-ended and self-guided play. Staff works on social-emotional skills, relationship building, and craft lessons and themes based on the interests of the children in the group.
All lessons are integrated through the arts to give children a hands-on approach, including music, movement, theater, and visual arts. Not only does this increase creativity and imagination, but developmental skills like fine and gross motor, executive functioning, sensory, language, and hand-eye coordination skills are all improved through the arts.
The school day is from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm and tuition is $1635 monthly for children ages 3 to 5 years old. If you require after care, the Club Creative program is available from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm for $260 per month. Siblings receive discounts.
1241 N Front St, Philadelphia, PA 19122 – (267) 225-8434
Four Seasons Childcare and Preschool – Open House Registrations
Four Seasons Preschool is a Philadelphia preschool learning center offering one-on-one attention for infants, toddlers, and pre-K students. Lessons include reading, math, writing, and science, bu also Spanish lessons, and motor and communication skills. Our older children spend time crafting, participating in free play, and enjoying organized activities that promote creativity and learning.
Every January, Four Seasons has an open house registration in January. Registrations are first-come, first-serve. The first tuition payment and the enrollment fee are due at the registration and are non-refundable. The program offers part-time options of Tuesday/Thursday, or Monday, Wednesday, and Friday sessions, or you may choose the five-day program. All sessions begin at 8:30 am and end at 12:30 pm. Four Seasons also offers before and after school care for an additional fee. Tuition is based on the number of days your child attends, their age, and whether you add before and after school care or not. View the tuition and fee schedule here.
433 Lyceum Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19128 – (215) 483-5688
Grays Ferry Early Learning Academy – Hands on Learning
A Keystone Stars 4 designated facility, Grays Ferry Early Learning Academy is licensed by the Department of Human Services and adheres to the Childcare Regulations. The preschool program is open to children ages 3 to 5 years old and is designed to turn your child into an independent and active learner. The school puts an emphasis on vocabulary, social skills, coordination, and intellectual thinking through hands-on learning activities. Our classrooms are set up to allow children to freely explore.
Parents enjoy the Daily Communicator Program that details the accomplishments of your child throughout the day.
1325 S 33rd St 4th floor, Philadelphia, PA 19146 – (215) 634-9777
Green Lane Nursery School – Philadelphia Preschool Operating for Over 40 Years
Open for over 40 years, Green Lane Nursery School helps teach young children fundamentals that will serve them well as they start Kindergarten and throughout life, including communication skills and self-confidence. Green Lane uses a play-based approach with age-appropriate academic activities around math, science, and reading, as well as music, yoga, and art opportunities.
470 Green Ln, Philadelphia, PA 19128 – (215) 487-0740
Top Philadelphia Preschools Map
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