Which Preschool Is Right For You?

If you're thinking about sending your child to preschool this Fall, NOW is the time to get to know Livingston's best.

Thinking of sending your child to preschool in September? Now is the time to start looking!  Even if you’re a stay-at-home parent, preschool is a great way to enhance your child’s social skills, develop an interest within the child to learn, allow them to thrive in nurturing environment away from you, and give yourself an opportunity to catch a break! 

With Livingston being a very family-oriented town, we’ve got quite a few preschools to choose from. Check out these premium preschools:

  • Weekday Nursery School, 294 W. Hobart Gap Road, (973) 992-1203.

When I was looking for a preschool, I asked around and everyone in my neighborhood recommended Weekday, which is part of the West Essex YMCA. 

My daughter now goes there for many reasons:  1) The teachers are amazingly responsive and truly partner with you to make sure your child is getting the best care possible. 2) The education level is solid. 3)  They’re flexible and understand that sometimes you’re running a little late for drop off and pick-up.  As long as you don’t abuse their flexibility, they work with you. 4)  Your child does not have to be potty trained to go. 5)  It’s probably one of the most affordable schools in town.  6) Since it follows the Livingston Public School calendar, when my older child is off or there’s a delayed opening, the schedule is the same at Weekday. 7)  They have family events so that parents, staff, and kids can all get together.

Weekday offers care from 7:30 a.m. to  6p.m. and it accepts children from age 2-1/2 through 5.  The school will hold its Open House on Thursday, March 22, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Peanut Shell Child Care Center, 706 Regent St. (973) 533-1511.

Also owned by the , Peanut Shell offers more full-time care than Weekday.  It accepts children from the ages of 6 weeks to 5 years with their hours of care from 7am to 6pm.  Peanut Shell is holding its Open House on Saturday, Feb. 19, from 10 a.m. until noon.

  • Livingston’s Little Learners, 105 E. McClellan Ave. ( 973) 992-4200.

This school prides itself on its personal approach, which emphasizes engaging the children in conversation and helping them to build relationships and develop social skills. Classes are for 2 1/2 to 3 year olds, 3 to 4 year olds and 4 to 5 year olds. Full-day and half-day curricula are available. s hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

  • Aquinas Academy Early Childhood Center, 388 S. Livingston Ave. (973) 992-1587.

This boasts a “faith-based” early childhood program in a “spiritual environment” and is the training site for Seton Hall University and Caldwell College education majors.  Classes are for children ages 2-1/2 through 5 with its hours of operation from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can learn more here.

  • Little Tots Academy, 30-34 Okner Parkway, (973) 597-0778 . 

This, located right off Route 10, meets the needs of the community through extended daycare sessions as well as age-appropriate half-day and preschool programs.  It operates from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. year round. Learn more here.

  • Early Childhood Center at Temple Emanu-El, 264 W. Northfield Rd., (973) 992-6174.

Seeking to “create the opportunity for each child to become respectful, responsible, independent, and creative individuals” their also offers an introduction to Judaism.  It accepts children from the age of 6 weeks old to Pre-K.  Hours of operation are from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Learn more here.

  • Little Angels Christian Montessori School, 304 S. Livingston Ave., (973) 992-0334.

 This early learning center provides a Montessori-based education, which integrates Christian principles, however the school welcomes students of all faiths.  LACM has programs for children from the ages of 2-1/2 to 6 and operates daily from 8:30am to 3:30pm.  The school offers a discount for sibling enrollment and can accommodate certain special needs children.

  • Philip J. Solondz Preschool at Temple Beth Shalom, 193 E. Mt. Pleasant Ave. (973) 992-6546.

The facilities, at this preschool, are organized so that the child chooses what activities to do as they engage in “healthy exploratory play, self-initiated creativity and tradition-oriented activities.”  This school also integrates a into the program to encourage attendees to “identify with the Jewish community at large and to feel a pride in being Jewish.”  They accept toddlers through 4 year olds and offer two, three, or five day programs. Learn more here.

  • Suburban Torah Center Nursery School, 85 W. Mt. Pleasant Ave., (973) 994-7225.

This facility is a “modern nursery school for two, three, and four-year old children.”  The school offers a flexible schedule and includes a drop-off program for one-year olds to come for a few hours per week. Learn more here.

  • Tutor Time Child Care/Learning Center, 650 S. Orange Ave., (973) 758-1070.

At , they believe that “secure relationships with responsive and respectful adults can provide the basis for a lifelong love of learning.”  Their facilities offer care for children from the age of 6 months through Pre-K and they also offer a private kindergarten program. Learn more here.

  • The Early Learning School of Temple B’nai Abraham, 300 E. Northfield Road, (973) 994-7016.

The objective of this school is to provide “an educational and emotional foundation for success” when the child enters kindergarten.  They accept newborns through five-year olds and runs daily with early drop-off and extended care available.  are open to members as well as non-members. Learn more here.

Choosing a preschool can be tricky.  Still confused as to which is best for your little one?  Here are some resources to check:

And if you don’t see your favorite preschool listed, tell us in comments or email Livingston Patch @ marilyn.lehren@patch.com and we'll add it to the list.


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