Poll: What's the Best Preschool or Day Care in Weston?

Vote in this week's poll between now and Friday.

There is a myriad of choices in town when it comes to signing your child up for preschool or day care. Now Weston Patch is asking which is best, as a part of a weekly Weston Patch "Readers' Choice" series. 

Here's how it works. Vote in the poll below. Then add comments supporting your decision. You can also leave a review on the business's listing in the Patch Places pages.

The poll closes at 9 a.m. Friday. Because this poll isn't scientific, it isn't the sole consideration in choosing a winner. The winner will be determined by the Patch editor, based on poll results, comments on this story and reviews on Patch Places. Please vote only once per survey.

Last week we began this new series, asking who makes the best sandwich.  beating out Theo's Pizzeria & Grille.

This week's poll asks which is the best preschool or day care (including nursery school programs and pre-K). Here are this week's choices, and links to their Patch Places listings: Beginnings School, , , , , ,  The Mosaic School.

Nancy Vona March 05, 2012 at 08:51 PM
We loved Roxbury-Weston Preschool for our kids. We liked the program so much that we drove from several towns away. The program is excellent because it incorporates various learning philosophies and really prepares children for kindergarten in a kind and inclusive environment. Small class sizes, an awesome playground, and experienced staff make the program great.
Katharina Wilkins March 05, 2012 at 10:45 PM
We chose North Ave Nursery School for our daughters because of the exceptional teachers, the small classrooms, and most importantly, the curriculum that I think is the perfect mix of teacher-directed and free play activities. I can tell that the transition from North Ave to kindergarten was absolutely smooth and perfect for my oldest, NANS did a great job preparing for it. She was ready! My middle daughter is currently enrolled and while she's a very different personality than my first, she too, thrives and shines in the amazing program. I feel like each child's being met with nurturing and love, and the teachers take a personal interest in every single one of them. We're a North Ave family all the way.
Annie Bourne March 06, 2012 at 12:45 AM
We could not be happier with North Avenue Nursery School. The "Younger Class" teachers (one of whom is also the Director, Jill Harris) are magicians with 3-yr olds. With Miss Wendy and Miss Jill, the kids learn to discover, play, experiment and socialize in wonderful, accepting ways. North Ave kids go forth into the world with fabulous fundamental friend-making skills. The "Older Class" teachers are also very very special, and gently introduce the 4-year olds to more advanced projects, handwriting-without-tears. Somehow, the kids simultaneously explore and develop focus. The children's friendships and respect for one another seem to deepen and expand throughout the year. We are delighted with every aspect of the education at North Avenue. The families we meet there also make it a very special experience for us, and our daughters. Weston is lucky to have so many great schools, and we think North Avenue is particularly special. Please come see for yourselves!
Kelly K March 06, 2012 at 02:49 AM
I am proud to recommend North Avenue Nursery School, it's special in so many ways. The teachers are exceptional, they truly are the best at what they do. North Avenue provides a warm and nurturing environment where even the most timid and shy child will come out of their shell. It gives you that "warm and fuzzy" feeling that you want when you shop preschools. The Younger class is the perfect first school experience for any 3 yr. old. The teachers get down on the child's level they talk to all their "friends" with respect and love making it an easy place for them to adjust to and to gain new experiences whether it is making a new friend, playing with different tactiles, reading a story, doing yoga, dressing up, or simply painting a picture in a creative way. The Older class is just as special but with a bit more curriculum thrown in helping those children achieve confidence, patience, and the knowledge to ready them for the move onto Kindergarten with ease. I could go on and on but the fact is we love North Avenue!
Sara O. March 06, 2012 at 03:04 AM
North Ave. has a great feeling of warmth; the teachers really care about the kids. You also get to know the other families and children really well--my sixth grader and fourth graders still have best friends who they met when they were three!
Elaine Duguay March 06, 2012 at 04:18 AM
We love North Avenue Nursery School because of the teachers, curriculum and families. All of the teachers have been with the school for many years ( I.e. no turnover issues) and have an incredible sense of warmth and compassion for the kids. It's a traditional pre-school, but the curriculum ensures for proper transition to kindergarten. In addition to the wonderful teachers, innovative curriculum, the school really prides itself on nurturing a close knit family community by sponsoring many school events for families to get to know each other. The school makes it easy for parents (whether you are a working parrnt or not) to feel intimately connected to the school and to get to know the parents and students really well. I can't say enough about this school.
Audra Myerberg March 06, 2012 at 02:26 PM
We LOVE Beginnings School and have sent two children through their great program. They have flexible hours, warm fun teachers and an admin staff that is very visible and hands on. Their campus is huge with an amazing garden and lawn area for soccer. They even have an outdoor classroom and a stream that my son loves to explore with his teacher. Dr Houseman (the founder) is very approachable and her social/emotional intelligence curriculum is amazing. I will miss Beginnings very much when my youngest graduates next year.
Rebecca March 06, 2012 at 04:58 PM
We have been thrilled with our experience at North Avenue Nursery School. My oldest son graduated from the program last year and had a seamless transition to kindergarten, where he has been confident and prepared to take on anything they offer. My second son is currently in his second year here and is thriving. The teachers truly are exceptional and offer a wealth of experience from years of teaching together while at the same time being innovative. There is a strong sense of comfort and nurturing in both classes with enough "hidden learning" to make even my inner Type A personality confident that they are getting any preschool level academics they could possibly need while having a wonderful time playing with their peers. I would strongly recommend NANS to anyone looking for the best preschool option for their child.
Molly March 06, 2012 at 06:07 PM
Our family has been thrilled with Beginnings. The teachers are wonderful and creative. The facility is terrific, including the outdoor classroom and the garden. I love the focus on play, emotional intelligence and preschool academics. They do such a great job of exposing the children to variety of activities including sports, yoga, languages, art, science, math. All in a fun, playful environment. It is such a wonderful school with so many resources. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a preschool.
Susan Littlefield March 06, 2012 at 07:35 PM
It is such a pleasure when your children love to go to school! All three of our boys have attended Beginnings, and each grew tremendously while there. Beginnings really imparts a strong sense of community and a deep love of learning in the children. My boys are all very different from one another, and the program was excellent for all of them. One of my best memories was when my eldest found his words there to tell his friends when he did not like what they were doing. This has served him well in many situations as he has grown. He is also a champion for those who have not found their own voice. I also remember fondly when my middle son would leave each day, his classmates would give him a hug and wish him well--such a loving community. My youngest is still there being stimulated every day. He is able to leverage his learning there in so many ways and be very creative at school and at home. He has been "educating" me about all the countries his class has "visited" this year. As a family, we have enjoyed many wonderful days at Beginnings!
Ayako Anderson March 06, 2012 at 08:25 PM
When we moved into Weston, I took time to visit almost all the preschools in town, and North Avenue Nursery School really stood out. Being a teacher myself, I valued the quality of interaction between the children and the teachers. They really care about each child, and my sons needed a nurturing place just like NANS. Now my sons are happy, positive and caring students thriving in Kindergarten and 3rd grade. Thank you NANS!
Kara Fleming March 06, 2012 at 11:28 PM
Roxbury Weston Preschool is such was such an amazing school for my children. The teachers truly understand how children think and develop and can relate to them on their level. They taught my kids how to resolve problems and understand others, important social skills that took them beyond the playground. My kids were more than ready and prepared for kindergarten.
Winnie Hagan March 07, 2012 at 12:29 AM
In a community with multiple high quality early childhood programs, Roxbury Weston Programs' Preschool is a stand-out! The organization also provides an extended learning program for Kindergarten through Grade 3 children in Roxbury. NAEYC accredited since 1997, the teachers are responsive and sensitive to each and every child in the program and relationships with children and families are authentic and high quality. The curriculum is cutting edge, the teaching is world-class and the physical environment is beautiful. 'Roxwes' provides children and families with a culturally, racially and linguistically diverse learning community that's been practicing social justice pedagogy since 1965. It is a shining light for the whole community! Winnie Hagan
Tracey March 07, 2012 at 12:46 AM
North Avenue Nursery School offers a truly exceptional pre-school experience. The loving, caring environment makes every child feel valued and respected. Incredibly experienced and talented teachers focus on each child as an individual, and allow each child to learn, explore, and be creative in classrooms filled with an ever-changing variety of age-appropriate activities and projects. One favorite experience for my 5 year old was "Beach Week" ( in the winter) when she was in the younger class: at the beginning of the week, there was a large plastic pool filled with sand/ sand toys and sea creatures for the children to play in, and at the end of the week, the children got to wear bathing suits to school and "swim" in the pool at school. I cannot say enough about this wonderful school, and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a wonderful pre-school experience for their child!!
Mary Pat Hinckley March 07, 2012 at 01:20 AM
Roxbury Weston Programs is not only a wonderful preschool and afterschool program, its a community that lives long past preschool. The friendships and relationships established between families of diverse backgrounds has given my children an understanding and appreciation of the world they live in. The teachers are the best at what they do as evidenced by how well Rox Wes kids transition into kindergarten and life.
Nikki Moore March 07, 2012 at 02:49 AM
We are happy to be a Red Barn family. We were at a few other area preschools before finding Red Barn Nursery School and can say we have truly found our "home". We have two children attending this year. The teachers do an amazing job facilitating the play- based curriculum while each day mixing things up and making learning fun. Communication between teachers and parents is fluid and encouraged. I've routinely emailed and had phone conversations with my children's teachers. There hasnt been one instance when Janet Kahane the director wasn't available to talk about issues small or large no matter how busy she is. A truly genuine and caring person with years of preschooler experience. The thing that strikes me most about Red Barn though, is the sense as you enter the school that you are among family. As a coop, Red Barn parents volunteer in the classroom and are actively involved in running the school's daily operations. Working together creates a strong sense of community; A community brought together by our strong commitment and love for our children.
Michele Grave March 07, 2012 at 04:46 AM
Beginnings School in Weston is an absolutely outstanding preschool with a SPARK kindergarden option. My husband and I have seen our daughter become a more confident preschooler, taking risks and initiating conversations with adults and teachers since her enrollment two years ago. The comprehensive feedback from her teachers has been both accurate and informative on a daily basis. This school has truly made learning a fun and enjoyable experience through field trips, weekly lesson plans, and parent-teacher interactions!
Michelle Callanan March 07, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Redbarn is an excellent choice for our family. Janet, the director, greets families every morning and makes a point of learning not only the childrens names but also the parents. The class sizes are small with a lead and an assistance teacher, as well as a parent helper and "floater" teacher available for extra support. My daughter loves going to school and we have enrolled both our girls for next year. I can't say enough about how fantastic our Redbarn experience has been!
Andrea F March 07, 2012 at 09:04 PM
Andrea F We are delighted with North Avenue Nursery School, and couldn't be happier. The teachers have the perfect blend of teaching and nurturing which introduce our children to the joys of school and learning. They are keenly aware of each child and we have been impressed with their depth of knowlege and understanding of our son. My son loves the school, and most often comes home and tells me school was 'great'. We feel the same way!
Zachary March 08, 2012 at 12:43 AM
It has really been wonderful to hear our children talk about their experiences at North Avenue Nursery School. As a father of a current student and of a NANS "graduate", I have watched them develop their creativity and confidence during their time at this school. As another parent noted above, it really is a great mix of free-play time and structure- and the free-play opportunities go way beyond blocks and play-dough. The teachers (who all work very well together and have been together for quite some time) get remarkably creative with their themes and take them to a whole new level, which just adds to the fun for the kids. You can't go wrong with NANS.
fred March 08, 2012 at 01:30 AM
We moved to Weston about 2 years ago. My wife and I spent a considerable amount of time evaluating all all the pre-schools in the area. What we liked the most from North Avenue was the time that the Director of the school Jill Harris spent with us to discuss the program, the school community and methodology of teaching pre-school children. She spent over 45 minutes with us. Her passion for teaching, the school, and the children was so evident during our discussion that it ultimately made the decision for us to send our daughter to NANS. We have never regretted our decision and have enjoyed the relationship we've developed not only with Jill but the other teachers - all who are so approachable, caring and willing to take time with you on a daily basis to discuss any concerns or to just give you an update on what is going on in the class that day. I highly recommend NANS to any parent looking for a traditional nursery school with teachers who go beyond the extra mile.
Lynne Goltra March 08, 2012 at 02:15 AM
Our family has been at North Avenue Nursery School for the past two years and has had a fantastic experience. I say "our family" because the teachers are dedicated to giving both the children and their parents an incredible experience. The teachers excel in communication, really talking to and interacting with the children in ways that they understand and is nurturing for them, and putting tremendous effort into letting parents know what is happening with their children with frequent chats, emails, written updates and conferences. While the physical site is perfectly designed for this age group, everyone knows that it's the teachers who make a school special and that is where NANS really stands out. The teachers are all extremely experienced, nurturing, creative, and committed. Our second daughter will start NANS in the fall and we feel very lucky to have our children cared for and taught in such a wonderful program.
Janet Marshall March 08, 2012 at 02:49 AM
Roxbury-Weston Preschool is an exceptional preschool. Founded in 1966 on the principles that every child no matter what culture, what language, or what color they are they are valued for who they are! The preschool is second to none! The breathtaking playground is spacious and is surrounded by lovely woodlands. The teachers are absolutely amazing and dedicated to educating the whole child. The friendships made here are long lasting! Many alumni return regularly to visit ! The deep, long-lasting relationships forged between Rox-Wes teachers and students is evident when you see the teachers at the Weston Public School events such as concerts, art shows, and middle school and high school theatre productions!
Kristina Lukas March 08, 2012 at 12:33 PM
The teachers at North Avenue are truly extraordinary. The kids are loved and nurtured throughout their morning routine. The school has a cozy family atmosphere with plenty of time for the younger kids to explore during free play or make choices to experiment with creative activities such as cooking, painting and various crafts. The daily circle time routines are extremely comforting for my 3 year old who recites and sings at home the many songs and rhymes that she learns during this time. My daughter can't wait to go to school every day!
Liz Darling March 08, 2012 at 03:21 PM
We have been thrilled to be a Weston Wing family for six years. Ione, the director of 33+ years and the wonderful teachers make it an extraordinary place for children to grow, play and learn. The teachers truly love what they do and it comes across every day in the classroom. Curriculum is taught in an absolutely age appropriate way so that makes it so much fun for my kids to learn and explore the world around them. The varying themes introduced to the children are wonderfully diverse and exploratory, opening their imaginations and curiosity. All of this is done in the most caring and nurturing environment I could hope for in a nursery school. I would highly recommend Weston Wing to any family looking at nursery schools in the area.
Debbie March 08, 2012 at 03:54 PM
We have been with Beginnings since September 2010 and cannot say enough wonderful things about the school, the teachers, the parent community, the campus and the incredible development our son has enjoyed in that time. It was tough for us to move to a new school, after 3+ years at another daycare, but our son (and we) adjusted in no time and has made such wonderful strides in prep for kindergarten and life. He has developed social skills (coping and talking out your problems, beign a good friend), academic focus (letters, reading, learning about so many great topics), a love of learning, and wonderful, warm friends & teachers. It came highly recommended to me when we were evaluating a number of local pre schools, and now I truly understand why!
Abby Jordan (Editor) March 08, 2012 at 05:03 PM
Thanks for all the thoughtful comments - just a note that voting and commenting will close Friday at 9 a.m. Winner announcement will be at noon.
Jenn H. March 08, 2012 at 09:47 PM
I work for a company called "IMAGINATION RUNS WILD" and I attend many schools around the area including The Mosaic School in Weston and in Jamaica Plain. I have been working at the Jamaica Plain location for over 5 years and I now that this wonderful school has expanded I now work in the Weston location. The Mosaic School is the most cleanest and safest school for your child to attend. The owner and the staff of both schools are absolutely amazing in so many ways. They not only welcome you in with smiles on their faces, their love is shown through out their ways of teaching. They are very loving and also very caring to each child's needs. My favorite thing about The Mosaic School is that you truly feel like one big happy family. I would like to thank Kim and the staff for all they have done. =)
Lisa March 08, 2012 at 10:54 PM
North Ave. is truly exceptional! The teachers have a way of interacting with the children that leaves me awestruck. They are also all very experienced (no turnover problems here) and have amazing insight into any issues your child might have - they've seen it all and know how to deal with it! My son, who insisted that he was not going to go to preschool, was begging to go on days off within a few days of starting there. We could not have had a better experience!
A. Liss March 09, 2012 at 12:31 PM
I have been a part of the Beginnings School family since my daughter started this last September, 2011. What made Beginnings school stand out was the exceptional attention to emotional developement. In this day and age it is so important to be able to teach not only fundamental education, but emotional skills to cope with everyday life in an uncertain and very hectic world. The teachers are amazing and give the individual attention each child deserves. I have been more than overwhelmed with the program in its entirety. The parent association, admin staff and teachers work together on many activities for the children. This past weekend the school held a "Goodbye Winter" Festival with educational activities for all ages, a children's music concert and even a show filled exotic animals. It was a joy to watch all the children enjoy the festival and all the parents volunteer their free time to contribute. I recommend Beginnings school to anyone, it is truly a wonderful place for your child to learn and grow.


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