Asking the Right Questions to find the Right School/Daycare Fit for your Families Needs

Its spring and school will be over for our current students and vacation time will begin. However the journey to finding and researching schools/daycares that fit your needs are upon  us as parents. This is the perfect time of year to visit local schools and daycares in order to get an idea of what their learning environment is really about. Some schools/daycares may start Open Houses in order to recruit for the upcoming school year. Either way as a parent or guardian, you need to be prepared to ask the right questions is essential for your journey.

As an educator for 13 years in  NJ and as a parent of three children (two boys and a baby girl) I am very particular in my choices of schools.There has always been a set of questions I would look forward  to being asked from parents when I did the Open House at school and questions I would ask teachers whenever my sons were ready to attend a new school. It was always important for me to identify what my and my children’s needs were from a school before I could identify what they could do for me. So in the spirit of new beginnings and figuring out what would work best for you, I have listed my top questions to ask your School/Childcare Provider when choosing a new school for you and your child.

What is the look and feel of the school? For me original artwork and socially aware work along the walls helps me to see what students are learning. When I see more kids work opposed to teacher created items, I can tell that a school is invested in seeing their children succeed. Children take pride in their work and schools do to when I see student work decorating the walls.

Does the school have a particular philosophy or educational approach?  Understanding a schools philosophy will help you identify if their approach to learning is similar to your child’s learning style. As a special educator I am often curious to how a school addresses the needs of special needs and at-risk students. This is key for a parent who has noticed they have a child with significant delays with learning and development. I also look for a school that has mastered the art of differentiated instruction because all children learn at different paces and are individuals. Does the school focus on student learning or teaching toward the standardized tests?

How large are the classes? Class sizes in public schools are mandated by state standards, and they will vary from state to state. What is the average class size? Studies haves shown that younger children learn best in smaller environments, but most public schools have far more students. So if the class is large, what is the teachers class management style? Does each class have an aide?  Do students get individualized assignments and unique attention?

What’s the learning environment like?  What role does reading and math play in the day to day learning? Is the environment conducive to learning with hands-on activities or not? Are small groups utilized throughout the day or do students work individually. How does the teacher reach the students? Does he/she lecture or is he/she working with the students in active ways? Is differentiated instruction utilized? How is my child responding to this environment? What are your schools tests scores in math and literacy? 

What kinds of exchanges do teachers have with students? Are the teachers invested in the community and the people who live in them? What kind of connections are made between teachers, students and the community?How do teachers inspire their students thirst for learning? Does the school celebrate various cultures within the school community? 

What does student work look like? How rigorous are the assignments given by the teachers? How do the assignments correlate to the real-world and curriculum standards? What is stressed, quantity or quality when it comes to student work?

How does the school address social-emotional issues? Does the school have specific guidelines and programs in place for helping children develop communication skills and work through social conflicts? Ask the school to describe their approach. Consider whether this will work for you and your child.

What are the discipline and homework policies? As a parent this is a very important question because you need to be familiar with how your school handles these types of situations. If you agree with a schools policies then you are well on your way to figuring what will be the best fit for you and your family. 

How balanced is the curriculum?  It was important that my sons had physical activity as well as arts in their school while infusing the academics of the core subject areas. This provided for a well balanced child. Academics, Athletics, and the Arts were the triple A that I looked for with my children. It was also key to know how often these classes were offered. Kids are inspired to learn when their school has a balanced lifestyle.

What’s the approach toward grades? What is your grading system? Do you use letter grades, a point system, pass/fail or narrative evaluations? What are you grading? What value do you place on what you grade?

For instance, what are your tests, homework, projects, and quizzes worth in order to achieve the final grade for your report card?

Are the needs of boys and girls addressed? Boys and girls at times may have different needs and understanding this as an educator is key to their success. How is this addressed in your school? Do you provide socially aware books for both genders? Do you have a school counselor to address issues that may arise?

Is the library inviting and well-used? What kinds of books are on the shelves? How often do students visit? What do they learn when they go there? Does your library have computers? Are the libraries up to date with the latest technology? Will the students learn how to increase their technology skills if so in what ways?  

What kinds of extra-curricular classes are offered and who gets to do them? What do they consist of? May everyone participate? Does my child seem like he/she would enjoy these activities? 

How do parents get involved in the school? Is there an active PTA? How often are the meetings? Can parents volunteer in the classroom? If you do volunteer, what kinds of activities can parents help with? And will you get to work with your child?

How is information communicated to parents? Do teachers have a website that parents may view what tasks the children will be learning? How do teachers and the administration keep parents informed? Is there a good newsletter? Is e-mail used to communicate with teachers? How often do parents meet with their child’s teacher and how long are these meetings? Are teachers available for additional meetings if needed?

Is there a student government? What role does the student government play within the community? Do students utilize community service via student government? Does student government help to address student concerns and issues?

Do teachers learn from each other? Dialogue between teachers is key when working with shared students. It helps teachers to address issues they make have with a student and allows for constant growth. Ask about how workshops and professional development practices are utilized. What kind of training is offered to the teachers throughout the school year?“

Lastly always ask for a sample of class schedules, rule books, homework samples, newsletters, and policy statements. This will help you to have a better idea of what each school is doing and how they plan to get it done and the end result should be you finding the right school fit.

I hope you’ve found my questions helpful on your quest to finding the right school fit for you and your child. It is a comprehensive  list but you don’t have to use them all and think about it, isn’t your child worth it?  I think so. 

Good luck on your journey!

Nashima Harvey, Ed.M

CEO of THE LITTLE GREEN HOUSE, LLC  Educational Services

All Saints Episcopal Day School: Service, Spirituality, and Academic Rigor

Just an 11 minute bus ride from the vast Hudson River, a picturesque, small, quaint school by the name of All Saints Episcopal Day School resides in the essence  of Jersey City. All Saints is a private, non denominational school which, with its medieval-style buildings that are still somehow unformidable, is a place that seems to have perfected the  academics-and-environment- type learning model.


Schools in Jersey city




All Saints Episcopal Church are specifically committed to instilling a genuine love of learning in their students and to assist in developing their students’ sense of personal spirituality through social action.  The school also ensures that their students learn about different faiths and foster an environment in which diversity thrives.


Here are some of the other core beliefs of All Saints School, taken directly from their website:



  • Children need opportunities to grow intellectually, artistically, emotionally, physically and spiritually;

  • Cooperation and teamwork are key elements for personal development;

  • Children can make a difference by giving of themselves to others;

  • Self-awareness is essential to understanding our connections to our neighbors and our world;

  • Education should instill an appreciation and responsibility for the earth and all living things;

  • Children are best served when families and schools work in partnership with one another.–Philosophy

Pre-schools in jersey city



707 Washington St

Hoboken, NJ 07030


Before delving into the programs, I thought this link provides interesting information on the school’sstudent to teacher ratio, demographics, student population, and other details:




Pre-k schools JC


  Elementary School Program:


   The elementary school division at All Saints includes grades 1st to 4th. When students move from Kindergarten to First Grade, they leave the Early Childhood Center to the building on Washington Street, which houses Grades 1-8. During the elementary school years, the staff at All Saints begin to become more independent and can take more ownership of their education. The curriculum and instruction is very hands-on approach and students begin to participate in community service activities during their elementary school years.


For more information on the general elementary school program and individual grades, click here;



Middle School Program:


middle school jersey city


   The middle school division includes grades 5-8. The curriculum and instruction is dedicated to the social and cognitive development and growth that takes places during this age and academic level. The program is also focused on preparing students for high school and both, learning core subjects as well as social skills is emphasized during this academic level.


For more information on the Middle School Program at All Saints, click here:


  Other Programs:


elementary school jersey city


  Besides core classes, special subjects are also integrated into the curriculum at every grade level. These special classes include  Art, Technology, Theater, Dance, Music, Physical Education, Health, World Language, and more. School performances and assemblies also take place throughout the school year which can range from school plays to dance performances to forums on school leadership for fourth graders.


Tuition and Financial Aid:


The tuition at All Saints Episcopal Day School is $18,700/yr for students from Kindergarten to the 4th grade. For grades 5-8 (middle school), the tuition is $19,600. Financial aid is available for those who apply for aid and who demonstrate a need. For more information on payment plans, how to apply for financial aid, and additional fees, click here:–Financial-Aid


Parents’ Reviews


“My son is thriving at All Saints, and we are thrilled to be part of such a fantastic educational environment. As a current kindergarten student, he is truly excited about going to school each day. He has grown so much since his first days as a student in the school’s Nursery Program. The teachers and staff are warm and nurturing. And the school’s curriculum is engaging and comprehensive. All Saints is truly a wonderful school.”

Posted by a parent on 10/08/13 on


“Our son has been attending All Saint’s Day School since nursery and is now in fifth grade. Our son loves his school! He is happy and feels safe and comfortable in his environment. There are so many things we like about the school but to name a few we like that they have a challenging curriculum and we appreciate its core values and beliefs. As well, the school has an excellent system and policy regarding parent and teacher communication is that is effective and an emergency system that works well for reaching parents at a moment’s notice. The school offers music, arts, languages, and sports too. The school is major part of our lives and we could not be happier with our decision to remain at All Saint s. Thank you All Saint s! -All Saint’s parent”

Posted October 30, 2014

– a parent  on




Interested in learning more? To schedule a visit, email the Admissions Office at [email protected]


For more All Saints Day School’s contact information, click here:


So, what do you think about this school? Do you think you might be interested in sending your children to All Saints? Besides the seemingly impressive curriculum and community service student participation, the school’s buildings and exterior are lovely and look like something straight out of an amusement park!


Private schools in JC


Related Blogs:Scandinavian School, The Waldo School, Apple Montessori School, Hudson Montessori School, List of other schools



The French American Academy: A Multicultural, Student-Focused Learning Environment.

In today’s technologically driven and globalized world, a school like the French American Academy meets the needs of students to be culturally educated and skilled for the demands of society, the world, and life.

The French American Academy is an educational institution from Pre-K to the 5th Grade. The school has three campases locations in New Jersey:

Jersey City Campus

209 Third Street, Jersey City, NJ 07302

Phone Number: 201 459 6462

This school has only Pre-K to  3rd grade

Opening Middle School 2016


Morris Plains Campus

131 Mountain Way, Morris Plains, NJ 07950

Phone Number: 973 206 1114

This school has only Pre-K through 1st grade


New Milford Campus

1092 Carnation Drive, New Milford, NJ 07646

Phone Number: 201 338 8320

This school has Pre-K through 5th grade



The French American Academy describes itself as a progressive and nurturing school. The school hopes to instill open-mindness, empathy, and cultural enrichment in their students through utilizing both French and English languages in the instruction and curriculum

Below are some key facts and accreditation on the school. This was taken directly from the Academy’s website:

  • . “We are fully accredited by the French Education Ministry up to 5th grade”

  • “We are accredited by Middle States Association and licensed by the State of NJ”

  • “We continue to provide differentiated instruction within small class size.”

  • “We have equipped all elementary classrooms with interactive boards. Apple computers and Ipad are part of the learning experience.”

  • “We are proud of our co-teaching in science and our bilingualism work in the classrooms”

( Accessed 2015 March 14).

  The schools also provide various  enrichment activities, such as after school French programs, Adult language classes, and Private lessons which  are all  available in each campus.. For more information on program activities and the school’s memberships, click here:


Since the French American Academy Jersey City campus location includes only Pre-K to 3rd grade, I will be focusing on those specific programs. Contact information and information on the Jersey City campus founding and opening is here:



The French American Academy prides itself on providing more than a daycare for its preschool students. The program is centered around language, social skills, and individual independence. The curriculum includes both spoken and written language, motor skills, and math and science through learning time and exploration of the environment

For more details and information of the Preschool Program, click here: .



Starting in Kindergarten, a special focus on reading is included in the curriculum. Fluency in English is stressed at this grade level and French is also  taught more extensively as a second language than it was in Preschool.

1st Grade:

Mathematics is taught in the French language starting from the First Grade. The math curriculum includes problem solving, calculation, geometry, measurement, numbers knowledge, and problem solving.

2nd and 3rd Grade:

Up to second grade, the social studies curriculum is split between the French and English teachers. Topics in the social studies curriculum include creating timelines, maps, civics, economics, and geography.

Starting in third grade the children will study both United States history and French history.

Music, Physical Education, and Art is also included in the curriculum for all grade levels.


For more details and information on each subject and the curriculum, click here:

 Parents, Teachers, & Community Members’ Reviews:

“The staff is friendly, accommodating, very creative and very warm. The school walls are lined with the children’s artwork and you can see the themes explored by the decorations in the classrooms. My daughter’s teacher has them “play” with shaving cream, and, oatmeal to teach them the letters and numbers; they love it and actually know them now. My daughter didn’t speak French when we started and now she totally understands everything! She even answers in French (short answers but still)! I totally love everything about the school.” (

Posted April 29, 2013

– a parent,


“My 3 year-old son loved going to the French Academy for his weekly class, he absolutely adored his teachers and enjoyed playing, singing and learning French with the same group of friends week after week. We can’t wait for the opening of the full-time school this fall!” –Caroline G. Jersey City, NJ,


To read parent and teacher testimonials on the school’s website, click here:


A School For Your Child?

If you’re interested in learning more about the school and its admission process, request information by clicking here:


Want to attend the school’s open house or go on a tour? Click here:


Finally, if you’re ready, learn how to apply to the school, step by step by visiting this link:

Please note: Although the Academy does not have a middle school (grades 6th-8th), they do plan on opening one in 2016. 

Apple Picking: All About An Apple Montessori School in Hoboken, NJ


Apple Montessori Schools is a network and system of schools in over twelve different locations all over New Jersey. The schools are based on individual student learning and assessment while cultivating an environment where students can develop their personal creativity and self confidence. The Apple Montessori School have various programs depending on the student’s age and the parents’ desire for the form of both academic and personal goals they would like for their child to accomplish. The programs in the Apple Montessori Schools include infant programs, daycare, kindergarten, enrichment programs, after school programs, and elementary school.

To learn more about the school’s philosophy and mission, click here:

Apple Montessori School Programs in Hoboken.

School Address: 1055 Maxwell Ln, Hoboken, NJ 07030

Opening 2nd Hoboken location in spring 2015

 221 River street,Hoboken 

The Apple Montessori School Programs at the Hoboken location range from infant, toddler, Pre-K, Kindergarten, daycare, enrichment, summer, and  after school programs. The Hoboken location does not include an elementary program. The school at Hoboken is open from 7:00 am to 7:00 PM with its daycare open 7:00 am to 8:15 am, and 3:45 pm to 7:00 pm. The school is open from Monday-Friday.

    Infant Program:

     For children from the ages of six weeks old to 1 and a half years old, this program’s schedule is entirely catered to the child and his/her “natural timetable” and habits. The ratio for child to adult is four to one or less with one caregiver assigned to each child. The role of this caregiver is to monitor the student’s behavior and to record and communicate accomplishments, concerns, and areas of potential growth to the child’s parents.

This programs includes fun and enriching activities such as baby yoga, food tasting, music, and sign language. A separate nap room is also provided and children may nap when desired.

For more information on the general infant program, go here:


    Toddler Program:

        This program is catered to children from the ages of 18 months to 2 years. The curriculum is centered around instilling character development such as kindness and encouraging individual curiosity. Teachers do various activities with the children and also take them outside to play if the weather and environment permits.


The toddler program has both part-time and full-day options. It is worth noting that various meal options are provided since children at this age can be very picky eaters.

For even more information on the general toddler program at Apple Montessori Schools, click here:

Pre-k and Kindergarten

             This program provides a strong reading, math, and writing curriculum. The materials used appeal to all five different learning styles. The curriculum also includes music, art, character development, computers, and Spanish. Moreover, practical life skills are also taught in this program. These practical life skills include cleaning, pouring liquid, buttoning, tying shoes, and other practical life skills needed for children at this age. For children between the ages of two to five years.

For more information on the general Pre-K and Kindergarten program, go here:

Day Care Program

  If you’re looking for a program that more closely emulates a day care rather than a classroom or if you need your child to be looked after their school program is completed, the Hoboken location of Apple Montessori Schools offers a daycare from 7:00 am to 8:15 am, and 3:45 pm to 7:00 pm.

 FasTracKids Enrichment Programs

  For children between the ages of 2-6 years. This program focuses on the brain development, self confidence, creativity, and intellectual abilities of each child. The curriculum fosters communication, collaboration, and critical thinking skills. Apple Montessori Schools claim that the “FasTracKids program increases vocabulary as well as social behavior 100% – 150% faster than peers, while school performance improves 1-2 grades” (

Summer Camp

Always looking for new ways to keep your kids entertained during the summer? Want them to do something besides sitting in front of the TV all day long? Apple Montessori at the Hoboken location offers a summer camp program which includes providing the children with fun, healthy, and educational activities such as arts and crafts, field trips, swimming lessons,music, dance, drama, science/nature programs and lessons, cooking lessons, camp clubs, karate lessons, and technology.

For more information on the Apple Montessori Schools summer program, go here:

Reviews on Apple Montessori Schools

“Our son has attended Apple Montessori School since he was 18 months old and is now 3 years old. When we listen to what he has to say every day, it is easy to see all that he is learning – and it’s much more than just how to read, write and do math! We have seen that Apple Montessori has helped him to develop as a whole person including development of his independence, focus, self-control, and independent thinking.”

~Marc & Caren Murren

There are many testimonials written by teachers and parents alike such as the one above. To view more of these testimonials, click here:

Online Google Reviews rate Apple Montessori in the Hoboken Location as a 4.5 out of 5.0. Most of the reviews, which were posted by parents of student who attended this school, were postivie with the exception of a couple critical reviews.

Google+ User: Huizen66

“My child is super happy and cries to go to school she is having a great time and the staff is so caring. I feel Very comfortable recommending this school to anyone.”

For more reviews of the Apple Montessori school in Hoboken, click here.

I found this interesting news article on the Apple Montessori school in Hoboken by the Hudson Reporter, a local New Jersey newspaper: The article interviews some of the teachers and caregivers at the school while detailing the history and origin of the Apple Montessori schools. The story provides a colorful, first hand account of the school and its daily life.

So, if this schools’ individual, creative, and practical hands on approach to learning appeals to you, head on over to the Apple Montessori Schools Website:  You can request more information, sign up, register your child, contact the school, and ask for a tour!

This is the link to the Hoboken Location of Apple Montessori:


School Directory For Jersey City & Hoboken


Pre Schools/day Cares in Jersey City

The French American Academy 

The French American Academy offers an early-start, gradual immersion, dual language education to students from Nursery through 5th grade. The Middle School (6th to 8th grade) will open in 2016.

The FAA has three campuses in New Jersey : New Milford, Morris Plains and Jersey City.

209 Third Street,

NJ 07302

Please register for a tour at [email protected] .

Please register for a tour at [email protected]              


The Brunswick School 

189 Brunswick Street,Jersey City, Nj 07302, ph.201-420-1550

The Brunswick School is getting closer and closer to announcing its opening date! While we complete our finishing touches and finalize some more Open Information Sessions and Open House dates, we invite all inquiring families to schedule a private appointment with our director to hear details about our entire program! Work long hours?

We have availability weekday evenings and weekends to better accommodate your busy schedule! Email [email protected] or call (201) 420-1550 today to schedule your one on one session to find out why The Brunswick School is the school for you!





152 Plaza 3
Jersey City , NJ 07311
(201) 433-6370



707 Washington St.

Hoboken, NJ 07030

(201) 792-0736

Viaquenti Preschool 

285 Newark Ave,

Jersey City, NJ 07302

Viaquenti Preschool is delighted to be serving children 4 months – 1st grade at two convenient locations in downtown Jersey City!
Our programs strive to enrich students by developing active learners with an international focus. 
Offering bilingual studies and Spanish Immersion afterschool programs.
Now enrolling for 2015-2016 academic year AND our exciting Summer Camp Program!



The Kaplan Cooperative Preschool 

115 Park Avenue – Hoboken, New Jersey 07030
The Kaplan Cooperative Preschool is part of the United Synagogue of Hoboken.  We are a Jewish preschool open to families of all faiths, and committed to providing play-based, high-quality early childhood education to all children.



201 Marin Blvd, Unit 1A

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 793-8949




338 Grove Street

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 918-5623




462 Central Ave

Jersey City, NJ 07307

(201) 461-6161



41 Tuers Ave

Jersey City, NJ 07306

(201) 333-8844




150 Warren St #108

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 333-5600

The Scandinavian School of Jersey City
210 9th Street
Jersey City, 07306



301 Garden St,

Hoboken, NJ 07030

(201) 792-3688




242 10th St # 5

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 309-0440



1 McWilliams Pl #206

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 533-1910



10 Regent Street,

Jersey City, New Jersey 07302

(201) 516-0700



508 Grand St

Jersey City, NJ 07304

(201) 744-9775



Key Information About the School:  Smart Start Academy

SSA accept infants 6 weeks old and up till age 5 years

They offer 2 day program ( t/th)
3 days program (m/w/f)
5 days program (m-f)
Half day program until 12:30 pm 5 days a week

After school program is called  “social enrichment program” (3:30pm -7 pm)

SSA follow the creative curriculum now Reggio Emila Approach

Open House Dates:

Sept 12 we will use the school fair as our open house
Oct 18 (462 Central ave Jersey City loc) 1 pm- 3 pm 
Nov 15 (552 9th st Hoboken loc) 1 pm-3 pm
Dec 13  ( 462 Central Ave Jersey city loc) 1 pm- 3 pm
Smart Start Academy
552 9TH ST
Hoboken, NJ 07030
(201) 461-6363

Pre Schools/day Cares in Jersey City


Apple Montessori Schools Hoboken

Two locations: 1055 Maxwell Lane & 221 River Street


For over 40 years, Apple Montessori Schools have set exceptional standards for early childhood and elementary education. Nurturing the unique potential of each child is the core of all we do.



Pre Schools/day Cares in Jersey City

Tessa International School


Tessa International School is a new school, opening in Hoboken in 2016, which welcomes children from preschool to kindergarten.
Your children will receive a world-class education based on the most successful international models, enabling them to thrive in the increasingly global 21st century.
Our curriculum includes French or Spanish immersion tracks, delivered by experienced and caring educators who consider the whole child.
Meet the Head of School and learn more about Tessa’s curriculum and admissions process, by signing up for an upcoming Open House session or by contacting us:
Tessa International School is conveniently located in the heart of Hoboken, in the Monroe Center: 720 Monroe Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030.


3044 John F Kennedy Blvd W

Jersey City, NJ 07306

(201) 795-4400



248 Luis Marin Boulevard

Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 434-2405

6 Back to school Tips

Summer is winding down (unfortunately) and it’s just about that time to go back to school! Very soon Jersey City Public Schools (and most private schools) begin the 2017 – 2018 school year. I don’t know about you, but I feel like it’s really crept up on me this year. There are so many things to do before school begins that it can be hard to keep track. Here are some ideas that can help you get organized for the new session !

Label It
: One thing that’s generally consistent at every school (especially for the younger set) is that they want EVERYTHING labeled. This can be a daunting task. You can try old favorites like Fabric Markers, but sometimes it’s hard to label all clothing that way, especially on dark colored items. Name Bubbles are fantastic. These labels are durable and laundry-safe (they won’t wash off!), plus you can put them on virtually anything. Not to mention, they are pretty cute looking.

6 Back to school Tips

Change of clothes: The younger set usually need a clean set of clothes to bring to school. This is something you can get done now and put aside for next week. Grab some summer clothes (or a spare uniform, if applicable) and put them into a large Ziploc bag. This way you can label the bag and it can easily be organized with your child’s other school items. The bag also doubles as a laundry bag for the soiled clothes being sent home.

6 Back to school Tips

School Supplies: Shopping for school supplies this close to the beginning of the school year can be a nightmare! The school supply aisles become ransacked and bought out. I like to shop at the Staples in Jersey City for school supplies. The store tends to be a lot less hectic than its neighbor (Target) and they carry pretty much every school supply you will need. Coupons: Check the link for some Staples coupons that you can bring into the store. If you don’t feel like braving the stores, you still have time to shop online! Amazon has its very own Back to School store. If you order soon, you should have it in time for the first day of school, especially if you have Amazon Prime.

6 Back to school TipsSchool Lunch: The age old question…send them with lunch money or brown bag it? Get creative with homemade lunches! Don’t miss this Buzzfeed post “27 School Lunch Tips That Will Keep You Sane,” which includes great ideas like freezing juice boxes the night before to double as ice packs. If you are feeling gourmet, you can try “19 School Lunch Ideas That Are Healthy (Mostly)” from Bon Appetit with recipes like Tomato Grilled Cheese Soup and The Antipasti Plate. Or you can always hit up the Pinterest Boards! To make your life easier, check out these reusable lunch containers with ice packs in the lids or try these reusable sandwich and snack bags.

6 Back to school Tips




School Clothes: Last minute shopper? Don’t fear! Lots of stores are having Labor Day sales this weekend, so you can stock up and give the pocketbook a break, too. Macy’s is having a big sale in stores and online. Click here  for an in-store coupon. Gap is advertising “Everything up to 40% off” in stores and online. Plus, they have great options for uniforms, like khaki pants and skirts. If you need school shoes still, Zappos has a great selection of children’s shoes. As an added bonus, they ship quickly and shipping and returns are free, so you can order multiple sizes if you are unsure.

Get a Haircut: Looking to clean up those untamed summer tresses? There are plenty of options in our area. For the smaller ones, it’s important to find somewhere geared towards young children. Just 4 Kids in Hoboken is a great option for kids of all ages. They are especially good for younger kids. They offer Ferrari and Hummer styling chairs, flat screen TV’s equipped with Apple TVs with Netflix and Hulu. They ask you child what their favorite show is before they even begin. There are also games, balloons and organic lollipops. Tousled Hair Salon is a local option (where you can get your haircut, too!) that offers children’s haircuts.

Parental and Children Engagement Workshops at Bright Horizons in Jersey City

According to scientific research, it is so crucial for parents to be engaged in their children’s activities and play. Why? The ability for parents to be involved in their children’s learning process motivates their children academically, socially, and physically. Not only that, the involvement engages parents to know what is going on in their children’s lives. At Bright Horizons at Jersey City, the center offers activities for both the parents and their children. The activities can include art and music festivals, fitness tip webinars, and parenting workshops.

The Bright Horizons Art Festival celebrates children’s artworks and engages families one night of fun activities such as fine art, music, movement/dance, theater, and culinary arts. In addition to the festival, the center offers free webinars for parents. These workshops highlight parenting skills in benefit of children’s academic and physical well beings. For example the Fitness Tips for Busy Families Webinar teaches parents to schedule children’s events and activities in addition to prioritize fitness and sports. Moreover, the webinar invites a special speaker to help families strengthen their relationships with their children. Getting Out of the House in the Morning Webinar is another great resource for parents to learn about the ways to improve morning routine.

No matter how busy you are as a parent, you should always be attentive to your child’s development either through attending online workshops or in person meetings with teachers. These online workshops will help you better educate your child and enhance the quality of life for your families. Furthermore if you have free time on the side, it is always good to schedule an appointment with a teacher who look after your child in the center because talking to the teacher will get you a better sense of how your child is doing!

If you are interested in the center, Bright Horizons is located at 152 Plaza 3, Jersey City, NJ 07311. The phone number is 877-624-4532. It is open Monday through Friday 7:00am to 6:30pm. The center welcomes infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergarten prep children.


How to Look for GOOD Day Care Centers in Jersey City for your Child

In order to find a good day care center in Jersey City for your child, it takes a lot of work and effort. Search engines are a great way to start looking for day care centers. Search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing are reliable ones to start with. Once you get the results, you browse through them and assess them based on several different ways.

In reviewing them, there are several ways to assess the day care center.

  1. number of star ratings
  2. parental reviews
  3. pictures that are listed
  4. location of the day care center
  5. Time that the day care center opens and closes
  6. Number of teachers and student teachers in the center

In finding the best day care center for your child, you first have to ask yourself what your child needs. For example does your child like small classes or big classes? Are there art classes offered? Are the teachers licensed to be qualified to take care of your child? Are facilitates adequate enough to provide heat during the winter and air conditioning during the summer? These are important questions to consider when choosing the right day care center for your child.

If you want to know more about whether the day care center is right for your child, you can try to meet up with a parent whose child is in that day care center. If you are not able to meet with that parent, you can try to shadow the day care center. You can bring your child with you and see if your child likes the place. In all times, the day care centers would not charge you a fee for doing that.

Day care centers usually run from 8 am in the morning till 6 pm in the afternoon. You can pick up your child early if you want. Lunch and snacks are provided to your child. In the morning, your child studies academic subjects such as Math and English. In the afternoon, your child plays in activities such as sports, art, and music.

What does research has to say about this

The more that your child enjoys the time spent in the day care center, the better your child will be in terms of academic and social development. In knowing whether or not your child likes the day care center, you should always initiate the conversation with your child when he or she gets home. For example you should ask about what activities that they have done and learned.

Day Cares in Jersey City

Early Learning Academy!

Hi everyone! Hope the school hunt is going well. If you haven’t found your school of choice yet, don’t worry, there are still many many options available. So for you mommies who are still on the hunt here’s another school that has an upcoming open house date; The Early Learning Academy! At the Early Learning Academy they welcome all children of the toddler ages and up. They have a classroom system that is sure to keep the students occupied an entertained. If you are looking for a comfortable and highly qualified school for your young ones – who have possibly never been in a schooling environment before – this might be for you and your child. The open house date for the Early Learning Academy in Jersey City is approaching. Please be sure to mark the date on your calendars! 

At the Early Learning Academy they take into consideration that each child learns and develops at different times and through different styles. They aim to teach in various ways so that there is a style being used for each child. The teachers at Early Learning Academy know that for many of their students they are being introduced to things like the alphabet for the very first time. They know that for these students it will take a more hand on approach. Teachers at this school in Jersey City give each topic about a two weeks span so that the children have enough time to understand the topic at hand. Also, whenever possible the teachers in each classroom will use the children’s senses, such as smell, feelings or sometimes taste, to help the children understand the topic that is being taught.

If you would like more information about the Early Learning Academy please feel free to visit their website at Don’t forget you can also visit them on their open house date where you and your child can get a feel on what this school has to offer.

For More info: 201 Marin Blvd, Unit 1A
Jersey City, NJ 07302

(201) 793 – 8949

Early Beginnings Day School! Looking for a preschool that understands how the minds of our little ones work? Perhaps a school equipped with a curriculum that takes into consideration how importance of the first step towards schooling can be for a young child? Well then this school might just be the one for you! The Early Beginnings Day School in Jersey City is a fun filled educational school that seems to have their curriculum in set order in particular for the youngest of young ones because they know what works. Want to give it a look for yourself? No Problem! Early Beginnings Day school is hosting an open house this coming Saturday, November 9th from 10:00 am-12:00 pm. Registration is not required.

At Early Beginnings Day School they offer two different sets of schedules; one of which being the half day schedule. The half day schedule runs from 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm. This program is set to promote language concept, mathematical and scientific thinking as well as artistic expressions. In this program children are kept in small groups ensuring the possibility of individual attention if and when it is needed. Early Beginnings day school allows for children to select activities throughout the day while the teacher is still directing the class to the direction in which it needs to go through.

The other schedule available is none other than the full day schedule. The full day schedule runs from 8:30 am- 2:30pm. This program is set to promote the strengthening of comprehension, decoding and writing skills through different styles of art, such as puppets storytelling, bookmaking and dramatizations. In the full day schedule the teachers expose children to literacy and reading skill development through the set language program. 

Sounds like the school for you? Don’t stop here; feel free to visit their website at . 

For More info:Early Beginnings Day School 

338 Grove St, Jersey City, NJ 07302
(201) 918-5623


The Growing Tree Learning Center II, a program of UCP of Hudson County, provides day care services for children 6 weeks to 4 years of age. Our program is housed in a one story building with ADA accessibility and enclosed playground. The Growing Tree II is made up of four classrooms which each serve a separate age group as specified by the New Jersey Office of Licensing and maintains child/staff ratios in accordance with these regulations as well.

The center offers a nurturing, loving, and warm environment where the children are treated as individuals. The children learn and develop at our center following the guidance of our diverse and certified staff using developmentally appropriate practices as outlines by NAEYC. All of our staff members are also First Aid and CPR certified and re-certification is completed yearly. Our classrooms are rich in literacy and multicultural experiences, since all toys and areas are labeled using the languages that are represented within our center.

At the Growing Tree II we have our own kitchen and a cook who prepares all of our children’s meals fresh and on site. We follow the menus for children as provided by the US Department of Agriculture.  We are both vegetarian and vegan friendly and will provide alternatives or your child on a daily basis. Lastly,  if your child has food allergies and/or religious food restrictions, many will be accommodated by providing and alternative option. The Growing Tree II is a peanut free zone.

At the Growing Tree II, we are open year round! The center only closes for major holidays, professional development days, or inclement weather as decided by city officials.

For More Info: The Growing Tree II Learning Center

160 5th Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302
Phone: 201-386-1502

Baby Galileo Daycare and Preschool in Jersey City


Most schools and daycares I have encountered focus on the betterment and growth of the child. It is very rare that I get to come across a program that goes a little bit beyond that. Well I have found just that; Introducing Baby Galileo Daycare and Preschool. This is a place where they focus on the growth of infants and parents alike. Baby Galileo is a close-knit community that prides itself in encouraging the growth of baby and parent together. They understand that parenting is a learning process and are there to provide any guidance that they can.


Enrollment and Rates

At Baby Galileo Daycare and Preschool in Jersey City, enrollment applications are accepted year round. Applications are currently still being accepted, although space is limited so be sure to get your applications in as soon as you can, if interested. Baby Galileo Daycare and Preschool is open from 7:30am-6:00pm.

Tuition at Baby Galileo changed depending on the amount of days your child will be enrolled into. The tuition prices vary also depending on the age of your child. Parents are given the option of choosing to pay the tuition weekly or monthly. Average tuition pricing goes as follows:


1-2 years old

  • $240-$275 Weekly or;
  • $945-$1,085 Monthly (during a 4 week month) or;
  • $1,185-$1,360 Monthly (during a 5 week month)

2-3 years old

  • $220-$250 Weekly or;
  • $870-$990 Monthly (during a 4 week month) or;
  • $1,090-$1,240 Monthly (during a 5 week month)

3 years old plus

  • $200-$230 Weekly or;
  • $790-$915 Monthly (during a 4 week month) or;
  • $995-$1,145 Monthly (during a 5 week month)

Please be aware that if your child ranges from the ages of 1-2 but is not yet potty trained the tuition will reflect that of a child in the 2-3 year old program.


Delicious and Nutritious!

At Baby Galileo the faculty understands the importance of a well-balanced diet. Nutrition is a huge key to success. Baby Galileo does the best job they can in providing wholesome foods for the children. They also like to explore and introduce new foods. As the child gets older they begin to introduce “finger-foods” and then later utensils. Baby Galileo in Jersey City provides healthy varieties such as cereal, crackers, fruits, vegetables, cheese, juice, milk and so on. The food schedule time goes as follows:

  • Breakfast: 9:00am-9:30am
  • Lunch: 12:00pm-1:00pm
  • Afternoon Snack: 3:00pm

Being that many daycare centers and preschools do not provide food for the children, it is a great relief to know that at Baby Galileo they not only provide food, but also provide a nutritious and enlightening food experience.

Lastly, I would like to tell you about how Baby Galileo Daycare and Preschool divides up their classes, so let’s jump right in.

Infant Room (0-12 months)

  • Individual cribs
  • Each child has their own primary caregiver
  • Changing stations with bathroom sinks
  • Written reports made daily
  • Lullabies and songs sand to babies daily
  • Individual feeding schedule and nap time
  • Infant CPR, background checked, fingerprinted staff

Youth Toddler Room (12-24 months)

  • Same as what is offered to children in the infant room as well as;
  • Other activities such as dancing, songs, learning parts of the body, circle time, colors, moods, counting and shapes
  • Outdoor group play in secured backyard
  • Migration to group meal and nap time
  • Toilet training process if needed
  • Take home learning activity

Toddler Room (24-36months)

  • 5 to 1 ratio
  • Circle time
  • Pre-k curriculum
  • Computer education in classroom with age appropriate software
  • Group meals and nap time
  • Self-feeding and table manners
  • Putty training every two hours if needed
  • Educational videos and materials
  • Changing stations with sinks
  • Infant CPR background checked, fingerprinted staff

Pre-K Room (36 months plus)

  • 8 to 1 ratio
  • Circle time with advanced pre-k curriculum
  • Computer education
  • Educational material
  • Educational videos
  •  Outdoor play time daily
  • Written report given daily
  • Group meals and nap time
  • Infant CPR, fingerprinted staff and background checked
  • Isolation area for sick child parent pick-up


With its organization skills Baby Galileo is a Daycare that is on top of making sure everything is being executed to their standards. If you haven’t been grabbed already, Galileo Dayare and Preschool in Jersey City also offers field trips to their children. They have recently visited places such as the Green Meadow Farm for pumpkin picking, Alstede Farms for strawberry picking to name a couple.

If Galileo Daycare and Preschool sound like the place for you please be sure to give their website a visit. You can find more information and the application there at

I hope everyone is having a great School hunting experience.

Until next time!

Four years ago Vanessa Morales set out on a mission to become a school guidance counselor. Ever since, her eyes have been open to how the education system has been struggling, leading her to the path where she is now; researching on ways to better the education system that exists for young ones. She notes and blogs what she has found that has been working and continues to attend college to further educate herself on what can and needs to be done.