Back to Alameda Preschools

Nancy Torres

1523 Willow St
Alameda, CA 94501

(510) 865-6255

6 parents took the survey TAKE THE SURVEY

Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Montessori

From the Director:

The activities the children take part in at a Montessori school are called 'work', rather than 'play.'

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

More Information

  • Tracing paper and other writing instruments
  • A well-stocked bookcase
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

More Information

  • Puzzles
Time & space more

More Information

  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

More Information

  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
Music more

More Information

  • Musical instruments
Visual arts more

More Information

  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
Physical activity more

More Information

  • A playground with climbing equipment
  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Enough room for children to move around and play and a suitable indoor alternative to the outdoor playground on rainy days
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
Other subjects taught Bayside Montessori is a Montessori preschool that avails itself of the many traditional Montessori works that have been developed over the years. In addition, teachers create new Montessori works on an on-going basis.

From the Director:

Activities and learning materials are introduced by the teachers, but the children are encouraged to work on their own or in groups. Independence is encouraged.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Bayside Montessori is a non-profit corporation that was started in 1982 to meet the continued need for Montessori education in Alameda. Our head teachers are trained in the Montessori Method and hold certificates from the American Montessori Society and all our teachers have many years of teaching experience.
The preschool/kindergarten class is designed as a two to three-year program for children between the ages of three and six. Children attend our preschool program five days per week for three hours a day, with extended hours available in the afternoon program. Classroom placement is based upon teacher and staff recommendation.

Bayside Montessori's programs include art, music, language skills, math skills, daily living activities, cultural units, small and large motor development, and the development of sensorial discrimination.

Maria Montessori developed the Montessori Method at the beginning of the twentieth century. As a physician and scientist she observed that children had highly absorbent minds and natural learning potential. Montessori realized that young children are in a sensitive period for order. That order is essential for their sense of well-being and helps them make sense out of the world. At the same time children need to move and learn by manipulating objects in their environment. When children are allowed freedom, they will meet their own needs, increase their attention span, and learn to make responsible choices. The classroom materials are self-correcting so children will have a successful experience in each undertaking and move systematically from concrete to abstract activities. Children work on an individual basis so they can proceed at their own pace and foster an innate sense of self-motivation and joy of learning.

In a Montessori class the teacher prepares the environment to meet the needs of the children and allows them to explore independently. The overview of the classroom and careful observation are the touchstones of teaching, permitting the children to guide the teacher as to what their needs are. Each child learns through experience rather than being taught by the teacher and therefore develops a sense of self worth and his or her capabilities. The teacher creates an atmosphere of respect for the children and the environment.

At Bayside Montessori we take great pride in our programs and welcome you to visit our school. We do not discriminate with regard to race, religion or ethnicity.

A Typical Day

Daily Schedule
Consistency and routine are an important part of our program. It helps the children feel safe and secure and to fully benefit from their experience at school. The different phases of the day are equally important. Therefore, it is vital to adhere to the schedule, ensure your child arrives promptly, and is present for his/her entire school day.

The day is broken up into different sections. The following is a typical daily schedule, which may vary due to initial phase-in, inclement weather or special activities.

9:00-9:40 Outside Time
9:45-10:05 Circle Time
10:10-11:40 Work Time
11:40-11:55 Story Time

Kindergarten and Extended Day:
12:00-1:00 Lunch Time
1:00-2:00 Group Time
2:00-2:30 Individual Work Time
(A rest period is offered after lunch to children under the age of 5 who are staying for the extended day/kindergarten programs.)

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

Parents observe their child in the classroom twice a year. Parent/teacher conferences are held twice a year. We also have a 'Parent Night' each year when parents come to the classroom and work with their child. Parent education meetings occur once a year. Newsletters are sent home at least once a month. Parents are contacted by the school whenever an issue arises at school. Parents are also encouraged to call the teachers with any concerns they may have. Teachers are always available to discuss these concerns. The teachers are happy to discuss kindergarten placement with parents who ask for advice in this regard.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Small group sessions
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

New children meet with the teachers (and their parents) one week before the start of the school. We 'phase-in' the children in small groups to ease the separation process. This goes on for 2 weeks. The teachers provide extra attention to children who struggle with separation. Parents are consulted as to what separation techniques work best for their child.