For: Children who are 3-5-years-old by August 31.
Watch our video to see what co-op preschools are all about!
We sponsor nine low-cost cooperative preschools, in seven cities on Seattle’s Eastside. Your child would attend 2 – 4 days per week, for 2 – 3 hours per class session. Our preschools are very hands-on, play-based, and experiential because that’s how children learn best. Parents work in the classroom periodically and attend monthly parent education sessions. At all Bellevue College programs, parents and children learn together!
What your child will experience at a coop preschool:
Preschool days are full of learning and exploration. Children are guided by a trained, experienced teacher, with the parents assisting. Your child will sing songs, listen to stories, create art, practice drawing and writing, build with blocks, engage in pretend play, explore new materials and experiences, learn pre-academic skills that form the foundations of mathematical and scientific learning, play on the playground or indoor big motor activities, go on field trips, make new friends, build social skills, and get excited about learning and about school.
The programs are play-based because brain development research shows children learn skills and retain information best through hands-on exploration in places where they feel safe and free to explore. Each classroom has several stations around the room, with developmentally appropriate activities to help kids build the skills they need. Children are encouraged to move around and explore at their own pace.
Classes also include “circle time” where the teacher leads the class in singing songs, playing musical instruments, reading stories and developing early literacy skills. This is a chance for children to practice sitting still, listening to a teacher, and participating in a group activity, all essential skills for kindergarten readiness.
What you will experience:
In our classes, both parents and children learn by doing.
When parents work with kids in the classroom, they develop a better understanding of their own children and other children: what’s developmentally appropriate, how temperament affects each child, and how social interactions between children play out. The children’s teacher assists parents in guiding children’s age-appropriate activities and in ways to support children’s learning. Parents are encouraged to continue to develop concepts and experiences with their own children at home.
Research clearly indicates meaningful parent involvement in schools is one of the most powerful predictors of high student achievement and healthy development. During the early years, there is no better way to begin this involvement than by joining a Cooperative Preschool Program.
Parents also attend monthly parent education classes. They are typically held in the evening, in conjunction with the monthly business meeting for the coop. They include lectures, videos, and discussion groups on topics such as:
- Developmental milestones
- Children’s emotions
- Sibling rivalry
- Family communication
- Early learning, literacy, and school readiness
How it works:
In a cooperative preschool, parents play an essential role in the school’s success. Your responsibilities as a parent vary a little from school to school, but in general are:
- Periodically helping in the classroom (typically: twice a month for three-year-old classes, 2 – 3 times a month for four-year-olds)
- Providing snacks several times a year and helping with periodic cleanings
- Attending mandatory monthly meetings and participating in the business of the non-profit Cooperative Preschool
- Taking on an administrative job: serving on the board, taking pictures, making play-dough, etc.
The best part of a coop preschool experience is having your child clearly receive this message: “My school is so important, my parents give it the most precious commodity they have – their time and attention.”
What Our Students Say About this Class and Our Educators
“I don’t think our transition to kindergarten would have been the same without [the] Co-op and all of the support and kindness received from the school. My son is excited about school, but I truly miss the preschool. I appreciate your passion for helping families raise the best children we can”.
Bellevue (Crossroads, Eastgate, Bellevue-Overlake), Carnation, Issaquah, Mercer Island, Renton (Sunrise), Sammamish (Pine Lake), Snoqualmie (Alpine Coop). Each coop is an independent program. Click on the class name below to see their address and to find a link to their website to learn more about the details of that program.
Here’s an overview map of all of our locations (as of fall, 2018).
Classes are for three, four or five-year-olds. Many classes are mixed ages (multi-age classes). Your child must reach the minimum age for the class by August 31, prior to beginning class. Children are not required to be potty trained to attend, but diaper changing may require parental assistance.
How to Register or Learn More about a specific program:
Check out each school’s individual website. To find links to websites, click on the location name in the chart below, then click on the link you’ll see in the blue box. Registration policies vary greatly between the co-op preschool classes. Each individual co-op Board sets tuition.
Contact the Registrar listed for the co-op class of your choice to register for the 2017-18 school year. You can also contact the registrar to learn about open houses, observation times, registration dates, costs, or other specific information not available on their website.
Registrars are parent volunteers. If you find that the co-op Registrar is not responding right away (perhaps on vacation), please contact Wendy, the Registrar for our one-day-a-week classes, for interim assistance.
Cooperative Preschools Class Schedule for 2018-19
|Co-Op Location||Item#||Age||Day & Time||Registrar|
|Mercer Island Learning Lab||7046||3's||T,Th |
|Mercer Island Learning Lab||7056||4's||M,W,F |
|Mercer Island Learning Lab||7059||Explore More|
4 3/4 - 6's
|Bellevue - Overlake||7051||3's and 4's||T,W (3's and 4's)|
Th (4's only)
|BC Crossroads Preschool|
|7042||3's to 5's||M,T,F|
(Register for 2 or 3 days)
|BC Crossroads Preschool|
|7043||Pre-K, 4's and 5's||T 12:15-2:30p|
(Register for 2, 3 or 4 class times in combination with 7042)
|Eastgate Co-Op |
|7048||3's and 4's||W,Th (3's and 4's)|
F (4's only)
|7057||3's (age 3 by 8/31/18)||T,W,Th|
|7058||Pre-K (age 4 by 8/31/18)||F (4's and 5's only) 9:30-12:00 noon||Laura|
|Issaquah Co-Op 3's||7040||3's||T,Th|
|Issaquah Co-Op 4's||7050||Pre-K (age 4 by 8/31/18)||T 12:30-2:45p|
|Pine Lake Co-Op|
|7044||3's (3 by 8/31/18)||T,Th|
|Pine Lake Co-Op|
|7054||Pre-K (4 by 8/31/18)||M 9:15a-1:00p|
|Sammamish Art & Science Enrichment Lab|
|7045||3 1/2 - 5 years old by start of session||Beginning 1/29/19|
|Alpine 2nd Year Toddler Co-op|
|7036||2's (2 by 8/31/18)||W 9:30-11:30a||Emily|
|7052||3's (3 by 8/31/18)|
4's & 5's (4 by 8/31/18)
|T, Th 9:30-11:30a |
T,W,Th (4's & 5's only) 12:00-2:30p
|7049||3's to 5's||T (3's and 4's) 9:30-12:00 noon|
W (4's only) 9:30a-12:00 noon
Th (3's and 4's)
Please note that class times, days, locations and tuition are subject to change.
Last Updated January 14, 2019