Pre-K Activities -- Events -- Recent Activities


Dear Parents:

Happy New Year to you and your family! On behalf of all of us at Pride and Joy Preschool, I want to thank you for enrolling your child in our preschool program. Your precious little ones deserve the best care and education possible, especially in their first 5 years before embarking on kindergarten. We are grateful that you have entrusted us to be a part of your child’s educational journey. I assure you that we are committed to doing our best to meet the early childhood educational needs for all our kids. As parents, you will always be concerned about your child’s health and safety while in the care of our program. At Pride and Joy Preschool we take great care to keep our staff well trained in health and safety practices, and we also carefully follow the requirements set forth by the California licensing agency that provides oversight of all childcare centers and schools. Thank you for your prompt attention to our periodic requests for documentation. This information keeps us compliant. We have completed nearly 30 years of successful educational programs for children in our community! Our number one priority is your child’s health, safety, and positive experience. We will always respect your child’s personal rights. We want your child to enjoy this preschool environment as a place where it is safe to explore, investigate, learn and play freely. We want to continue to invest in your child’s growth and happiness. That is my personal pledge to you.

For more information about our program and educational philosophy I encourage you to review our website at We will continue to provide you with new information over the coming months to help you be well informed and to get the most out of the Pride and Joy Preschool program. Thank you for the opportunity to work with your child(ren!) Have a wonderful, abundant, and prosperous 2018!


Moilan Manning

Executive Director Pride and Joy Preschool, Inc.

Spring 2013

Greetings Pride and Joy Families!

Springtime has arrived! The sun is shining the birds are singing – it’s a beautiful time of the year.

Please mark your spring calendars with the following days: Monday May 27th – Memorial Day Friday June 7th – Parent and Staff Meeting Day Thursday and Friday June 20-21st – Summer Recess Thursday and Friday July 4th-5th – Independence Day Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed for normal operation on these days.

The last few months have been very productive for our preschoolers and toddlers. There have been many activities that have captured the imagination of the children. One of the more recent activities that really took off was Group 4’s robot family, seen here.

The robot project was a great way to teach our children about caring for the Earth. After reading a special book about the three R’s (reuse, reduce, and recycle) the children decided to make a robot out of recycled materials. With the help of some parents and families we gathered materials and began to create a robot. The children responded so well that we decided to make a whole robot family (Mommy Bot, Daddy Bot, and Baby Bot). Thank you to all of the parents and families that collected and donated materials.

Group 3 also has been crafting with recycled and repurposed materials. They are in the final building stages of their galactic rocket. The group 3 children’s fascination with flight and space has given birth to a pint size rocket ship. Over the coming weeks as the finishing touches are carefully added by our wonderful group 3 children they will be ready to “launch” their project into imaginary orbit. Stay tuned for more details on their progress. The rocket project can be seen here.

As the spring months arrived so did the sunshine and rain. Our preschool students capitalized on the nice weather by preparing our garden and sowing seeds. This year the children wanted to grow our old standby of sugar snap peas. They also wanted to grow watermelons. The children always enjoy a good reason to play in the dirt. In a few short months we will once again have healthy and tasty treats from our own garden. Check out the gardening pictures here.

One other very interesting plant the older preschool class has been taking care of has a pretty big appetite. Avery’s family has kindly brought a Venus Flytrap to school for the children to watch grow and eat some critters from outdoors. The children have been mystified by the quick movement of the plant’s “jaws” as it chomps down on it’s next meal. Many of the group 4 children have gone above and beyond by bringing in tasty bugs from home. The preschoolers really have enjoyed watching the plant feed and learning about carnivorous plants!

The preschoolers are not the only ones who have been nurturing some seeds to life, the toddlers have also been talking about and growing their own plants. Each of the toddlers have been watering and watching bean plants grow in their growing cups. Currently they have been watching their little seedlings spread and grow healthy green leaves. The toddlers have been talking about what a plant needs to grow and each is enthusiastic to water their precious plant each day. Keep an eye out for their special plants as they continue to grow!

We have also had a few special guests that have visited our school over the past few months. In February a new friend came to visit the school. The children were delighted to meet this new friend and show her around and play with her. Although she was many years older then the preschool and toddler classes all of the children still took very good care of her. For the weeks following many children asked each morning when Sasha the dog would return to play. The children also learned about some of the things you need to do to care for pets and were excited to spend some time with a friendly pup.

In April we were fortunate to have the parents of Ari in group 4 put on a concert for us. Ari's mom, Liz played the cello and Ari's dad, Marc, join in on the french horn. Our preschool room filled with the sounds of popular children's songs, "silly noises" from the french horn, even a birthday song to celebrate Ms. Erika's birthday. The children were captivated and many announced that they will be musicians someday. We would like to thank Marc and Liz for sharing the gift of music with us. You can see these special guests in the photo album here.

The Toddler group has also been exploring many different mediums for art and sensorial projects. All of the children just love new projects, sensorial tasks and art pieces. Our halls and bulletin boards have been stuffed with the projects they have been working on. Keep an eye out for many new things that the group 2 children will be bringing home. You can also see some of their projects here. With all of the various art projects these students have been working on they have been beginning to learn about colors, numbers and shapes. These foundational skills will prepare the older toddlers for their eminent journey to the transitional preschool classes. Many families report that their toddlers are eager to share their new knowledge with the whole family.

The coming months are shaping up to be very interesting and exciting for all of our classes. We wish to thank everyone for the continued support and feedback you provide to us regarding our program. We take great pride in caring for your children and appreciate all of the kind words and encouragement. As always please let us know if you have any questions, comments or concerns – new jokes and fun stories. Our phone line is always open, (510)232-3121. Take care and have a wonderful spring!

Best Regards,

Moilan Manning
Executive Director

Mark Harrington
Administrative Manager

Winter 2012-2013

Happy New Year's to all of our Pride and Joy families and children! We are excited to start out fresh in 2013. We will continue to update our website with many pictures of all the wonderful things your children have done over the past 12 months and into the New Year. We would like to extend a warm welcome to the new families and children joining our preschool at the turn of this year. These children have already made several new friends here at Pride and Joy and are quickly becoming part of the family. We also would like to thank all of the families who sent cards and season’s greetings to our school and teachers over the holiday. Your thoughts always mean the world to us.

Through the end of 2012 there were many fun and exciting activities that your children participated in. The preschool classes created many wonderful seasonal art projects with a host of mediums. Some notable projects include Thanksgiving turkeys, December holiday presents and ornaments, and pumpkin carving. The children explored the various textures and techniques needed to create the projects. The preschoolers took particular joy in the carving of the pumpkins, which they nurtured and grew in their garden. It was interesting to hear the predictions that the younger preschools made with what they would find in their pumpkins. Some expected the traditional seeds and pulp others expected water and everyone hoped for candy. You can see some of the fun projects being created here.

October also was a month full of ghosts, goblins, witches and a host of television and movie characters. All of the preschool and infant and toddler children enjoyed a day of role playing on Halloween. Despite the inclement weather spirits were high and the children really enjoyed showing off their stuff. Midday dancing to the tune of monster mash and other holiday favorites was a big hit, and the children also really enjoyed the indoor parade as they marched through the school together. You can see some of the activities and costumes here.

As the seasons change so do the experiences nature provide. Last year was marked with significant rainfall towards the close of the year. The children were fascinated to see how much water had fallen from the sky. We set up our winter rain gauge to collect the rainfall and give the children a chance to predict and see how much rain really did fall. The children enjoyed using rulers and measuring tapes to determine how much rain had fallen and some were excited to see just how much all those days of gloomy and wet weather added up to. As of the 14th of December we had collected over 9 inches of rain in our gauge. Check out our young meteorologists in action.

Our wonderful toddlers have also done many of their own explorations over the past few months. The exploration of language and social situations has been a delight to watch. What once were young, quiet children now are full of laughter and impressive language to describe what they see and the world around them. The toddlers also have been doing a lot of experimentation with art and sensorial activities. They really have enjoyed creating finger and hand paintings for the holidays. Here are some pics of our wonderful Toddlers.

We always welcome visits by the El Cerrito Fire Department. The children are always very impressed by the Firemen's uniforms and equipment - and their Firetruck of course! See our most recent visit here.

Finally our beautiful babies - we are pleased to report these wonderful little ones are growing stronger, more aware and more cute by the day. We suspect that it won’t be too much longer before our youngest start to crawl and one of our little ones starts to walk which will soon turn into a joyful run.

We hope that everyone has a great start to their new year, as always if you have any questions, concerns or new stories to share please give us a call, (510) 232-3121. We look forward to catching up with everyone soon!

Best Regards,

Moilan Manning
Executive Director

Mark Harrington
Administrative Manager

Fall 2012

Dear Pride and Joy Families,

There is a crispness in the air, the leaves are turning colors and falling from the trees and the days are growing shorter and shorter… welcome to Fall!

As we venture into the start of this new season we want to share some of the fun times we had this past summer with your wonderful children. The months of July and August our preschoolers spent some time thinking of all things related to water. They spent time deciding which of their favorite toys and objects would float or sink if placed in water. Many children were surprised to learn that the heavy wooden blocks they play with everyday would not sink but float if placed into water. They were also amazed to learn that whether an object is big or small, if they are made from the same material they will both sink or float together.

The children also explored art with a watery twist. After learning that water and ice are made of the same material, what more fitting medium to make art with but ice. The preschool children tried a new way of painting, painting with ice. It was very interesting to observe as each child learned how to work with these chilly art supplies. Some of the comments we heard from the children include “I have to make my ice melt to make the colors!” and “Oh! I can make lines and drips with the ice!” Each child seemed to enjoy the novelty of painting with ice. There were also several under the sea related art projects your children created. They include the creation of sea creatures as well as their own aquariums. The older preschool children also created beach dioramas. Some of the process and art work your children made can be seen here.

“Space, the final frontier…” September in the preschool classes were spent talking about space. There were many things about space that the children learned about. They learned about planets and stars, people who have been to outer space, as well as ways humans get to outer space. Happy children could be heard singing throughout the day some of the space and planet songs they were learning. They also learned about the “good old days” when humans first walked on the moon and when Pluto was still a major planet (poor Pluto). There were also two different activities that involved vehicles of space, one activity was planned the other was a wonderful surprise. For the first activity the children practiced and practiced their backwards counting from 10 to help us launch our homemade rocket into “orbit.” Most of the children had low expectation of this rocket which they quickly identified as a plastic soda bottle thinking it would only fly a few feet in the air. Much to their surprise when the rocket finally blasted off it exceeded their expectations and flew over 150 feet into the sky. Towards the end of the month the space shuttle Endeavor flew directly over our school giving the children an up close and personal view of a real spaceship! Have a look at many of the activities your children experienced during our space exploration month here.

The summer months brought more than just sunshine and warm weather it also marked the arrival of several new Pride and Joy babies and new brothers and sisters. A big congratulations to all of the families who have had new additions these past few months. We would also like to thank everyone for sharing pictures and stories with us of their new little ones. We have also had the blessing of having a few of these new little ones join us here at Pride and Joy. Have a peek at these precious beautiful babies.

The toddler groups also had a blast this summer. There were lots of fun in the sun activities, wonderful story times and sensorial activities to keep them busy. All of our toddlers have been doing wonderfully navigating the complex world of social interactions. It is very interesting to see how inquisitive these children are and how they find the words to ask about the world around them and communicate with one another. Here are a few pictures the toddlers enjoying themselves over the summer.

There are a few holidays approaching in the coming months please mark your calendars with the following dates: Monday October 8th – Columbus Day Monday November 12th – Staff Collaboration Day (Veterans’ Day) Thursday and Friday November 22nd and 23rd – Thanksgiving

Pride and Joy will be closed on these days. Please make a special note of our staff collaboration day, originally this day was scheduled in error and the date has changed. So if you had marked your calendar with this closure already, please double check that you have the correct day. We apologize for this mistake and any inconvenience it may have caused.

We would like to thank all of our families for their continued support and sharing of ideas. As always if you have any interesting ideas, questions, comments, or concerns we would love to hear them. Please feel free to share with us, our phone number is (510)232-3121. We would like to wish everyone a safe and happy fall season!

Spring 2012

Dear Pride and Joy Families,

Happy April to you! The sun is shining, the birds are chirping… it’s finally starting to look like spring! The last of the winter months have been very delightful here at Pride and Joy Preschool. We would like to take some time and share some of the experiences your children have had so far this year.

Many of you will agree that this year has been very interesting in terms of weather. We were blessed with a very mild and dry start to the year. Your children took this opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and do many events and activities generally saved for the summer months. The children enjoyed the rare opportunity to have water play in February! All good things have to come to an end, but as the rain finally arrived the preschoolers capitalized on the change to spend a week talking about and tracking the weather. Each day your preschoolers had an opportunity to share their wet experiences and learn about different types of weather and things they should do to prepare for changing weather. The large amount of rain we received also gave us a rare opportunity to have a rain measuring and tracking activity. In our first days of rain capture the children were shocked to find several inches of rain had collected in our hydrometer. By the end of the storm some 11 inches of rain found its way into our beaker. Your children enjoyed watching, measuring and predicting how much rain was collected. You can see some of the measurements and activities using this natural resource here.

Every year with the arrival of spring, flowers start to bloom, bees start to buzz and your children roll up their sleeves and get dirty! This year’s official Pride and Joy Preschool garden has been planted. With the suggestions of your children, this year’s crop will include delicious sweet peas and spooky pumpkins. Your children helped sow the seeds for these crops in the month of March. The students informed us that there are few key ingredients to a successful garden, they include: “water, dirty dirt, worms, butterflies and sunshine.” Along with the planting of the garden several critters stopped by the preschool for a visit. Your children helped us find and examine several salamanders including the long skinny California Slender Salamander and the interesting slimy and spotted Arboreal Salamander. Salamanders were not the only friends sliding in for a visit; we also had several visitors arrive by air. A few butterflies and dragonflies stopped by to allow the children to see them. You can see the pictures of your children’s wild friends here.

One thing most of our children have in common, other than being adorable, is a love of music. Hardly a moment passes without someone singing a song, dancing or otherwise being engaged in music. This natural love of music is universal in our school. The past months our children spent time listening to, exploring, and playing musical instruments. Each child had a chance to share what kinds of instruments they have at home, ones that sound interesting to them and had a chance to play some of ours here at Pride and Joy. It was quite amazing to hear the diversity of experiences your children have had with music. It is particularly interesting to hear the variety of music your little ones are interested in. We have heard everything from the latest Adele song, to good classic Journey. We played sound samples of a variety of instruments, some very common – like a piano, and some not so common, like a bassoon. Your children enjoyed hearing sounds they have heard before and interesting new sounds, too. We conclude the lessons with some practice and play time with our own instruments. They even had a chance to practice their rock star skills. Some of the fun was captured on camera, you can check out the pictures here. Please continue to keep us up-to-date as your child’s tastes in music evolve.

Finally over the past few months we have had a long-term project that the older group 4 preschool children have been working on. A project entitled All About Me. It has been a delight to get to know each of your special little ones, their likes, interests and tastes.

Over the next few weeks and months, some of our older friends will begin their journey to Kindergarten and beyond, please join us in wishing them a fond farewell. We hope all of our graduating students enjoy their transition to “big kid school.” They will be greatly missed, so be sure to keep in touch and visit!

We have several interesting and fun events in store for the coming months. We do wish to remind you of the upcoming holidays. Please mark your calendar with the following dates:

May 28th – Memorial Day
June 8th – Parent and Staff Meeting Day
June 21st and 22nd – Summer recess

As our Parent and Staff meeting day approaches, please do keep an eye out for more information regarding meeting times and parking information and alternate plans in case of inclement weather. For those families that are new, our parent and staff meeting day is a time where we are closed for normal operation but invite all the parents to come by for a visit. Get to know your children’s current and future teachers and visit with old friends and past teachers. It is also an excellent time to get to know some of our families who you may have yet to connect with. We are all excited that this event is on the horizon and will keep you posted as plans are finalized.

We hope that everyone has had a pleasant and delightful winter and we wish you all a fantastic spring. If you have any questions or comments, we would love to hear them. Please give us a call, send us an email or schedule a time to stop by and visit.

Check out these activities your children had over the last few months:

Special project with Teacher Erika - Click here
Indoor Fun Activities with Teachers Katherine and Erika - Click here
All About Money with Mark – Click here
Best Friends and Good Buddies – Click here
Proud Parents of Taylor – Click here
Young Artists of Pride and Joy – Click here
Meditation – Click here
Adorable Infants and Toddlers - Click here
More Adorable Kids – Click here

February 2012

Dear Pride and Joy Families,

Happy February!

Just as fast as this year has commenced, we are already tearing back pages of the calendar and burning through the year! February, while the shortest month, tends to be one of the most interesting and fun months for the children. During the month of February many preparations are made around the school for many of the long term projects that will come later on in the year. Each February and March the children plant seeds in our garden beds and nurture the seeds to life. This year we are planning to plant several varieties of vegetables and fruits including corn and pumpkins. Keep checking back to see what progress your children’s gardens make over the coming months.

As a reminder to parents; Monday February 20th is President’s Day. Pride and Joy will be closed in observation.

This past month there were many activities your children enjoyed. I think everyone enjoyed the extra lease on the summertime weather, and all of the outdoor activities that go along with such beautiful weather. Many of our Group 4 preschool children have been honing their soccer and football skills. The Group 3 children have been learning about bicycle safety and various elements of nature. The infant and toddlers too have taken advantage of the wonderful weather, many of our youngest walkers are beginning to learn how to use their bodies to run about.

As you may have heard, your children had a visit from the Tooth Fairy. Each and every one of the children were enchanted by the visit. The Tooth Fairy and her helper talked with all of the children about healthy foods for the body and the teeth as well as foods that should be saved for special times. The duo wrapped up their presentation by having the children help brush and floss the teeth of the puppets they brought. You can see some pictures of the presentation here.

This month, there are many activities planned for the children to explore music and movement, natural history and dinosaurs as well as math, science, language and literature and gross motor development. We are excited looking forward to what this month will hold. We wish everyone a safe and happy February. As always we would love to hear from you; please sends us a message, gives us a call or drop by to chat!

January 2012

Happy New Years to all of our Pride and Joy families and children! We are thrilled to welcome everyone back and into 2012. We are anxious to hear all of the wonderful experiences your children had during their time off and with their travels over winter break. All of us here at Pride and Joy would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to all of the families who sent cards and well wishes to our school and teachers over the holiday season. Your kind thoughts mean a lot to us!

January is always a busy month here at Pride and Joy. The classes are bustling with stories and laughter as the children return to their normal routines. January also marks the “homestretch” for some students, as Kindergarten lurks on the horizon. This month also signifies new beginnings, as the calendars change each child gears up for the next hurtle they are waiting to cross. Whether it be learning to read or walk, potty training or speaking a first word, each of your children are constantly growing, evolving and maturing. We have many activities planned to help each child along on their personal road of development. The infant and toddler classes will be working on refining their fine and gross motor skills, learning language through song and social play, and enjoying their friends through laughter and play.

The Preschool classes will start the year anew with many projects and activities to welcome the students back from break and gear them up for a fun filled year for learning. The preschool children have expressed and shown great interest in the natural world around them. With all of the unseasonably nice weather, the preschool classes will take an opportunity to explore the outside world. Each class will be collecting and working with natural materials to create masterful art pieces, performing science experiments and developing a greater understanding of numbers and math.

As a reminder spring and winter in California typically are cold and wet, with this in mind we would like to encourage families to be sure that there is enough spare and warm clothing for their children here at school. Outdoor activities and gross motor development are an important part of your child’s program here at Pride and Joy. Keeping them warm and comfortable will make their time outdoors a rewarding and enjoyable experience for all. As with all of your child’s personal belongings, please be sure to label them clearly with a permanent marker.

We hope everyone has a positive start to their new year, as always we are here for you to help with your concerns, questions or just to have a chat. Please feel free to call us any time. We would love to hear from you!

December 2011

Dear Parents:

Seasons greetings!

We want to first say thank you to all of the families and friends who have continued to support us here at Pride and Joy Preschool. It has been an honor to care for and teach your wonderful children this year. 2011 has been a wonderful year for all of our children; each of your children have grown a little taller, learned a few new words and continued to blossom each day. We are proud to be a part of each and every one of your amazing children's development.

As a reminder, Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed starting December 19, 2011 and will remained closed through the New Year. We will re-open on January 2, 2012.

Looking back on this past year, it has been a very enjoyable experience. Each of your children have had a very productive and fun year. As with every year, many of our students not only get a little older they also gain a little more responsibility as they become big brothers and big sisters. We would like to welcome all of these new additions and wish them all the best during the holiday season. There were many new things that we learned together and some activities and projects which were of particular joy to the students. Some of our favorite activities this year can be seen here.

This month all of our preschool classes will be winding down for the year, reflecting on all of the fun events and games that took place and revisiting some of our favorite songs, activities and projects. We will also be recognizing all of the holidays that take place during the winter months. With students from all around the world, naturally there are many different celebrations that take place in December and through the early new year. Whether it be; Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Years or just celebrating family, December becomes a busy month of celebration. In honor of these celebrations the children will be learning a little bit about each of them through art, literature, song and dance, and all of the other areas of learning.

Many families have reported back that they will be traveling over the holiday season. We hope that everyone has a wonderful time while they travel all over the world. We hope that everyone takes lots of pictures to share as they have a good time with their families and friends and explore new and interesting places.

From all of us here at Pride and Joy Preschool, we want to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season. We look forward to celebrating the New Year with you next year!

November 2011

Greetings Pride and Joy Families,

Can you believe it is November already? Our favorite part of November is reuniting with relatives and friends while enjoying all of the wonderful foods that come with the season. Roasted turkey, stuffing, gravy and pumpkin pie, Yum!

Just a reminder, daylight savings time ends on November 6th. In the spring many find it hard to adjust to the time change, but almost everyone loves getting an extra hour of sleep in the fall! Also, we have three days for the month of November in which Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed. Please mark your calendar with the following dates:

Friday November 11 – Staff Collaboration day
Thursday and Friday November 24 & 25 – Thanksgiving Break

The Preschoolers have participated in many fun activities. The younger preschool students took the month to learn about their 5 senses. While exploring their senses they had many interesting things to say about how they perceived their senses of smell, sight, touch, taste and hearing. The older preschool children also had a great time this past month learning about manners and having fun October themed activities. You can see some of the things they did this past month by Clicking here.

One ghostly holiday that comes up each October is Halloween. The princesses and superheroes were out in full force. We even had many of our young students show up to school in their cute costumes. Check out our kids in action from this special day by Clicking here.

Our infants and toddlers also had a very pleasant October. It seems everyday these little ones are a little taller and a little more talkative. Our infants have all enjoyed their infant concerts. It is wonderful to see them start to mimic the older preschoolers during these finger play and song activities. Here is a quick look at our recent Halloween infant concert and these adorable little ones, Click here.

There are only a few more weeks left for 2011. We hope everyone enjoys the rest of 2011 before we begin 2012. If you have any questions, comments or concerns please give us a call. We wish everyone a safe and happy November.

August 2011

Happy August! In the month of August we have a day we would like for you to mark on your calendar. On Friday August, 26th, Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed for a staff meeting. Our staff will have a full day training this day, during which they will have time to refresh, reflect and relate with each other about all of ways to keep all of your children safe, healthy, happy and productive. Our school will re-open the following Monday for our normal schedule.

August also signifies the last full month of summer. Labor Day symbolically marks the end of summer with the official end falling on the calendar later in September. Click here to see some of our favorite summer activities which your children enjoyed. August is also National Immunization Awareness Month. It is a good time to ensure your children and older relatives are current on all immunizations. Please keep in mind as your child’s immunizations are updated we are required to keep a current copy of their immunization card in their file at school. Please let us know if your child has received any immunizations over the past 12 months. If you are unsure if we have a current copy, feel free to call the office we would be happy to verify for you.

Our preschool classes are learning more this month about hygiene and reasons why it is so important. In the summer illnesses tend to be few and far between, so many forget why frequent washing of hands and good health and hygiene practices are important. We will be working with all of the preschool children to reinforce these good habits and teach them more ways to be healthy and happy. This month will be a good time at home to establish and reinforce all of the good habits and cleaning practices your children can do to ensure the health of the home. Children make good helpers, giving them a few tasks, such as wiping the dinner table or picking up dirty clothing can help them learn to take responsibility for their own health and cleanliness.

Everyone enjoys the sunshine, it feels great to get out and live, work and play in the sun. Animals and insects also enjoy and need the sunshine to complete their daily tasks. The children enjoy watching the butterflies and lady bugs flutter about their day visiting our gardens and enjoying the summer. Our school also hosts several plants which are beneficial to honey bees. We must stress that caution be taken and children prohibited from playing in the front gardens especially around the lavender plants. Disturbing the bees and their natural rhythms can result in a painful and itchy interaction. Keeping out of the planting beds helps keep bees and children alike healthy and happy, it also prevents damage to the plants and irrigation system.

We hope that everyone has a fun and successful August, we look forward to a wonderful month here at Pride and Joy. If you have any questions or comments please give us a call, or send us an email, we would love to hear from you!

July 2011

Hello Pride and Joy Families,

Welcome to summer! This month marks our country’s birthday. As a reminder Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed July 4th in observance of Independence Day. We wish everyone a safe and happy holiday.

Thanks to all our families and friends who were able to make it out to our annual parent/staff connection day. Everyone had a blast and the event was a huge success. It was great to see all of the familiar faces as well as all of our new families and their relatives. To check out pictures of our event click here. For those whom we missed, we hope to see you at our next event!

As summer is always warm and sunny, we would like to remind parents to keep your child stocked up on sunscreen to protect your child from having sunburn. One other important article is a swimsuit. As the weather grows warmer, we plan to spend more time in outdoors with our children. We are ready to take on the bright sunshine and we look forward to splashing in the nice cool water and having fun, fun, fun!

July not only signifies the first full month of summer, it also marks the beginning of our kindergarten commencements. We wish to THANK each and every family who has called Pride and Joy home. We are very proud of the progress each graduate has made. It has been a great honor to be a part of your child’s life and it is extremely satisfying for us to watch them grow into amazingly well adjusted and kindergarten-ready students. Without a doubt our graduates will be a delight to their new classrooms and we are confidant they will continue to excel in their future endeavors.

Finally, we would like to congratulate some of our parents for their new addition to their families. We want to welcome all of these beautiful babies into this wonderful world and in particular to the world of Pride and Joy Preschool. All of these babies have loving older siblings that once were in our infant program. Click here to see our awesome babies and their siblings. As always, we strive to continue to offer our wonderful babies a warm, safe and enriching infant program that will make us all proud.

Once again, if you have any questions, comments, concerns or happy news to share, please do not hesitate to give us a call at (510) 232-3121 or simply drop us a line via email.

May 2011

Hello Pride and Joy Families,

Happy May to you! For some, this time of the year is their favorite; the weather is warm, flowers are blooming and birds are singing. For others it can be a sniffly, sneezy time of year as seasonal allergies stage their come back. If your child is subject to springtime allergies please keep in mind they will be in need of clean tissues. Please check with your child’s teacher to ensure there are enough materials to keep them happy and healthy.

As a reminder Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed for one day this month. Please mark your calendar with the following day: Monday May 30th, 2011 in observance of Memorial Day.

Not only is May the prelude to the summer, it is also the month that we take one special day and dedicate to all of the Mothers, Grandmothers, motherly figures and important women in our lives. Be sure to send our sincerest thoughts and wishes to all of these amazing individuals. All of their warm love, support, and guidance truly shows in your children and all of the great things they do.

May 12th marks bike to work day. We encourage all families who have a means to participate in this event to join us in support of earth friendly and alternate forms of transportation. We already have several families who come day-in and day-out by bicycle, join them on Thursday the 12th by coming to school and work by bike! There will be an energizing station provided by the City of El Cerrito along the Ohlone greenway at El Cerrito Plaza and there will also be coffee and treats and a wealth of information for bike to work day participants. We will also have space set up on both sides of our facility to stash away any children’s bikes and ride-along chariots.

Pride and Joy Preschool is proud to introduce our new Arts and Crafts teacher, David. David is co-author of a book titled “LooLeDo,” which is full of wonderful arts and crafts projects created from everyday items. David has been working with our preschool children to create and express themselves through art. The preschool children will learn how to use recycled items as well as simple things that can be found around the house and turn them into beautiful works of art. You can see some of the projects that David has been doing with your children by clicking here.

Our Pre-K and Transition classes had a blast this past month learning about the egg. They learned everything from where eggs come from to how to cook and eat them. They also had a chance to bring some dyed eggs home that they worked on for their art projects. Be sure to continue the egg conversation with your children at home especially when eating eggs or when you find a bird’s nest containing little eggs. Click here to see pictures of this activity.

In this month, our Pre-k (Group 4) children will continue their exploration of animals. They will learn about larger animals from the water, land and sky. They will find out the differences these animals have that allow them to live such different places.

Transition (Group 3) kids will work on the fascinating world of bugs. They will be learning all about how bugs live and their important effects on the world around us. Our children will be able to watch bugs interact with the flowers and the veggie crops they planted, while watching our garden grow and thrive.

Our toddlers (Group 2) will continue their exploration of their 5 senses. They will practice putting words to what they taste, hear, smell, feel and see. Our toddlers will also practice following directions. Quiz your toddler by asking him or her to follow along while you instruct them to touch the parts of their face. Each time they are able to follow along with you, don’t forget to give them a high-five or praise for doing such a good job!

All of us here at Pride and Joy would like to wish everyone a safe and happy month and all the months ahead. As always our phone line and email are open, we welcome and encourage questions, comments or pleasant conversation!

April 2011

Dear Pride and Joy Families,

Happy April...The rain clouds have moved away and now the sun is shining! We are all very happy here to finally dry out and get a chance to run outside and play!

Please mark your calendars with the following school closure: April 22, 2011 - Good Friday

As the weather turns nice, families begin to dig out and dust off old outdoor toys. Many popular toys include bicycles, scooters and roller skates. It is important to remember that California State Law requires all children under the age of 18 to wear a helmet while riding a bicycle, skateboard, scooter or roller skates. For families on outings in El Cerrito, please keep in mind El Cerrito Law REQUIRES all riders of any age to wear a helmet, not just children under 18 years old. To ensure the effectiveness of your helmets it is recommended that helmets are inspected regularly for cracks or damage. Some manufactures recommend replacement of helmets after 3-5 years, regardless of damage. Remember wearing helmets not only satisfies the law they also keep your children safe from preventable injuries!

Gardening is also a very popular springtime family activity. Here are a few tips to make your gardening adventures a positive and productive experience for children and adults alike.

1. Get Dirty! Let's face it; playing in the dirt is fun. When you mix kids and dirt together it will get messy!
2. Find the Creepy Crawlies. Children love bugs, explaining the role that insects play in the garden is a very fun lesson for them to learn. They enjoy watching worms, ladybugs and bees fly about the garden.
3. Keep Children Involved! Children enjoy being a part of the show, they aren't always neat and tidy but have a great time watering their plants and pulling weeds.
4. Is it Ready Yet? Some children are eager to watch their plants grow and eat the results of their hard work. When deciding on what to plant, choose a few plants that will provide produce quickly to keep children interested.

In a few short months your children will be able to enjoy fresh and organic produce they grew themselves! Last year our children had a wonderful time growing their own veggies in our garden. Check out the pictures from last year's garden here: How Does Your Garden Grow?

The preschool classes are very excited about starting their own gardens this month. You will soon see a transformation as your children sow seeds in our gardens and help nurture their plants to life. The older preschool children are learning about the planet and how to respect and treat our planet well. They have been talking about recycling, transportation options and how to improve the world around them. Soon your children will come home and teach their family how to go green. The younger preschool class is also exploring the changing world around them. Many activities are on tap to help them explore nature and watch the world come to life this spring.

The Toddler classes will also be enjoying the fresh springtime air. All of the toddlers are eager to enjoy and explore the outside world. As the sweet smell of jasmine fills the air the toddlers will continue exercising their gross motor skills as they run about in the sunshine. The toddler class will also focus on self-help skills and sharing this month. As language develops it is inevitable that the young children will get a case of the "mines." We will focus on helping them use their words as well as allowing their friends to enjoy their toys and prized possessions together. The toddlers will also be learning about the sense of smell and exploring the fragrant springtime air. Our infants will also continue to grow and learn new things every day. It is amazing how fast these little ones grow!

This month is shaping up to be fantastic. We wish that everyone have a safe and healthy April. As always our phone line is open, and we would love to hear from you!

March 2011

Hello Pride and Joy Families!

Happy March! Springtime is quickly approaching here at Pride and Joy. We are busily preparing for all of the wonderful activities that come with the change of the season. This winter season came very quickly and is just as quick to turn into spring. Springtime can provide a host of weather for the children to prepare for. Some days it may be cold and wet while others may be very warm and sunny. It is important to remember to send a jacket or sweater with your child to ensure there is something warm for them to wear in case the weather is unpredictable.

Please mark your calendar with the following date, March 25, 2011 - Pride and Joy Preschool will be closed for our spring Staff Collaboration day. If your family does not have a copy of our 2011 holiday schedule, this information can be found on our website under the news and events section to the left side of the webpage.

The Group 4 preschoolers will explore the fascinating world of Dinosaurs this month. There are many activities planned to help sharpen their language, math and science skills while learning more about these creatures from the past. So many children are intrigued by these ancient animals. After the children finish exploring dinosaurs, the older children will also begin their Spring activities, including sowing their own seeds in the garden and helping them come to life.

Our preschoolers have quite an exciting month planned ahead. Group 3 – Transition children will explore Spring and all of the amazing things that happen in nature during this very special time of the year. There are many art and science project that will help the children explore and appreciate the natural world around them. The group 3 children will be planting a garden this month. The children will help us nurture the seeds into sprouts and the sprouts into large healthy plants.

The toddler group sure does seem to grow up fast. Our toddlers all have been making great strides in language development and social skills. This month our toddlers will continue to make advancements in these areas. They will also learn new words and songs, strengthen their gross and refine their fine motor skills.

Our beautiful babies have been growing very fast as well. Our youngest children are starting to get around and explore the world around them. As our babies begin to crawl, it is only a matter of time until they are walking and running happily about. Our babies will also continue to enjoy the infant concert where their siblings and older peers help them develop language through song and finger play.

We wish everyone a wonderful March, as always if you have any questions and concerns or would just like to chat, feel free to give us a call!