The 2021 Southwest Michigan Preschools Guide: Kalamazoo, Portage & Surrounding Communities

Preschool

Find Your Child’s Perfect Start to School with this List of Kalamazoo Area Preschools

Hello, Preschool!

The arrival of preschool can bring mixed emotions for both kids and parents. It’s exciting and new, but also a bit overwhelming and nerve-racking. After all, you are sending your baby off into the world.

Landing on that perfect preschool for your little one can make the transition into the school years smoother and happier. We are here to help you do just that.

Our preschool guide will give you options and help you narrow down what school fits your child and family needs best.

What Factors Should You Consider When Selecting a Preschool?

Choosing a preschool for your child can seem like such an overwhelming task. When exploring your preschool options around Kalamazoo, keep these important considerations in mind:

  • curriculum, teaching methods and learning philosophy
  • public, private or religious affiliation
  • location
  • practical issues such as drop-off and pickup, recess, hours, and after-hours options
  • parent communication structure
  • food – consider allergy management and food preferences
  • cost
  • staff experience and staff to student ratios
  • classroom resources and playground equipment

Hopefully these factors will get you started as you weigh your options and choose with confidence the best preschool for your family needs.

Hooray for an exciting start to your child’s educational journey!

*It is a parent’s responsibility to research a preschool’s accreditation status. Accreditation is not a legal requirement for preschools in Michigan and choosing an accredited preschool is a parent preference.

Greater Kalamazoo Area Preschools Guide

This information is updated for the 2021 preschool year. Ages Served indicates the child’s age (in years and months) at the beginning of the school year.

Given the COVID-19 pandemic, many locations are not offering traditional open houses this year. Contact each preschool to discuss visiting options or private tours.
*The following are sponsored listings.


Displaying 1 - 16 of 16

Milestones Child Development Center

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5, Age 6
 
Address:
8101 Moorsbridge Road
Portage, MI 49024
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About Preschool at Milestones Child Development Center

Milestones Child Development Center is locally owned and offers 4 program locations in Cascade, Caledonia, Belmont and Portage.

Open since 2005, Milestones enriches each child’s life with intentional educational techniques, authentic experiences all while providing a nurturing and safe environment.

Milestones' state-of-the-art facilities offer secure buildings, warm interiors and expansive, natural playgrounds.

The Catholic Schools of Greater Kalamazoo

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4
 
Address:
Kalamazoo, MI
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About Preschool at The Catholic Schools of Greater Kalamazoo

The Catholic Schools of Greater Kalamazoo offer two great preschool options: St. Augustine Cathedral School, downtown, and St. Monica Catholic School, on the border between Kalamazoo and Portage, provide fully-licensed, welcoming preschool classrooms located within nurturing, Catholic faith-based elementary schools.

Children benefit from a curriculum that provides activities and skills from each developmental area – cognitive, creative, physical, spiritual, language, and social-emotional learning – making up the “whole child.”

A central component of our curriculum is the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, a hands-on program that gives each child the opportunity to grow in love, knowledge, and relationship with God.

We offer full and half days for 3 and 4-year-olds. See our website for more details, and schedule your visit today!

St. Augustine Cathedral School
600 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007
(269) 349-1945

St. Monica Catholic School
530 W Kilgore Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49008
(269) 345-2444

Kalamazoo Country Day School

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
4221 East Milham Road
Portage, MI 49002
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About Preschool at Kalamazoo Country Day School

Kalamazoo Country Day School is the only private, independent, non-profit school in Southwest Michigan. It provides progressive, individualized instruction that emphasizes problem-solving, communication and high-level thinking.

For 40 years, the KCDS Preschool has provided guided, hands-on activities that foster curiosity, build a lifelong love for learning, and create meaningful and developmentally appropriate bridges to academic and social-emotional growth.

Each day at KCDS holds opportunities to explore through indoor and outdoor play that integrate math, literacy, social studies and science.

Small class sizes, academic differentiation and flexible themed units allow even the youngest of learners to guide their own education.

Comstock Early Learning Academy

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
6171 East MN Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49048
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About Preschool at Comstock Early Learning Academy

Comstock Public Schools offers a unique preschool experience at CELA, the Comstock Early Learning Academy! CELA offers several flexible Pre-K options for three and four-year-olds.

• STEM Pre-K classroom, where we introduce your child to science, technology, engineering, and math in a fun, hands-on environment.

• In addition to tuition-based programs, our facility also offers classrooms that are a part of the Great Start Readiness Program and Head Start.

Mrs. O's Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
8025 Moorsbridge Road
Portage, MI 49024
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About Preschool at Mrs. O's Preschool

Mrs. O.’s Preschool provides a nurturing environment and high quality education for young children. With over 65 combined years of early elementary teaching experience, we believe in developmental, age-appropriate learning, where children learn at their own pace.

We offer a balanced combination of academics, play, and structure to give children a positive first school experience.

Curriculum:
• The Creative Curriculum
• Heggerty Phonemic Awareness
• The Lively Letters
• The Zones of Regulation

As career kindergarten teachers, it’s been our experience that incoming 5-year-olds are lacking in preparatory academic fundamentals and social cues. Mrs. O's directors will prepare your 3, 4, & 5-year olds with foundational values and skills they’ll use for life.

Mrs. O’s encourages learning through play in all areas of curriculum including math, science, reading, writing, and social studies during our daily center work and thematic weekly units.

Starting Point Preschool

T E S T I M O N I A L

Our experience has exceeded our expectations. They hold space for each child and their unique needs. They meet you where you are, and provide tools to grow at a comfortable pace. It has brought us peace and we are so grateful.

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 6 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
2345 North 10th Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
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About Preschool at Starting Point Preschool

A community-focused preschool that provides education in a loving, Christian environment. Where kids learn through creative play and care.

Goals:
• Spiritual- Foster a joyful, personal relationship between the children and Jesus
• Physical- Develop a good self-image through personal attention, acceptance, and affection
• Mental- Grow in the ability to observe, focus attention, develop language and math skills
• Social- Learn social skills of personal rights, respect for others, family, & coping

We work to give your child an excellent opportunity to learn and grow as they take a journey through our preschool programs.

Starting Point Preschool is pleased to announce the Coronavirus Tuition Relief program.
• All students are eligible for discounted tuition for up to 40% off regular tuition (through 9/1/2021).
• To learn more about our program, contact us today.

Open House Info

Under the current circumstances, we are not conducting open houses. Please contact us for a personal tour. Virtual tours coming soon!

Early Learning Center at the YMCA

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
1001 W Maple Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
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About Preschool at Early Learning Center at the YMCA

YMCA Early Learning Center programs strengthen families and boost youth development by offering learning readiness experiences and comprehensive child development programs.

Our programming at the Y addresses the holistic development of young children by supporting brain development, early literacy, development of healthy habits, and strong parenting skills.

Our programs are licensed by the State of Michigan and promote the physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development of your child and respond to the needs of the entire family.

Our preschool is inclusive and uses Creative Curriculum.
• This curriculum offers a hands-on learning environment that encompasses both fine and gross motor skills along with preparing the children for kindergarten.

Our programs also offer special activities including tennis lessons, swim lessons, nature walks in Kleinstuck Preserve, and monthly field trips.
• Note: field trips are not being offered during COVID precautions.

Families registering their preschooler full time (5 full days per week) for the 2021-2022 school year will receive a free family membership for the school year.
• With the YMCA membership, your family can spend quality and active time together by swimming, playing tennis, or attending family nights and parent’s nights out.
• This membership may be used at both the Portage and Maple locations.

We are a proud participant of Kalamazoo County’s KC Ready 4’s, which provides tuition assistance for qualifying families to enroll their 4-year-old in an affordable high-quality program.
• Visit www.kcready4s.org for more information about the program.

Must be 2 yrs 9mo and potty trained.

Open House Info

Private tours are offered by appointment. (269) 345-9622, extension 161

The Montessori School

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5, Age 6
 
Address:
750 Howard St
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
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About Preschool at The Montessori School

The Montessori School provides individualized preschool and kindergarten programming for children age 2 years 9 months through age 6 at our campus in downtown Kalamazoo.

- Morning (8:30 AM - 12:00 PM) or Full-Day (7:30 AM - 6:00 PM)
- 9-Month & 12-Month Programs
- 1:10 adult-to-child ratio with Montessori-certified and well-educated staff

Your child will be introduced to a wide array of concepts, learning through observation and direct interaction with beautifully crafted materials in our carefully prepared learning environment.

- Practical life lessons include baking, sewing, personal care, and cleaning tasks, all of which help to develop fine- and gross-motor skills.
- Sensorial exercises appeal to and refine the senses.
- Language is taught through immersive, tactile activities that engage the senses.
- Math is hands-on and lessons teach a concrete understanding of values and operations using materials that the child manipulates.
- Lessons in Grace and Courtesy are taught and reinforced throughout the primary program.

AppleTree & Gilden Woods Early Care and Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 6 mo, Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
AppleTree & Gilden Woods has three locations in the area (Portage, Otsego and Kalamazoo). Visit their website to find a school near you!
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About Preschool at AppleTree & Gilden Woods Early Care and Preschool

Our K-Prep Preschool Program features hands-on learning that enhances academic, social, and emotional development and prepares your child for Kindergarten success. Fitness, Technology, and Spanish enrichment classes are included in tuition.

Our mission: To provide the highest quality educational programming in a safe, nurturing, child-centered environment that earns the trust of the children and families we serve.

We provide care for children ages 6 weeks to 10 years old.

Gilden Woods – Kalamazoo
4620 Arboretum Pkwy
(269) 459-9301

Gilden Woods – Portage
1518 East Centre Ave
(269) 359-1115

AppleTree – Otsego
909 Dix Street
(269) 692-3675

Heart & Hands Christian Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
217 S. Main St.
Vicksburg, MI 49097
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About Preschool at Heart & Hands Christian Preschool

We offer three half-day programs:
• T/TH 3s Class
• M/W/F 4s Class
• M-F (5 day) 4s Class

Our 2 and 3-day classes have a parent Co-op option which offers the unique opportunity to participate in your child’s learning.

Our 5-day class participates with both KC Ready 4s and GSRP funding which means tuition is FREE to qualifying families.

Our classes are half-day which means we can create a school-like atmosphere with a daily schedule balancing free choice time and academic activities.

We use The Creative Curriculum which covers 38 objectives in Development and Learning for preschoolers. Smaller class sizes allow more individual attention for each child. We foster growth in early literacy skills, mathematics, science, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and social-emotional skills through play and exploration.

Haven's Little Treasures Christian Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
5350 N. Sprinkle Road
Kalamazoo, MI 49004 (inside Haven Church)
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About Preschool at Haven's Little Treasures Christian Preschool

Nurturing students to learn and grow in God’s truths academically, socially and spiritually.

Our 3-year-old class meets Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:00-11:30 AM.

We offer a 4-year-old class that meets Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings 8:30-11:30 AM and a 4-year-old class that meets Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons 12:15-3:15 PM.

Our learning activities include creativity and imagination, music, Bible, physical development, socialization, kindergarten readiness activities, free play and small group activities.

Christ for Kids Preschool at St. Michael Lutheran

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4
 
Address:
7211 Oakland Drive
Portage, MI 49024
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About Preschool at Christ for Kids Preschool at St. Michael Lutheran

St. Michael provides a Christian setting for children to grow spiritually, emotionally, socially, intellectually and physically.

Certified teachers lead each class using a multi-sensory approach and cross-curricular activities to help children develop in a caring environment. Preschoolers will enjoy weekly chapel, music class and time with book buddies!

All members of the community are welcome regardless of faith affiliation.

Age 3: M/W or T/TH
• 8:15 - 11:15

Age 4: W/TH/F
• 8:15 - 11:15 or 12:15 - 3:15

Age 4: M - F
• 8:15 - 11:15 or 12:15 - 3:15

Small World Christian Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4
 
Address:
2400 Winchell Avenue
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
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About Preschool at Small World Christian Preschool

Our Purpose: Help each child realize he/she is a special, unique child of God

• Promote social, emotional, physical, intellectual and spiritual development of the child in an atmosphere of Christian values through group and individual activities.
• Nurture and develop self-esteem and loving concern for others.

Activities include free and directed play, music, art, devotions, field trips, creative movement, storytime, language experiences, show & tell, social readiness, motor skills and listening skills.

Open House Info

Tues., Jan. 26, 2021, 6 - 8 pm
Tues., Feb. 23, 2021, 6 - 8 pm

Little Miracles Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
6726 Texas Dr
Kalamazoo, MI 49009-4116
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About Preschool at Little Miracles Preschool

Little Miracles is a played-based, Christ-centered preschool designed to meet both the developmental and spiritual needs of children. Our program prepares students for success in the future by fostering each of the five domains of early childhood development: speech and language, fine motor, gross motor, social and emotional, and cognitive development.

Each day offers time for spiritual growth as we read the Bible, sing, pray and discover God's creation through our thematic units.

Open House Info

Only private tours are being scheduled at this time, please contact to set up a time that will work best for you.

Kazoo School

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5, Age 6
 
Address:
1401 Cherry Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
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About Preschool at Kazoo School

Kazoo School’s preschool is child-centered- we focus on meeting the needs of the whole child. We build on the interests of the children, and work together on short- and long-term projects. We embrace multiple intelligences, and provide ample one-on-one attention for each child.

With Kleinstuck Preserve as our backyard we explore the woods often, and bring what we see, hear, touch, and smell back into the classroom.

Friends of Jesus Preschool

Ages Served:
Age 2 yrs, 9 mo, Age 3, Age 4, Age 5
 
Address:
2122 Bronson Blvd
Kalamazoo, MI 49008
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About Preschool at Friends of Jesus Preschool

Friends of Jesus Preschool, located in Zion Lutheran Church since 1978, has been providing a nurturing environment where children feel safe to learn and grow.

Our mission at Friends of Jesus Preschool is to provide Christ-centered education and care that develops spiritual, social, intellectual, physical, and emotional skills in an age-appropriate learning environment where each student is recognized as a unique child of God.

More Preschools

Adventures Learning Center | 4295 Bishop Ave, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-323-3600

AppleTree Learning Center | 909 Dix St, Otsego, MI 49078 | 269-692-3675

Bullfrogs & Butterflies Christian Preschool | 5902 S 12th St, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-488-2120

Calico Corners Preschool, Daycare & Infant Center |2323 Stadium Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49008| 269-345-6901

Catholic Schools of Greater Kalamazoo | St. Augustine Cathedral School | 600 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007 | 269-349-1945 | St. Monica Catholic School |530 W Kilgore Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-345-2444

CHUM Co-Op Preschool | 7028 Oakland Dr, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-251-2131

Child Development Centers | Seven locations in Southwest Michigan | 269-731-5775

Christ for Kids Preschool and Childcare | 7211 Oakland Dr, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-327-4889

Comstock Early Learning Academy | 6171 East MN Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49048 | 269-250-8960

Curious Kids |1010 W Milham Ave, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-323-6780

Discovery Center Kids | 4102 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49006 | 269-372-0007

Early Learning Center at the YMCA | 1001 W Maple St, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-345-9622 ext 161

Friends of Jesus Preschool of Zion Lutheran Church | 2122 Bronson Blvd, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 |269-382-2360

Gagie School | 615 Fairview Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-344-6541

Gift of Grace Montessori | 8097 Vineyard Parkway, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-365-5775

Gilden Woods Early Care and Preschool – Portage | 1518 E Centre Ave, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-359-1115

Gilden Woods Early Care and Preschool – Kalamazoo | 4620 Arboretum Pkwy, Kalamazoo, MI 49006| 269-459-9301

Haven’s Little Treasures Christian Preschool | 5350 N Sprinkle Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49004 | 269-344-5871

Heart and Hands Christian Preschool | 217 S Main St, Vicksburg, MI 49097 | 269-649-2343

Jack and Jill Co-Op Preschool | 8047 Church St, Richland, MI 49083 | 269-629-9149

JumpStart Childcare Center of Kalamazoo | 6712 Financial Pkwy, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-544-3000

Kalamazoo Christian Preschool | 3800 S 12th St, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-381-2044

Kalamazoo Country Day School | 3221 E Milham Rd, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-329-0116

Kazoo School | 1401 Cherry St, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-345-3239

KidFit Daycare | 8146 Merchant Pl, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-775-1311

Learning Village – Fairfax | 202 Fairfax, Kalamazoo, MI 49001 | 269-382-3887

Learning Village – Lake St | 215 Lake St, Kalamazoo, MI 49001 | 269-341-6070

Little Miracles Christian Learning Center, Southridge Church | 6726 Texas Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-353-2700, ext. 222

Little Steps Childcare & Preschool (Portage/Mattawan School Systems) | 7890 S 8th St, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-544-1888 or text 269-998-2887

Looking Glass Preschool & Daycare | 5527 Parkview Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-372-9766

Loy Norrix Child Care Center | 606 East Kilgore Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49001 | 269-337-0264

Milestones Child Development Center | 8101 Moorsbridge Rd, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-443-2148

Milwood Commons Preschool & Childcare| 2031 E Cork St, Kalamazoo, MI 49001| 269-344-9731

The Montessori School | 750 Howard St, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-349-3248

Mrs. O’s Preschool | 8025 Moorsbridge Rd, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-993-0066

Nature’s Way Preschool | 4442 Oakland Dr, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-343-7342

Nazarene Wee Care Center | 5625 Oakland Dr, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-327-3100

New Wonders Discovery Center | 7000 Stadium Dr, Suite 203, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-326-4926

Northglade Montessori Magnet School | 1914 Cobb Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007 | 269-337-0700

Otis Montessori Academy | 810 E Center Ave, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-327-8277

PCCN Co-Op Preschool | 3600 W Milham Rd, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-323-7855

RHCS Preschool | 700 N Fletcher, Kalamazoo, MI 49006 | 269-383-0505

St. Augustine Cathedral School | 600 W Michigan Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49007 | 269-349-1945

St. Monica Catholic School | 530 W Kilgore Rd, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-345-2444

Shamrock Montessori Preschool| 7508 Oakland Dr, Portage, MI 49024 | 269-324-4818

Small World Christian Preschool | 2400 Winchell Ave, Kalamazoo, MI 49008 | 269-344-4920

Small World Learning Center | 3616 Lake St, Kalamazoo, MI 49048 | 269-341-9800

Starting Point Preschool | 2345 N 10th St, Kalamazoo, MI 49009 | 269-459-9517

Westwood Christian Co-Op Preschool | 620 Northhampton, Kalamazoo, MI 49006 | 269-381-8691

WoodsEdge YMCA Preschool, 1501 E Milham Ave, Portage, MI 49002 | 269-250-9452

 

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