A lot of people ask us after moving here if preschool is mandatory in Edmonton. In Edmonton, preschool is not mandatory, and parents can defer enrolment for one year.
As for when children should go, children can enter preschool between the ages of 2 years and 8 months to 4 years and 8 months. However, it can still depend on the district’s age cut-off.
At any rate, if you want to find a good preschool for your child in Edmonton, we’re here to help. We’ve created this guide to the best preschools in the area for you!
1. Malmo Pre-Kindergarten
|Address||4716 – 115 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T6H 3N8|
|Operating Hours||• Tuesday and Thursday 9 AM - 11:15 AM (3-year-old Program) |
• Monday, Wednesday, Friday 9 AM - 11:15 AM (4-year-old Program)
• Monday, Wednesday, Friday 1 PM - 3:15 PM (3 -and-4-year-old Combined Program )
|Programs and Program Fees||• 3 Year Old Program - $130 per month |
• 4 Year Old Program - $165 per month
• 3 and 4 Year Old Combined Program - $165 per month
Malmo Preschool is a non-profit preschool that accepts children ages 3 to 5 years old. They promote learning through play.
The preschool offers individualized instruction and learning centers that are specifically designed to challenge a child’s individual needs and stages of development.
Moreover, they also have a structured playtime which includes music time, circle time, or gym time.
We like that they encourage learning outside the four corners of the classroom. You see, the preschool enriches large motor skills by giving out activities in the school gymnasium, play house, and outdoor park.
What’s more, they also conduct special activities to further stimulate and challenge the kids. These activities include field trips or programs that tackle music, art media, food, science, and community experiences.
Malmo Pre-Kindergarten’s class size is not specified, but each class is assigned a teacher, teacher assistant, and parent helpers.
Note that registrations are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. There’s a non-refundable $60 registration fee to secure a spot for enrolment.
Besides that, you also have to pay an administration fee worth $100, a supplies fee worth $50, and a cleaning fee worth $50.
Since it’s a non-profit parent cooperative, the participation of the parents is needed to properly maintain and operate the school.
Parents are assigned manageable tasks in the preschool’s operations, maintenance, and administrative aspects to keep the costs down.
2. Little Aspen Playschool
|Address||12015 39a Ave NW, Edmonton, AB T6J 6P7, Canada|
|Operating Hours||Monday - Friday 8:45 AM - 3:45 PM|
|Programs and Program Fees||• 3 Year Old Program - $72 to $349 per month |
• 4 Year Old Program - $72 to $349 per month
• 3 and 4 Year Old Split Program - $72 to $349 per month
Little Aspen Playschool is a non-profit preschool that offers play-based programs. It’s a community preschool that is over 25 years old.
They only accommodate a maximum of 15 kids per class.
Moreover, each class has one teacher and one full-time assistant, which is ideal for ensuring each child is given the attention they need.
They have three-hour classes with daily outside activities.
To summarize the kids’ schedule, they’ll start with the introduction for the day, followed by guided stations and free play. Afterward, they’ll have a clean-up and washroom time, followed by snacks and quiet social time.
Next, the kids will have a book time or lesson. Outdoor time is done in the last 30 minutes of class.
It’s when the class can go out to run, hop, jump, climb, and explore.
Nonetheless, if you don’t want your kid to go outside, you can pick them up around 11:15 PM (for the morning class) or 3:15 PM (for the afternoon class).
The specific daily activities are kept in the teacher’s plan book and are available upon request if you want to view them.
Every two weeks, they also introduce a new theme in the classroom. Various activities, including crafts, playtime, and story time, are integrated into the current theme.
Compared to parent-cooperative preschools, this preschool has no obligatory fundraising and no duty days. However, parents can still volunteer for the job board and optional fundraiser.
The additional funds from these events are used to buy new books and items for the classroom as well as increase the number of field trips for the class.
Besides that, if you qualify for the childcare subsidy, the program fees can be further reduced.
|Number of Days||Tuition with Grant|
|1 day per week||$25 per month|
|2 days per week||$65 per month|
|3 days per week||$132 per month|
|4 days per week||$203 per month|
|5 days per week||$273 per month|
3. The West End and Highlands Montessori School
|Address||15120 104 Ave NW, Edmonton, AB T5P 0R5, Canada|
|Operating Hours||• Monday - Sunday (Half Day Class) 9 AM - 11:30 AM / 1:30 PM - 3:30 PM |
• Monday - Sunday (Full Day Class) 8 AM - 5 PM
|Programs and Program Fees||• Montessori Program (Half Day) - $590 per month |
• Montessori Program (Full Day) - $1,187
• Montessori After-School Program - $1,100 per month
The West End and Highlands Montessori have been in the industry for over four decades. They use Montessori methods and programs and practice individualized instructions.
The Montessori approach is advised to be a 3-year-old cycle starting at 2 or 3 years old.
Teaching beyond the classroom setting is one of their goals, so they conduct activities that let the kids explore the community.
You see, the preschool’s large and fine motor skills development is done both inside and outside the classroom.
These activities include field trips to farmers’ markets, local parks, local businesses, trails, libraries, and museums. Besides that, they also have trips to the fire station, city hall, and performing arts events.
We think this is an appealing way to let the kids fall in love with learning while supporting their individual opportunities to explore. Moreover, they don’t give external rewards and don’t penalize the kids.
They just let the children find discipline in what they do and give them the guidance they need.
In this preschool, students are grouped by ability and not by age. Two and six years olds are mixed in each class, but class sizes are kept low.
They believe this is a good way to improve the relationship between all the students and enhance classroom unity.
We also like that the parents are mentored on how to tackle their child’s learning challenges and learning levels.
We’d like to warn you, though, that the tuition fees in this preschool are a bit exorbitant. In addition to that, there’s a non-refundable registration fee worth $200 and annual school fees and incidental fees worth $550.
4. Gold Bar Preschool
|Address||10524 46 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T6A 1Y3|
|Operating Hours||• Monday, Wednesday, Friday 9 AM - 11:30 AM |
• Wednesday and Friday 9 AM - 11:30 AM
|Programs and Program Fees||Outdoor Focused Programs |
• 2 days per week - $115 per month
• 3 days per week - $140 per month
Gold Bar Preschool is a play-based and outdoor-focused preschool program.
It is within walking distance of Gold Bar Park and has access to two playgrounds, so learning is always tied up with having fun!
Each class with a maximum of 15 children is also exposed to roleplaying, dramatic centers, and open-art activities.
It is 100% volunteer run by parents and guardians. One adult per child registered is required to fill one volunteer position.
You can volunteer when the school has field trips or special event days.
Besides that, you can also oversee or do laundry, create individual sensory bins, shop for supplies, or be a ghost parent for roster days.
Fundraising is also critical for the preschool to cut down on expenses. Every year they conduct around three or four fundraisers.
Remember that all families are required to fundraise at least $250 per year. If you can’t meet this quota or don’t have the time to attend the fundraising, you can opt to pay the fee, which is also worth $250.
Gold Bar Preschool supports Alberta’s childcare affordability transition. This means that if you’re eligible for the grant, the program fees will be reduced by $75 per month.
5. Preschool Scholars
|Address||3323 34 St NW Unit-202, Edmonton, AB T6T 2K6, Canada|
|Operating Hours||• Tuesday and Thursday 9 AM - 11:30 AM |
• Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 9 AM - 11:30 AM
• Monday - Friday 9 AM - 11:30 AM
|Programs and Program Fees||Preschool Scholars Curriculum |
• 2 days per week - $175 per month
• 3 days per week - $286 per month
• 5 days per week - $495 per month
Preschool Scholars has Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB) and Alberta Teachers Association (ATA) certified teachers.
They feature Montessori-inspired and play-based teaching programs.
The classroom resembles a playground and has different stations set up around the room. Each station contains a lesson or activity that coincides with the biweekly educational themes.
This is a great way to create an engaging learning environment. Besides that, life experiences, social interaction, academics, and adventure are integrated into their lessons and activities.
The pupil-teacher ratio in this preschool is 10 to 1. This is ideal for ensuring that the students are given the guidance they need to easily meet the specific goals and outcomes.
They accept children ages 3 to 5 years old. However, the kids must be fully potty-trained.
The preschool offers free registration for siblings, so if you plan to enroll all your kids, you can save more.
If you want to check the school’s facilities and know more details about the school, you can schedule a tour. Parents will also receive a calendar of events each month.
Moreover, parent and teacher conferences are available upon request.
Remember that they have an open-door policy so parents and community members can actively participate in their programs. Here are the ways you contribute to the school:
- Assist field trips
- Attend preschool celebrations
- Meet other parents at social events
- Attend progress report evenings
- Read a story to the class