Entry Detail

    Review and Rating

    Reviewed by 2017Review
    On 16-Jun-2017
    Subject:  Review for Giocare Playschool (2's preschool)
    Comment:  My 3 year-old son attends Giocare Playschool on 15th Street and 5th Avenue, and we want to give the preschool a shout-out.While we live in central Slope, we schlep to Giocare every M-F because we love it. Our 3-year-old son has blossomed there. He was previously in a day care that was closer to our home, but we found it lacking in developmentally-appropriate, child-centered teaching. At Giocare, the teachers are guides and resources, helping our son navigate the world. They notice his interests and foster them. Most recently, he is in a fireman stage. This began because the class visited the local fire station. Our son was scared of the firefighters in their coats and hats, but okay when they took them off. Since the visit, he has been working through his fear through dramatic play as a fireman. To foster this, the teachers made sure our son has a fireman's hat and coat and a "hose" to practice putting out fires. They have sung songs about firemen and talked about keeping the kids safe. Our son's new favorite toy is his fire truck. He is conquering his fear, learning about the world, and becoming even more observant of the world around him.Other benefits of the school, include an optional summer camp, the ability to stay for after school until 6:00 p.m., daily (sometimes twice) visits to the local playgrounds,healthy snacks and lunches, daily electronic updates including photos of the kids' activities, weekly newsletters about the curriculum and kids' progress, and super available teachers and administrators.Also, the school is an approved, universal pre-K site. So, our kids can attend GIocare until they head to kindergarten at our local elementary school.We cannot wait for our 5-month old to be old enough to join the 2's class!
    Reviewed by 2017Review
    On 10-Apr-2017
    Subject:  [PSP Stay At Home Moms] summer drop off classes/preschool for 2 year old?
    Comment:  Try the drop off toddler classes at Giocare Play Spot. I think you can get a 10 class pass for mornings.(Review submitted May 2016)
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 27-Nov-2016
    Subject:  Winter Activities
    Comment:  Giocare's Playspot is an option. It's on 6th Ave and 18th St., across from the playground.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 25-Sep-2016
    Subject:  Summer Camp Survey 2016
    Comment:  Age of child: 3.5Review: Lots of field trips, water play, arts and crafts, exploring, and learning about sports. Fun activities included pony riding in prospect park, museums, pier 6, and neighborhood playgrounds.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 31-Jul-2016
    Subject:  Review submitted via the PSP Daycare/Preschool 2016 Survey
    Comment:  Program: 3s program + extended hours Age: 3-4 years Review: Our family absolutely loves Giocare, and it was the large number of glowing reviews for a relatively new program that got us to look into the school in the first place. The school is moving all its classes to a centralized commercial space next year, but for now it is a home-based program with several classes in different residential spaces, including the director Ellen's home. I think Giocare is unique because it manages to be homey, family-like, and fun but intellectually stimulating and educationally solid at the same time. We really like that the program is play-based, and the kids learn so much through this philosophy. We're confident that our daughter will be more than ready for kindergarten in the fall. They take lots of field trips to fun places and have special classes every week like art, phys ed, and Bilingual Birdies. Healthy snacks and lunches are also provided as part of the program, which is a lifesaver. Our daughter loves going to school and is sad when there are vacations. She has made a bunch of new friends, and all the kids in her class seem really sweet. The parents are all low-key as well. The teachers are caring and attentive, and Ellen is very involved in the daily operations of the school and always available when you have a question. Giocare has created a warm and nurturing environment that we're happy to be a part of.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 31-Jul-2016
    Subject:  Review submitted via the PSP Daycare/Preschool 2016 Survey
    Comment:  Program: Universal Pre-K Age: 2-3 years4-5 years Review: Wow. The director is amazing. Smart, very knowledgeable about early childhood development, caring, communicative with parents in the best way. If there is ever a concern, she speaks openly and honestly, communicating all the information she has and offers intelligent solutions. This is our third year in her play-based school. Our oldest has thrived there. Now that he is 4, we are getting a private school education for free, thanks to DeBlasio's universal Pre-K program which funds his class this year. This year our youngest joined 5 mornings/wk. We trust her completely with our children, for learning, as well as physical and emotional safety. Impressively, the pre-k class of 10 kids had at least 3 or 4 who tested into the gifted and talented program. Two of them, got 99th percentile. An astounding percentage, especially given that they don't concern themselves with test prep, just good education. The new location on 15th Street has beautiful big windows, allowing for light and observations of the street below. The downstairs space is expected to have fun features to promote development (I think a padded play area for gross motor, maybe a stage too). I can't praise it enough.PSP note, this member previously reviewed this facility in 2014.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 31-Jul-2016
    Subject:  Review submitted via the PSP Daycare/Preschool 2016 Survey
    Comment:  Program: UPK and toddler class Age: 2-3 years4-5 years Review: Giocare is a wonderful, wonderful place. My children, who are two years apart and very different, have both thrived in the care of their warm, loving and engaging teachers. Giocare takes children from 18 months and older, groups children by age, and engages them in play and exploration, letting them spend as much time as possible outdoors. The communication and collaboration with parents is excellent. Ellen works hard to make Giocare truly a community and not just a preschool. I couldn't recommend it more highly. PSP note, this member previously reviewed this facility in 2015.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 28-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Giocare feedback
    Comment:  Our daughter attended Giocare in the 3s/4s class last year. Our daughter was 3 at the time and attended 3 days per week. We were very impressed with the school and highly recommend it.The only reason that she didn't stay there this year for preK was that Giocare wasn't able to offer part-time preK (because of the limitations of the PreK for All program).
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 28-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Giocare feedback
    Comment:  My [child] was at Giocare for almost 2 years and we loved it. The teachers are great. Extremely nurturing and responsible. And that's what I needed for my daughter at such a young age. [My child] is now in another school which again we love but still miss Giocare. The fact that she will be back in Giocare for summer camp says it all.Not sure what information you are looking for but feel free to reach out to me with any questions. Good luck.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 28-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Re: Giocare feedback
    Comment:  I just have to put in another positive review for Giocare. We are very unfortunately about to leave but only because we are moving State and one of the main things we will miss about Brooklyn is Giocare. Our son has been there for the last two years and even though our daughter was too young, she's been sitting in on the odd morning drop off, enough to know and love some of the kids and teachers. I am very sorry she won't be able to attend full time. As mentioned in other reviews, Ellen is amazing and the teachers are just wonderful. They have been so great with all of life's changes (esp the potty training!) and we can't be more thankful. We've also really enjoyed getting to know many of the parents. It became a community very quickly.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 28-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Re: [PSP] Giocare preschool feedback
    Comment:  We had both our kids at Giocare until they entered pre-K at public school. Ellen Cerniglia is wonderful. She has a PhD in early childhood development from Columbia and also teaches the same at a college in the city, aside from running Giocare. I recall she used a blend of the Montessori and Waldorf methods, but she can give you a much more detailed explanation.Both our kids did get a jump start into reading, science, math, art, criticial thinking skills, and essential socialization. They even learned some Spanish, which led us to put them into a dual language Spanish program in public school. Our kids are at the top of their classes now, and I'm sure Giocare had a big part in that.We've stayed in touch with other Giocare alumni and their kids all seem to be thriving, too.In fact, my wife and I find ourselves wishing Ellen was the Superintendent for District 15 (Park Slope, Sunset Park, and Windsor Terrace), she's such a dynamo.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 02-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Preschool Search
    Comment:  Like others have posted, Giocare is a wonderful preschool and still accepting applications. My son has been attending since this fall and we are really happy there.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 02-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Preschool Search
    Comment:  I second the Giocare recommendation. it's exactly as you describe - caring, educational and playful. My 2 kids have done incredibly well there. Feel free to contact me if you need more info.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 02-Jun-2016
    Subject:  Preschool Search
    Comment:  Try Giocare playschool in the Southslope - we had a wonderful time!
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 20-Feb-2016
    Subject:  ISO 2 or 3 day summer camp program for 5's
    Comment:  You should check out Giocare in the South Slope.
    Reviewed by 2016Review
    On 15-Jan-2016
    Subject:  Review submitted via Daycare Survey
    Comment:  My two-year-old attends the Giocare toddler class and my older child is now in UPK at Giocare after going through the toddler and preschool classes. We have had only very positive experiences with both children throughout our time there. Ellen, the director, is responsive and flexible, and the teachers are all lovely. They've worked well with my family through major and minor changes as well as small struggles. My children both talk about about how much they like school. I always feel that they are safe, secure, and well cared for. They also learn a great deal but without pressure or pedantic instruction. The focus on play and the access to outdoor space is wonderful, as is the great communication (weekly newsletters, formal reports and conferences, up-to-date Shutterfly pictures). The other children also seem to be exceptionally lovely children for some reason, and the environment couldn't be more positive.
    Reviewed by
    On 14-Nov-2015
    Subject:  Re: [PSP] Anyone know any preschools in S Slope with space in January?
    Comment:   Giocare recently added another location in the South Slope (two on 18th Street between 5-6 Aves, one on 23rd, and one on 21st, I believe). They might have room. I believe they have universal Pre-K at one of them, too.We had both our kids there and they're excellent.
    Reviewed by
    On 27-Aug-2015
    Subject:  South Slope day cares?
    Comment:  Not sure what age range you're looking for, but I know more about the 2-year old and up options (they sometimes take 1.5 year olds and up, too). My 2-year old daughter is at Giocare on 20th and 5th (they have several locations), which we really like.
    Reviewed by
    On 20-Jul-2015
    Subject:  Review Submitted via 2014-2015 Daycare/Preschool Survey
    Comment:  Program: 3-4's Length of time: 5 half days Child’s Age: 3-4 yearsType of facility: Privately run daycare/preschool with multiple classes and teachersREVIEW: My child made great progress at Giocare. Her teachers did encourage her growth which is important. She was initially quite shy but blossomed and the school played an important part in this process. Ellen, the school's owner and director is fantastic and I wish that there were more of her because she is a great educator.Would you recommend? RecommendWould you send your child again? Maybe
    Reviewed by
    On 20-Jul-2015
    Subject:  Review Submitted via 2014-2015 Daycare/Preschool Survey
    Comment:  Program: 3s and 4s program Length of time: 5 mornings per week Child’s Age: 3-4 yearsType of facility: Privately run daycare/preschool with multiple classes and teachersThere is little/no parental involvement with the administration or running of the facility.REVIEW: What an amazing school! My now-4 year old has attended the school since he was 2 and we have loved it. Ellen, the director/owner/founder is a fantastic educator and communicator. She is easy going, even in the face of serious challenges. She and her staff are happy to communicate with the parents about everything they wish. She and her staff are patient with the kids and very supportive of kids' and parents' concerns. Our son is not good with transitions, and so had a hard time starting school when he was 2, but Ellen worked with him and us to make it work. He has also learned an incredible amount. He hasn't even started pre-k and he already recognizes all letters with ease and writes many of them too, has dozens of scientific investigations under his belt, and loves inquiring to learn. This past year, his teacher started a weekly newsletter that informs parents well about what has transpired, what is coming and what small things parents might be able to do to support their children's learning that week. They employ a play-based approach that has worked well for our kid. I could race endlessly about this school. Our son also attended camp there for 2 summers.Would you recommend? Highly recommendWould you send your child again? Absolutely
    Reviewed by
    On 20-Jul-2015
    Subject:  Review Submitted via 2014-2015 Daycare/Preschool Survey
    Comment:  Program: 2s program Length of time: part time Child’s Age: 1-2 years2-3 yearsType of facility: Private, small playschool run out of a rented bottom floor of a townhouse.There is little/no parental involvement with the administration or running of the facility.REVIEW: We entered our 2-year-old in January 2015 when the 2s program began at this new Giocare location. Giocare already had programs in two other locations. It was the first time in daycare for our child and for most of the children attending. We were nervous but he's had a great experience and we are very happy with it. We were looking for a relaxed but somewhat structured environment where our child could have fun but still be exposed to organized activities where play was emphasized. This is what we got, and the teachers are very warm and loving, making the children feel comfortable. The children's day is structured into activities, but not rigid. Our child had a complex background which we explained to the director, who understood it well and offered to provide any extra assistance as needed. We had concerns early on about how our child was adjusting, which the director addressed immediately. She is always available by phone and email, which is very helpful and comforting, and which we try not to abuse! The school provides feedback through a parent teacher conference, which was helpful, and gives parents an opportunity to socialize about once a month, which we really liked. I would recommend Giocare to anyone who is interested in a relaxed learning/play environment with very warm teachers.Would you recommend? Highly recommendWould you send your child again? Absolutely
    Reviewed by
    On 20-Jul-2015
    Subject:  Review Submitted via 2014-2015 Daycare/Preschool Survey
    Comment:  Program: Toddler and pre-k Length of time: Full-time Child’s Age: 4-5 yearsType of facility: Privately run daycare/preschool with multiple classes and teachersThere is little/no parental involvement with the administration or running of the facility.REVIEW: My son was in Giocare from when it started as a small playgroup to its current 3-site expansion. It is a wonderfully nurturing, stimulating program that blends the best if multiple philosophies while cultivating a loving, responsive and communal atmosphere. The teaching team is led by an expert director who leads and guides curricula and work to support each child's unique needs. It is still small and nimble with all kinds of magical touches and visiting teaching artists that complement the play-based philosophy. They differentiate instruction as necessary and competently managed transitions and supported children who had distinct, emerging needs. It has all the best of the larger, more well-known programs, with an intimacy that allows for active parent participation (based in parents' situations) and for a flexibility and responsiveness that is ideal. I love how well they integrated the different curricular themes, the pacing, use of tools and props to ensure that all learners' were building skills and feeling mastery. Although I know they aptly managed disciplinary situations, this was not an issue we dealt with directly. My child was confident, happy, and thriving and I could see his evolution and verbal development (particularly since he started off being very quiet and speaking little English). It is really well balanced, and they are very supportive to parents confronting the various challenging transitional issues.Would you recommend? Highly recommendWould you send your child again? Absolutely
    Reviewed by
    On 20-Jul-2015
    Subject:  Review Submitted via 2014-2015 Daycare/Preschool Survey
    Comment:  Length of time: 3 half days Child’s Age: 2-3 yearsType of facility: Private, small daycare/playschool experience run out of a person's home with a very small number of childrenThere is little/no parental involvement with the administration or running of the facility.REVIEW: My daughter thoroughly enjoyed Giocare and had a wonderful experience there. She was very shy and reluctant to go in the beginning and that changed very quickly. By the second week she was eager to go back. The philosophy was play-based with structure which fit very well with how we play at home. We received detailed, weekly newsletters of the happenings at the school as well as very thorough parent-teacher conferences where I learned invaluable insight into my child's development. Everyone there truly cared about my daughter and it showed every day. She really came out of her shell throughout the year and I owe most of that to the outstanding teachers at Giocare.Would you recommend? Highly recommendWould you send your child again? Maybe
    Reviewed by
    On 14-Jun-2015
    Subject:  Re: drop in summer camp?
    Comment:   Giocare (giocareplaygroup.com) will let you sign up for individual days on days when they have openings. They only have 2 of their 3 sites open this summer, so they won’t have days open every day, but you can check. I don’t know if there’s a minimum number of days you have to sign up for.
    Reviewed by
    On 08-Dec-2014
    Subject:  Local Slope daycare?
    Comment:  Don't know where in the neighborhood you are, but Giocare Playschool is a great place to check. (November 2014)
    Reviewed by
    On 07-Dec-2014
    Subject:  Re: [PSP] Daycare openings starting in January
    Comment:  Giocare Playschool is a good choice. Ellen expanded her facility this year so it's likely she has capacity. Ellen has a PhD in Early Childhood Development from Columbia and is a professor besides, so she has an excellent program. We had both our kids there the last 4-5 years and can't say enough good things about it. (November 2014)
    Reviewed by Reviews 2014
    On 18-Nov-2014
    Subject:  2014 Daycare/Preschool PSP review
    Comment:  Program: Toddler 2's Length of Time: 2 mornings a week Child's Age: 1-2 years Review: Giocare is a wonderful school with dedicated and loving teachers. My son has learned so much- songs, counting, social skills, and words- while in a stimulating environment that allows for free play bad freedom of expression. He had a hard time transitioning, but the teachers were supportive and loving to him. Now he loves going. Snacks are healthy (fruit and veggies) and I appreciate not having to pack snack. Recommend (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend Would you send your child again? Absolutely
    Reviewed by Reviews 2014
    On 18-Nov-2014
    Subject:  2014 Daycare/Preschool PSP review
    Comment:  Length of Time: part days 2x a week Child's Age: 2-3 years Review: The administrator, Ellen, is very concerned with the needs of my child and I feel very comfortable sending my child here. Recommend (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend Would you send your child again? Absolutely
    Reviewed by Reviews 2014
    On 07-Aug-2014
    Subject:  2014 Summer Camp Review
    Comment:  Program: Age of Child: 4 Likes: Fun, flexible hours/days, good theme (used fairy tales each week which tied to crafts, activities and trips) What would you change? Nothing Would you send your child(ren) again? Yes Do you recommend? Highly recommend Do you have any other information to add? Really good with active boys and building a sense of community
    Reviewed by
    On 26-Jun-2014
    Subject:  Geocare Playschool?
    Comment:  I think you mean Giocare Playschool? My daughter is finishing up her first year there now in the preschool location (there is also a toddler location) and we absolutely love it. Ellen, who is the director is an amazing woman and provides an enriching and exciting environment. I can tell you that all of the parents in my daughters class emphatically LOVE it. My son is going to start with the toddlers in the fall and esme will do after school there (she is doing Part day at 295).
    Reviewed by
    On 26-Jun-2014
    Subject:  Geocare Playschool?
    Comment:  My son did the toddler class at Giocare as well and, I agree, Ellen the head teacher and owner is wonderful as a teacher and is also an all-around lovely person. My son had a wonderful experience there. I would highly recommend it.
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 25-Oct-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Summer Camp Experience
    Comment:  Age of Child: 2Likes: Homey environment, staff very responsive to parental inquiries/concerns, many excursions (zoo, puppet show, botanic garden, beach), flexible scheduleWould you send your child(ren) again? YesDo you recommend? Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 25-Oct-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Summer Camp Experience
    Comment:  Age of Child: 3Likes: Lots of fun activities and trips. Each two weeks had a theme and trips/activities were organized around the theme. Lots of outside time and fun. They are very patient with very active boys. I loved the level of communication and pictures. I got emails about anything out of the ordinary and could easily reach Ellen the director.What would you change? Nothing I can think of - was a great experienceWould you send your child(ren) again? YesDo you recommend? Highly recommendDo you have any other information to add? The director really has a great sense of children and their developmental needs.
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Length of time: 5 days per week Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: My son has been at Giocare since he was 21 months old, beginning with a twice-weekly playgroup, and transitioning to 3 full days of preschool, beginning in the fall. Ellen Cerniglia, the director of Giocare, is truly a remarkable educator. She is insightful, communicative, creative, blends wonderful modalities, and works tirelessly to meet the unique needs of each child. I love that she uses elements of Reggio Emilia, Montessori, and other philosophies. Ellen teaches early childhood at the graduate level, so she is engaged teacher on many levels and up-to-date on the research. She recognizes the distinct assets of each child and is very affirming. She does not patholigize, but work with parents to strategize on challenges, and has really created a loving, nurturing learning environment. She is equally responsive and communicative with parents of young learners, who are also trying to figure out how and under what circumstances their child will thrive. I am educator who has worked with educational programs for 22 years, so I feel like I know a thing or two about learning, but I am not an expert in early childhood. Ellen and her new team are continually modifying, evolving and adjusting. This is an ideal learning environment. Ellen has also worked to create a community around her students, one that really engages parents and caretakers alike. She is responsive and understands the needs of working parents--this was very important for me in a stressful, new job. The balance is really supportive and affirming. My child has taken leaps and bounds and relishes his time at Giocare.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: preschool Length of time: 3 part days a week Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: The greatest. I saw Ellen (program director) put up a little advertisement on Park Slope Parents and was unsure about sending my son to any preschool because of the financial reasons. At the time she was only offering a playgroup but then said in the fall of 2012 she was offering 3 days a week half day for 3 year olds. So I went to visit her place and even though it was in her home, (the 18th street location, she now has a new location also on 23rd street which is not her home) it was set up completely like a pre-k. I have an older son so I have seen a lot of those rooms and she had it set up just like a pre-k room with the separations and the book area and the carpet area, tables and project areas, etc. When I spoke to her and she listed her qualifications, I could tell she had a lot of experience. I could also tell she was completely on top of the business side of it too, more meaning having the right licensing and paperwork and really just having it all together getting good assistants, etc. She was great, and warm her assistants were awesome, my son really liked her and the assistant very much. Just all around better then I could ever expect for what at the time was a just starting out preschool/playgroup. And it is an awesome place, I have an older son who was in a very nice daycare/preschool but this one was better. The program director is really knowledgable about preschool education and it is all around great!Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Preschool Length of time: Full time, m/w/f Child's age: 4-5 yearsReview: Giocare is a wonderful place to send your child before preschool and beyond. The philosophy is play-based it's low-key but structured in a way that the kids are happy and learning. it's just an amazing place. Ellen is extremely helpful and kind. shes willing to do whatever to make sure everyone is informed and comfortable. she really pays attention to everyone's needs. She listens and she genuinely cares about her students!! She guided us through the process of my child being evaluated for special needs. she kept in contact with me to make sure we all knew about his progress and what we needed to work on and what he was doing well. She was extremely supportive when we started working with a SIET and OT. she was a part of his team and a key part of his progress. The two other teachers are just as fantastic, focused and caring. I never felt uncomfortable leaving him there and he never felt uncomfortable staying. I truly hope I will be able to send his younger sibling there in a few years.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend<<< PSP Note: this reviewer has recommended Giocare Playschool in the past >>>
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: preschool time and toddler time Length of time: full days, 5 days/week Child's age: 1-2 years3-4 yearsReview: My oldest daughter started at Giocare two years ago, when Ellen Cerniglia first opened her doors for drop-off play time. Ellen then expanded to a 3-day-a-week preschool, and is going full time this coming year. I'll be putting my 3.5 year old and nearly-2-year-old 5 days a week, full days. Ellen is not only incredible with the kids, full of energy and ideas, but also calm in the face of chaos, patient, gentle and a font of wisdom when it comes to all things kids. I've often called or email Ellen for advice on how to handle my daughter's behavior changes or sleep challenges or issues with her younger sister, and Ellen quickly replies with advice and reassurances. My daughter loves every minute of school and can't wait to head out the door in the morning. She considers Ellen and the other teachers her friends, and is constantly surprising me with the things she's learned, her expanding vocabulary, and her ability to work through complicated emotions. You can read about Ellen's philosophy on her website, which I think is similar to some of the other schools in the neighborhood, but all the evidence I need is how well my daughter is doing, how happy she is, and how responsive Ellen is to our whole family. I can't recommend this place highly enough.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Toddler Time Length of time: Part Days-2 Days/Wk Child's age: 2-3 yearsReview: My experience was Giocare exceeded my wildest expectations. As a newbie to everything, I did my due diligent on the playschool/pre-school front for my 2 year old. I wanted to find a small but structured facility that would care and engage him as much as he was being cared for and engaged at home with momma. Ms. Ellen and Ms. Dinelle provided my son with the structure, guidance and love he needed to adjust being away from home. Their core program and the feedback we received throughout the entire year was more then I would have ever expected. This was not daycare, this was an enrichment based, center focused, structured environment where little people can learn to be the best versions of themselves amongst their peers and adults. I cannot expressed the deep respect and appreciation I have for how much time, attention and care Ms. Ellen had with my son.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Length of time: Part Days (Full Days available for 2013-2014 year) Child's age: 2-3 years3-4 yearsReview: I can't say enough about how happy I am about my experience with Giocare Playschool. The teachers are energetic, grounded, well-informed and kind. They're able to meet the needs of my thoughtful, creative 4-yr old daughter as well as my rambunctious 2-yr old son. My kids come back excited about their day, what they learned and how to treat one another. It's a home-based environment, which I found to be so much of an easier transition for them (and me). It's both comforting but also laid out in a way that really works as a school learning environment. There's a back yard that they play in and learn about gardening. Plus, there have been field trips to the firehouse, garden and library. The head teacher, Ellen, is highly trained in early childhood development, but also comes at teaching from her perspective of having three kids of her own. She's attentive to the kids, their individual needs and my needs as a parent. Whenever I've had concerns about my kids, she's been available to talk and help. It's like having extended family teaching your kids. Last but not least, they keep their prices reasonable and are flexible about payment options. I highly recommend it!Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend<<< PSP Note: this reviewer has recommended Giocare Playschool in the past >>>
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: NA Length of time: Part day 3 days/week Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: I feel incredibly fortunate to have found Giocare. Ms. Ellen has an incredibly warm and welcoming presence and immediately made my daughter feel comfortable. Her teaching philosophy is based on learning thru play which I think is a great way to learn at this age. My daughter has learned and experienced a lot at school this year.The school is currently based out of her house which has worked great but she just rented a new location which will give them a little more room. Both locations have a backyard and the kids were outside essentially every day.Our experience at Giocare has been only positive and I highly recommend itDo you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Playschool Length of time: Part time, 3 days Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: When I was looking for preschool options for my son, I was looking for programs with individualized care, structure, and play based learning. A step up from the day care experiences he had in the past. I found it all with Ellen Cerniglia at Giocare. She and her staff provided a loving and educational and FUN first time school experience for my son. Ellen is a very thoughtful and helpful educator. She's an expert but never condescending and always collaborative. When my son was still struggling after the first few weeks with separation from me in the morning, Ellen and I emailed over several days to sculpt a plan. She spoke with my son to allow his input as well. The plan worked! This is just one example of many times when she's been supportive to me and other parents. The atmosphere at Giocare is friendly and open and flexible but it has a clear structure for the kids to follow. Creative and outdoor experiences are a priority. Everything from the ever changing sensory table to their monthly self portraits to baking and cooking provided a well rounded learning environment. Ellen responds to the interests of her students. When she noticed many of the children wanted to "sign in" at drop off like mom or dad, she provided an extra sheet for them to have a turn. I can't say enough about this special program.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Toddler Time Length of time: 2 part days a week Child's age: 2-3 yearsReview: My son really came into his own under this program. The compassion and skill of the teachers is wonderful. The philosophy is really play-based which I like, and the toddler time was perfect for our family since we were unsure how our son would do in a full time program. The transition at the beginning of the year was a challenge for my child but "Ms. Ellen", the head teacher, really believed in my son and I think he is really proud of himself (and we are too) as to how much he has come out of his shell in large part because of the encouragement of the teachers and the great program offered at Giocare.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Toddler Time Length of time: 2 days, 3 hours per day Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: My child has had a great experience at Giocare. The teachers are energetic, caring and smart. My son began the program in the winter, not at the same time as the rest of the toddlers. At first he was hesitant to participate in circle time. The teachers there were patient, not forcing him to join but allowing him to come around on his own terms. They all excitedly told me about when he decided to join. In addition, my son made great strides with using the potty and social interactions. I enjoy all of the extra activities that Ms. Ellen plans for the toddlers: field trips to the library, botanical gardens, making ice cream and a family picnic. Also, Ms. Ellen does a great job communicating with the parents, even those who don't get to drop off/pick up their child. She regularly sends links to photos, lets us know about special activities, send us updates about what they are learning and conversation starters.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Toddler Time & Pre-school class Length of time: 2/3 days weekly Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: We have had an extremely positive experience with Giocare - Ellen and her staff are great with kids, fantastic with parents, provide a safe, loving atmosphere - We whole-heartedly recommend Giocare for your toddler. If you're looking for play-based learning that concentrates on socialization, creativity, and fun Giocare is for you. Our son was more attached to adults than children and was very defensive at his first school. In 6 months he is much better socialized and no longer views school with suspicion and dread.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by Administrator
    On 08-Jul-2013
    Subject:  Review from 2013 Daycare/Preschool PSP Survey
    Comment:  Review date June 2013 (for 2012-2013 year)Program: Toddler Time and Preschool Time Length of time: Part Days and 3 days per week Child's age: 3-4 yearsReview: Giocare is a loving, open, warm and play based environment. The teachers are fantastic. Highly educated, focused, invested in every child and very communicative with parents. The program is very creative with lots of wonderful activities for the children that follow themes and correspond with the time of year, etc. The philosophy seems to be one of learning through play and imagination in a way that's best suited for each child. While there is a focus on structure and cooperative play/learning we feel our child's individual needs were constantly being assessed and working together with us the teachers helped to address anything that needed our combined attention. The staff at Giocare go out of there way to communicate verbally but also in writing about their observations about the children. It's this amazing level of communication that really sets this program apart from others. Currently the program is located in the home of the director and lead teacher but an additional and separate location a few blocks away will be opening soon.Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by PSPMemberReview
    On 10-Nov-2012
    Comment:  My son went to Giocare as well. Miss Ellen, the head teacher and owner, is truly wonderful. My son loved it. Would highly recommend it!
    Reviewed by PSPMemberReview
    On 10-Nov-2012
    Comment:  ISO: Toddler drop-off classes without full-time commitment?My son goes to Toddler Time at Giocare Playschool in South Slope/Greenwood Heights. He loves it and I think it is a great program. It runs Tuesdays/Thursdays from 9-10:30 or you can do a half day from 9-12.http://giocareplayschool.com/
    Reviewed by PSPMemberReview
    On 04-Aug-2012
    Comment:  Length of TIme: 1.5 hrs 3 days a week Child's Age: 2-3 years Review: Giocare's focus is about learning through play. My child is all about play and energy so I thought this program would be a good fit. It was a great experience for us. There is only one teacher so classes are small, which I liked. Progress reports were sent out periodically and mid year there was a one on one with the teacher. My child has a few issues that needed to be addressed, and she handled it with professionalism and devised a plan to improve the situation. She set up a site where we could see photos and video of the program, which was nice. She plans to broaden the program in the fall to longer days and incorporating the elements that a regular preschool has. Overall, her kindness, flexibility and spirit made me feel so comfortable leaving my child in her care. Do you recommend? (Hi/Rec/DoNot) Highly recommend
    Reviewed by PSPMemberReview
    On 09-Jun-2012
    Comment:  My daughter loves going to preschool at Giocare Playschool. She's always excited about the day and the new activities waiting for her. Ellen, the head teacher, is cheerful, kind and patient. She's really well informed about early childhood education and makes sure the kids are exposed to age appropriate experiences. I love the casual classroom environment and the fact that the kids have enough elbow room to play. It's a great transition from being at home to being in a more structured Pre-K/Kindergarten classroom. I plan to send my son next year for the 2's program, and my daughter will continue onto the 3's program. I highly recommend.
    Reviewed by PSPMemberReview
    On 08-Jan-2012
    Comment:  PROGRAM: 2's Length of Time: 1.5 hr a week, moving into 9 to 12 m-f, Fall 2012 2-3 years Wonderful low-key environment. Small class. Reasonably priced. Very experienced, calm and easygoing teacher. Great program for children who haven't been in daycare or other preschool environments who need to learn about sharing,playing together, cleaning up toys and transitioning into different activities. She helps with whatever the child is weaker in and lets you know how its progressing. Also good to give advice on how to keep things progressing at home. Do You Recommend? Highly recommend (Review date: December, 2011)