A parent's cooperative preschool, est. 1933.

Welcome to MCPC!

Montclair Community Play Center, est. 1933


Let’s Play!

Montclair Community Play Center (MCPC) is a play-based parent’s cooperative preschool in Oakland, CA.


Each year since 1933, our beloved play-based school has created community with 25 diverse families, working together to facilitate our children's development in all areas. Working in community, we create a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment, in which our children can learn to resolve conflict, build self-esteem and value diversity. Our campus is located in Montclair and nestled among beautiful redwood trees. Our space includes a nature area with chickens, two large outdoor play spaces, an all-weather outdoor art space, a large playroom, a stand-alone learning annex and a snack room.

Learn more about our programs:


Why choose a co-op preschool?


At no other time in your child's life will you have the opportunity to be so involved and influential in your child's education. You will experience your child's joy of discovery, power of independence, and pride of accomplishment. As MCPC parents, we have experienced the rewards of a cooperative preschool, and know that we have truly provided an excellent learning opportunity for our children. And though participation in a cooperative preschool can be demanding, we find the rewards of parent education and the time spent interacting with our children are well worth the effort.

Learn more about parent participation.

MCPC’s Philosophy

Our programs are based on four key principles:


Developmental Model of Learning

Emphasizes free-choice play and hands-on experience that satisfies children's needs, interests and abilities.


parental involvement

Daily interaction supports learning for both parent and child. To promote parental involvement, we offer parent education on a variety of child-rearing topics throughout the year.


Focus on Conflict Resolution

Parents and children learn the skills they need to resolve conflict both at school and home.



All programs and activities integrate diversity and inclusion as a key pillar. Our anti-bias orientation allows children to explore the differences and similarities between people, in a safe and open environment.

MCPC was a wonderful experience for my shy kid. He blossomed into a happy confident kid, thanks to the amazing teachers and warm community.
— Karen H.
I learned to be a better parent and live in the moment with my child. He had a good time too.
— Wendy A.
I had all three of my kids in MCPC. I was there 6 consecutive years. It was a lot of work and a big commitment for our family, but we chose MCPC for it’s play based, loving environment. All the various teachers were wonderful, and my children who are now teenagers, learned valuable life lessons that have served them well as they entered grade school and still stick with them now as teenagers. Thank you, MCPC!
— Leslie W., 2007–2013 mcpc alum
If you understand the importance of play-based education, and agree with the idea that kids are best served when they are respected and honored as themselves, then MCPC is the place for you.
— Faye S.
Play-based REALLY works! Preschool kids are at an age that meant to explore and learn about the world through play, we are so glad MCPC embraces this philosophy
— parent of Owl graduate 2016
Why would anyone want to go to any other preschool? Doesn’t everyone know how awesome MCPC is?
— Lilian, MCPC Alum, age 7
Three years post preschool, my son and I continue to benefit from the MCPC community — rich with life-long lessons and friends.
— Amanda H.
After more than 80 years in existence MCPC has gathered volumes of collective wisdom and experience in play based early childhood development. It’s been and amazing education for both our children and our whole family, indeed!
— Josh H.
I never thought I would get my best friendships as an adult made at my kid’s preschool. MCPC is the epitome of community

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