There's a New Preschool in Bergen County Like No Other!

Author: Meadowlands YMCA
Date Posted: Monday, January 8, 2018

preschool in East Rutherford NJ

The Mara Center for Early Childhood Learning is a preschool in East Rutherford, NJ that's housed within the Meadowlands YMCA facility. Our mission is nurturing the potential of every child with age appropriate, center-based learning activities and a curriculum that develops social, emotional and creative skills to establish a lifelong love of learning.

The Meadowlands YMCA, which has offered childcare for nearly 100 years has recently moved into its new home in East Rutherford, NJ. The Mara Center’s new, modern facility, was designed alongside the 83,200 square foot Meadowlands YMCA, which houses many incredible amenities for its childcare service and extended hours from 7AM – 6:30PM to support working parents.

Our new preschool in Bergen County, which hosts children ranging from six weeks to five years old, is unique in offering daytime care for infants and toddlers in addition to our preschool program. The Mara Center's education program offers dedicated classrooms and curriculum for each age group, which allows the early education school to best serve the educational needs for all of its students.

The Mara Center l is housed within a self-contained wing at the Meadowlands YMCA, with a private entrance and an advanced security system. The classrooms offer a bright, spacious, and inviting environment that make it a comfortable and positive learning atmosphere for little learners who are spending their first days in a school setting. Our interest-based learning centers in each classroom offer an effective way to inspire creativity and self-confidence in students, which are the driving forces of intellectual development. 

The learning centers include a myriad of productive and formative subjects including:

Reading/Language Arts

Comprehensive skills, story telling, creative writing, and foreign languages.


Health, Earth science, ecology, and anatomy.

Social Studies

Families, culture, communities, and geography. 


Typing, navigation skills, and interactive educational software.

Dramatic Play/Performing Arts

Theater, music and movement, and yoga.

Fine Motor Skills

Cutting/pasting, handwriting, and molding. 

Gross Motor Skills

Sports, running, and playful exercise. 

Manipulative Skills

Building blocks, architectural projects, and more. 

A turfed outdoor play area, a gift from the New York Giants and NFL PLAY 60, is accessible to children with all abilities for active play times. It’s a fundamental asset in helping teachers to provide sensible approach of educational development and physical health by aligning itself with the YMCA’s focus of youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility.

John Mara, owner of the NY Giants and lead donor of the school, echoed the community-oriented mission of the YMCA after seeing the school for the first time. "We wanted to do something to help improve the quality of life for people who live and work in the community," Mara said after a tour of the classrooms. "I'm amazed at what the YMCA has been able to accomplish without a single location. I think having their own building will be [is] a great benefit ... and having a daycare ... is just such a benefit to working moms and dads, it struck a chord with us."

A stunning facility needs passionate and experienced teachers to help it thrive. All Mara Center teachers have Early Childhood Education degrees, which helps it to meet or exceed the rigorous program standards set by the New Jersey Department of Education, including: Student/Teacher ratios, New Jersey Student Learning Standards, Grow NJ Kids and STEAM. All teachers are trained in CPR, First Aid and Epi–Pen support. The preschool also benefits from youth development programs common among YMCAs, such as Healthy U and CATCH (Coordinated Approach to Child Health) programs, which focus on educating youth on health and nutrition.

The Mara Center for Early Childhood Learning features open enrollment, a free YMCA family membership, a 10% sibling discount, and offers financial assistance to families. The culture of giving and empathy at the Y is truly contagious and helps to establish a positive learning atmosphere for developing children. Parent’s will also enjoy having access to the many services included in their YMCA membership, such as access to free preschool-age activity classes, the new aquatics center, Gatorade Gym, state-of-the-art Wellness Center, over 70 free group exercise classes and much more.

The Mara Center truly gives parents a reliable and trustworthy option for their newborns, toddlers and preschoolers. Personal tours are available daily and open houses are scheduled every few months for interested parents. The schedule can be found below.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017: 7am - 11am & 5pm - 7pm

Sunday, January 28, 2018: 12:00pm - 2:00pm (Football Theme)

Saturday, March 24, 2018: 12:00pm - 2:00pm (Summer Camp)

Monday - Friday, May 14-18, 2018: 7:00am - 6:30pm (During regular operating hours.)

Wednesday, August 15, 2018: 5:30pm - 7:30pm (Ice Cream Social Theme)

Saturday, October 20, 2018: 12:00pm - 2:00pm (Fall Festival Theme)

For those interested in setting up tours, contact Mara Center Director, Jennifer Grinberg at or (201) 636-0053. 


0 comments on "There's a New Preschool in Bergen County Like No Other!"

Leave a Comment