Meadowlands Area YMCA


Preschool & Child Care

Building Brighter Futures

Preschool & Child Care for Children 6 Weeks - 5 Years Old 


We focus on 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 Mara Center for Early Childhood Learning is housed within the new Meadowlands YMCA, which has offered child care for nearly 100 years. We couldn't be more excited to have our new home providing daycare and preschool in East Rutherford! During our extensive history of youth development, we've created approaches that are scientifically proven to be effective. Parents can have peace of mind knowing their child is in a safe and productive environment at the Y. 


Free Family Membership to the Y included with enrollment!

*Limited time only. 

And as Y members, you get special pricing on sports and activity classes for the whole family, plus some FREE classes!


  • State-licensed, high quality facilities 
  • Year-round schedule, Monday - Friday
  • Open enrollment, full and part time 
  • Flexible schedules and extended hours: 7am - 6:30pm
  • Child/teacher ratios that exceed New Jersey standards
  • Age appropriate curriculum
  • Teachers certified in CPR, First-Aid, and Epi-Pen support
  • Experienced, certified, and caring staff
  • Nationally recognized Healthy U program using the CATCH® Curriculum
  • Monthly in house educational visits from local zoos, artists, and community leaders
  • STEAM (Science, Technology, Art, Engineering and Math)
  • Recreational swim and gym time at the Y
  • Healthy snacks (peanut-free center)
  • Structured play time
  • Daily reports on your child's day
  • Field trips and special events
  • Summer Camp for preschoolers
  • Family programs
  • Open door policy

Our Facility FEATURES: 

  • A self-contained wing of the Meadowlands YMCA with a private entrance and state-of-the-art security system
  • Brand new, bright, large, and modern indoor space with age-appropriate classrooms
  • Turfed outdoor play area that's accessible to all ages 
  • Access to the YMCA's various amenities (Technology Lab, Gatorade gym, & Aquatics Center)
  • Cafe with a health-conscious menu that's available for school lunches and take-home meals

Advantages of Interest-Based Learning Centers

Center-based learning combines lesson plans and playful activities, which has proven to engage imagination, intelligence, language, social skills, and perceptual motor abilities in infants and young children. Learning in this format is tied to the development of cognitive, socio-emotional, and physical behaviors. If a child enjoys the cerebral sensations of a lesson, they’re not only more likely to remember it, but want to learn more. By using approaches like songs-based learning, the class becomes more enjoyable and relatable for the child.  Additionally, involving them in active decision-making and games also helps to retain information. 

Learn More Here

A Positive Learning Atmosphere

With our interest-based learn centers and well-trained staff, the Mara Center provides a positive atmosphere that will instill a lifelong love of learning in our students. We are a multi-cultural center that celebrates the cultures, languages, and customs of all members of our community. A sensitivity to diversity, ethnic groups, nationalities, and languages is woven into our daily activities. 


Tuesday, December 4th, 2018: 5:30pm - 7:00pm 

Registration & Info




Parent Handbook


Click to call

Call 201-636-0053 x258


Are you Interested in learning more? 

First Name
Last Name
Child / Children's Name(s) and ages

Example: Jon Doe - 3
               Jane Smith - 2