Parents seek resources at annual preschool fair

Layne Grace, 2, right, tries out magnetic building blocks at one of the more than 20 booths on hand at the Santa Clarita Valley 6th Annual Preschool Fair held at The Centre in Santa Clarita on Saturday. Dan Watson/The Signal

With preschool in mind, parents visited the sixth annual Santa Clarita Preschool Fair at the Santa Clarita Activities Center on Saturday.

Parents were met with over 20 tables from different preschools and various child care providers, speaking with instructors, owners and representatives. The event was hosted by My Preschool Fair, a resource provider that works across southern California to help parents find the right programs for their children.

“A lot of times, with the new homes coming up, families migrate to this area from the valley or even the west side,” said Malena Jackson, the fair’s organizer. “I found that this is a good resource to have for families with small children who want to know more about the top preschools in the area or the kid friendly businesses, like the pediatric dentists, the My Gym (Children’s Fitness Center) and karate classes.”

Jackson said she hoped parents feel less overwhelmed at looking for different paths for their children and could connect better one-on-one with a preschool director or karate instructor.

Options for parents included Back to Health Chiropractic, Small World Preschool, Brain Balance Achievement Centers, Hugo’s GymFitness and Santa Clarita Children’s Dental, among others.

Karen Linares, president of Family Day Care Association of the Santa Clarita Valley, said parents she spoke with were interested in home childcare and preschools with a smaller presence of children.

“Most preschools are licensed for up to 14 (instructors) and that would mean you would have two adults for basically every six kids,” she said. “So you have smaller numbers sitting at your table and they’re more able to grasp concepts and just get individual attention than some of the centers.”

Family Day Care Association is a nonprofit organization focused on helping families find child care best suited for them. Beside their display table, children could play with puppets or a wooden marble tree while their parents received information. Linares, who attended the first preschool fair, said she always enjoys meeting with people in the community.

“It gives you the chance to get your face out there and just see what your community is looking for,” she said.

Across the room, Chao Li, his wife Caren and their daughters played in the arts and crafts area of the fair. They’ve attended different fairs offering similar resources, as their youngest daughter sets off to attend preschool.

“It’s fun,” Li said. “We mostly are just collecting sheets (that) the booths had. It’s good for information.”

To learn more about My Preschool Fair, go to  

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