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Parent Handbook


The Abundant Beginnings Community (ABC) School is in session on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays* from 8:30am to 2:00pm. Children are to arrive during soft start between 8:30am and 9:15am. Pick-up is between 1:45pm and 2:00pm. After-Care may be available through a parent-led cooperative. Children should arrive with appropriate clothing, snack, lunch, and water bottle. All of these items should be in a backpack that they can handle by themselves. It is very important that children can independently open and close their lunch containers and pack their bags themselves. We ask that children do not bring bags or containers with characters on them.

*We will increase to four days a week in Fall 2017



Pickup and Drop off are always at the Lake Merritt Botanical Garden. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we will adventure to Joaquin Miller Park. On Wednesdays, we stay in the Lake Merritt Botanical Gardens (base camp)  or visit a nearby community farm, garden or forest space.


Dress Code

Suitable clothing consists of play clothes that promote freedom of movement and freedom from worry about spills, splatters, and dirt. Clothing should also be simple enough for your child to get in and out of easily, with little or no help. Belts are discouraged because they can hinder your child’s ability to use the bathroom quickly and can lead to embarrassing accidents. Clothing with fasteners that children can handle themselves builds confidence!

The weather in the Bay Area is often changing and we will be outdoors all the time! We suggest your child come wearing layers and sturdy shoes. Children must come packed with a full change of clothes in their backpack for if they get wet and/or muddy. Please feel free to ask us about how to prepare your child for the weather!

We honor the self expression of all people, and know that children's interest and preferences are often very strong. However, we ask that children not wear clothes with characters on them. We are aiming to create an advertisement-free community. Movie and television characters on clothing and lunch containers often encourage distractibility and silly behavior. Also, children will often compete with one another and even engage in ‘put-downs’ with regards to the character printed on their clothing. For these reasons we have imposed a No Character or Superhero Rule.



Children will be assisted as necessary with toileting. When we are on hikes in the forest,  they will be allowed to “nature pee”. Children's development is often varied and we accept children who use diapers. Families are responsible for providing all supplies need for diapering.

We do not gender bathrooms-

Daily Rhythm

8:30am- Arrival

Greetings! Everyone settles in and there is free, unstructured play at base camp.

9:15am- Good Morning Song

We sing our Good Morning Song, say “See you soon!” to any remaining family members and begin to restore our environment.

9:30am- Morning Meeting

We center our bodies and check in with our friends about how they’re feeling and what ideas they have for the day. The teacher provides the day’s offering and we discuss current projects. Children are invited to have snack, if they are hungry.

10:00am- Morning Adventure

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we head into the forest at Joaquin Miller Park for independent investigations and collective projects. On Wednesdays, we enjoy base camp, explore our community, and will often have Community Members come in for “Show and Tell” such as music, yoga, or art. On Wednesdays, we may also head to the library to read, check out books, and research our projects.

12:00pm- Afternoon Meeting

We center our bodies, eat our lunch, and engage in dialogue about everyone’s adventures and projects.

12:45pm- Rest

We set up tents and sleeping bags for quiet rest, listening to stories, and winding down for the day.

1:45-2:00pm- Pickup

We meet with our family members and ensure that our children have all of the items that they brought at the beginning of the day.


During this time, we are only accepting children that would like to participate in a program three days a week. In the Fall of 2017, we will have full and part time options.

Tuition is $12,000 a year per child*. Payments can be made on a quarterly or monthly basis. It is vital that our program is accessible to families. Please let us know if your family needs financial support, as sliding scale is available. We also provide a “Struggle is Real” Discount, which offers 30% off on all services to families of color.

*This cost includes attendance at all Abundant Summers Camps, creating a year round care schedule.