top of page


OCP was started as a parent-participatory nursery school in 1992, operating out of a recreation building in Burbank.  

“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play IS serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.” - Mr. Rogers

OCP is a cooperative parent participation, play-based preschool program located in Burbank, CA. The yearly school calendar closely follows that of Burbank USD.

OCP is a designated safe space. We welcome families from all walks of life. Our community holds diversity, equity, and inclusion as paramount. Most importantly, we want our students to feel safe, loved, and comfortable in expressing and being themselves. 

OCP builds community. Being a co-op, OCP is a place where families can find community and a sense of belonging. We believe in not only building our school community, but giving back to our larger community through park clean-ups, volunteering, and involvement in community events like Burbank Family Pride.


At OCP we aim to honor the innate curiosity and diversity of our young learners. We encourage risky play, problem-solving, collaboration, and community. Understanding that a feeling of relational safety is the key to student success, we emphasize social-emotional learning, encouraging our students to share their feelings, while supporting them in navigating emotions, conflict resolution, and transitions.

We foster an understanding of ecological stewardship and our connectedness to the planet, including Nature as one of our teachers through various activities from nature walks and plant identification to worm finding. Through our caregiver- participation, cooperative, play-based, child-led model, we build a community that seeks to understand the whole child, providing learning opportunities to deepen each student’s curiosity and develop their confidence, resilience, kindness, and compassion.


Member Families of Our Children’s Place Cooperative Preschool choose OCP for many reasons. Paramount is that our families and educators hold a shared vision for what we dream our world and learning spaces should be.

OCP’s model of the early childhood classroom reflects our vision that it truly takes a village to raise a child. Thus, we create intergenerational learning spaces where everyone from children to grown-ups feels safe, welcomed, embraced, and accepted. We believe that every parent/caregiver is a partner in their child’s learning journey. As such, families should be welcomed and encouraged to bring their knowledge, strengths, and talents into the classroom.

We value the importance of healthy risk-taking, process art, and collaborative play, as we aim to create a learning environment where messiness and mistakes are not scolded but rather recognized as an invaluable part of the learning process.

OCP is a school where we help one another determine our strengths and areas of growth, discovering how we can share our unique talents to create a positive impact in the larger world. It is a place where we encourage students to take risks and try new methods, all the while building resilience, as we learn together, always leading from a place of wonder, curiosity, and compassion.
As a cooperative, we strive to build an inclusive and compassionate community of families that support each other as we care for our children, all of our children.

Because after all, we are Our Children’s Place

Advocacy: to advocate for oneself and each other
Awareness: to be aware of how our actions and words are reciprocal and interconnected
Acceptance: to create a space where all are seen and heard

Democracy: to make norms and decisions through intentional group process
Community: to belong and work together for a common goal

Curiosity: to wonder and explore
Confidence: to believe in oneself and the strengths of our community
Compassion: to reflect on our feelings and experiences

Empathy: to hold space for our multitude of human emotions

Kindness: to share and to care
Safety: to feel free to be our authentic selves and safe to explore our world
Inclusivity: to represent our diverse world
Responsibility: to take care of ourselves, each other, and our Earth
Life-long Learning: to recognize we are always learning and to lead with curiosity


The Benefits of Play 

Cognitive skills: There is a link between learning through play and a wide variety of cognitive sub-skills including children’s ability to sustain attention, think critically, solve problems, make decisions, develop executive functioning skills, reason using evidence, and evaluate what they know and do not know (metacognition).

Social skills: Play is uniquely beneficial in helping children develop social skills, linking it to children’s social competence and school readiness. Skills practiced and acquired through play include collaboration, communication, understanding other people’s perspectives through sharing ideas, negotiating rules, and building empathy.

Emotional skills: Skills proven to be linked to playful learning include self-regulation and self-control - with play enabling children to learn how to deal with frustration and disappointments by building self-awareness and handling impulses, self-efficacy - the feeling that one is competent and in control, coping and resilience, self-esteem, self-awareness, and persistence.

Physical skills:  Play-based learning provides more than just physical activity; skillsets gained include understanding movement and space through practicing sensory-motor skills, developing spatial understanding, becoming physically confident with their whole body and with more focused (fine motor) movements, and nurturing an active and healthy body.

Creative skills: There is a positive link between learning through play and creativity including fostering creative thinking/problem-solving, learning to prioritize the most meaningful or relevant ideas to transform into reality, expressing ideas and creating associations, and symbolizing and representing ideas.

The Lego Foundation - Learning Through Play and the Development of Holistic Skills Across Childhood

bottom of page