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Rancho Penasquitos KinderCare

Alma Gandarilla, Center Director

10065 Paseo Montril San Diego CA 92129
(858) 484-3232 Contact this center

Ages: 6 Weeks to 5 YEARS

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We are currently enrolling for all ages six-weeks-old to six-years-old. Join us for a center tour and take a look first-hand how our center will be the perfect choice for you. In addition, you are welcome to attend one of our Open House events where we showcase our classrooms and some of our curriculum activities.


Welcome to the Rancho Penasquitos KinderCare. We serve families in Mira Mesa, Poway, Rancho Penasquitos, and Scripps.  Our center strives on giving children the best experience possible, starting with infants as young as 6 weeks to preschool.  We focus on providing a safe and loving environment for all children in our care. We are sure your little one will have the best time playing and learning at our center. Whether your child has first words or first grade on the horizon, we’re excited to show you how everything in our center is designed for learning!

Alma Gandarilla, Center Director

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  • Accreditation Seal Every Day · Every Child · Excellence · Accreditated · Knowledge Universe
  • NAC Accreditation NAC
  • NAEYC Accreditation NAEYC

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children with teacher


We’re so proud!

Nationally only 10% of daycares are accredited–nearly 100% of our learning centers are. That’s a big difference, and that means KinderCare kids are getting the very best. Here’s why.

illustrated bear in rocketship


Our kids are taking off!

By kindergarten, our kids are testing ahead of their peers. Read all about it.


Many of our child care centers are accredited by national organizations that require us to meet rigorous early childhood education standards and guidelines for high-quality care and education. Programs that are accredited have demonstrated their commitment to go beyond the state’s minimum licensing requirements to meet and maintain these high standards of quality.

Our Programs

Infant Programs (6 weeks - 1 year)

Babies grow and learn every day. Our goal is to provide a safe and nurturing "home away from home" where babies can explore and make new discoveries. We know that learning through play is extremely valuable at this age and our Early Foundations® Infant program is designed to give babies the skills that will serve as the building blocks for a lifetime of learning.

Toddler Programs (1 – 2 Years)

As toddlers develop friendships, self-esteem, and curiosity, our Early Foundations® Toddler program will help them explore their world in a safe and nurturing environment. Our unique curriculum is based on the philosophy that children learn best through experiences. So each day is filled with fun activities that excite and develop toddlers, giving them the comfort and confidence to speak those first few important words, as well as make their first friends.

Discovery Preschool Programs (2 – 3 Years)

At this age, children are making new discoveries daily. And as two-year olds begin to exert their independence, our Early Foundations® Discovery Preschool program is prepared to open their eyes to a world of learning, sharing, and exploring. Our holistic approach in the classroom engages young minds with a blend of music, art, and movement, as well as the early education fundamentals they'll need as they continue on to preschool.

Preschool Programs (3 – 4 Years)

As preschoolers gain more self-esteem, they may feel ready to take on the world. Our Early Foundations® Preschool program enhances that confidence by providing activities to help children become problem solvers and lifelong learners. Through independent exploration, structured activities, and hands-on learning, children will work on early literacy, math, science, and social studies concepts. A healthy dose of running, jumping, and dancing keeps them active too.

Prekindergarten Programs (4 – 5 Years)

Prekindergartners are preparing for the adventure of a lifetime – school. And our Early Foundations Prekindergarten® program is designed to get them ready by teaching letters and words, math concepts, and valuable social skills. With small group instruction, independent play in an organized atmosphere, and whole-group activities, children will have all the right skills to hop, skip, and jump right into kindergarten.

Summer Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)

Don’t miss out on KinderCare’s Summer of Wonder: Six themed programs that will make summer exciting, educational and tons of fun. Whether your child is in our preschool, Pre-K or school-age programs, all of it is designed to help children learn while soaking up the fun. We offer flexible scheduling options to meet the needs of busy families like yours so we hope to see you there.

Participating Child Care Aware Center

KinderCare has partnered with Child Care Aware® of America in an effort to offer fee assistance for Active Duty military families and solutions to their child care needs when care at a Child Development Center on the installation is not available.

Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program


Ongoing research proves that early exposure to music helps children think, reason, create, and express themselves. Children will laugh and learn about rhythm, vocal melodies, and a variety of musical genres and instruments, which can lower stress and advance memory. Learning never sounded so good.

Phonics & Reading Adventures

Set your child up for advanced success with literacy through phonics, the study of letters and sounds. Reader books, games, and activity cards help your child understand the basics of vowels and blending syllables, giving him confidence and command of language.

Teachers & Staff

Meet some of the wonderful teachers and staff that make up our center.

  • Alma Gandarilla

    Alma Gandarilla, Center Director

    I am an advocate for children's rights. We as adults need to be their voice, stand up for them and make their needs heard. I believe they deserve all the respect, care, positive guidance and love this world has to offer.

    Ms. Alma has always enjoyed teaching and working in the education field. Her passion has been to teach children of all ages and learn from them as well!! She enjoys being a part of each child's development, helping children learn from the world around them. She leads a strong team of teachers, that share her love for children as well as teaching. She enjoys seeing children grow and watch how they slowly develop their unique personalities. Ms. Alma has been quoted saying, "I love how children can make you laugh, they brighten up my day!"

    Previous Experience:
    Ms. Alma has worked with various organizations all within the childcare and education field. Her experience encompasses working with children of all ages from infants to teenagers. She worked as a before and after school counselor with older children in elementary and middle school. She has also worked with "at risk" teens for the Polinsky Center. Shortly before becoming a Director, she was an infant and toddler and two-year-old teacher for KinderCare. Ms. Alma worked with infants and toddlers for three years before becoming a Center Director. She has been at the Rancho Penasquitos for three years and has loved every minute!!
    Year Started:
    11 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    15 years
    Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies with an emphasis in Child Development
  • Houda Ahmadi, Assistant Director

    I love to plant the seeds of knowledge, curiosity and wisdom. Sprinkle the children with love and nurture their growth!

    Ms. Houda does a wonderful job promoting our Learning Adventures Programs and each one of our other curriculum programs. She has a wonderful outlook on life and always stays positive. She loves to be around children and advocates providing children with nurturing and loving care. Her best quality is her caring nature towards everyone not just children, but she shows compassion and truly cares for those families in our center and for those she works with.

    Previous Experience:
    Ms. Houda has worked for KinderCare for six years. Before that she was in the retail industry but decided that working with children and their families was something she really enjoyed doing. She began her career as a Prekindergarten teacher and experienced working in the infant room as well. She then decided to use her skills and knowledge of business to step into the Assistant Director position at the Rancho Penasquitos KinderCare.
    Year Started:
    11 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    10 years
    Bachelor' of Science in Business
  • Ms. Grace

    Ms. Grace, Infants

    I love my job because I love being around children and being able to help families. The best part of my job is seeing the smiles, hearing the laughter and receiving hugs from the children. It is rewarding to be a part of the children's growth and development. My goal is to provide a fun, safe, and nurturing place for them because I want them to be happy and feel at home.

    Ms. Grace enjoys working with children of all ages especially the infants and toddlers.  She earned a Bachelor of Science degree from San Diego State and took several Child Development courses from Miramar and Mesa College.  She is certified in pediatric CPR and First Aid.  Ms. Grace has experience in helping first time parents feel at ease with leaving their precious little ones in her care and also in helping infants reach their developmental milestones.  Her favorite activities to do with the infants are art and sensory exploration to help promote creative and fine motor development.  She also introduces sign language to promote early communication and plays music from around the world in her classroom.  In her spare time, Ms. Grace helps children with special needs and she enjoys spending time with her family and friends.  She loves to travel to new places and try new foods.

    Previous Experience:
    Before discovering her passion in working with children, Ms. Grace worked in the Finance and Accounting industry but has always taken an interest in working with children. She was inspired by her mother to begin a career in Early Childhood education. Ms. Grace has been in the EC Education field for 5 years and started as a Toddler teacher before working as an infant teacher and specializing in the Early Foundations Infant Program at KinderCare.
    Year Started:
    7 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    5 years
    Bachelor of Science in Psycology and Finance
  • Ms. Laci, Toddler

    Previous Experience:
    I have worked in the child development field for three years specifically with KinderCare in the toddler room. Before joining this team I had over 10 years experience teaching children dance. I've taught children of all ages from two year olds up to high school age.
    Year Started:
    4 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    BA in Early Childhood Development
  • Ms. Shavona

    Ms. Shavona, Discovery Preschool (2's)

    I love watching how children master new concepts and how they can come up with an innovative idea. I choose to teach because I know that I can make a difference and have a positive impact on a child's life both in and out of the classroom.

    Ms. Shavona has been working in the child development field for 14 years.  She joined our center after transferring from a KinderCare in Texas.  Ms. Shavona attended Grambling State University where she studied Elementary Education with a minor in Deaf Education.  She has her Child Development teacher permit and recently obtained a Child Development Associates credential.  She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Development with a specialty in psychology.  Ms. Shavona enjoys bringing dramatic play areas to life so that her children can really use their imagination and take on any role they choose.  During her free time she enjoys reading, shopping and playing bingo.

    Previous Experience:
    Ms. Shavona has a vast experience in the child development industry. She has worked at home daycare centers, public schools, tutoring programs and elementary and junior high mentor programs.
    Year Started:
    6 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    Child Development Associates Credential

Upcoming Center Activities

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September's Learning Focus

Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Spaces and Places and All About Me
As infants and toddlers explore the spaces and places around them, children in Discovery Preschool will learn all about what makes people the same as well as what makes them different. Infants will experiment with moving toy cars around, build block towers and then knock them down, and even take a tour of the center to see what things are like outside of their classroom! Toddlers will get all revved up as they take a closer look at different vehicles and learn more about neighborhoods, communities, and the jobs that grownups have. In Discovery Preschool, children will be learning about themselves as they play games that strengthen their five senses, discuss feelings and emotions, practice self-help skills, and work on learning the names of body parts.

Children 4 to 5 years old: All About Me and My Home and Family
It’s the beginning of the school year—the perfect time to get to know each other better! Older children will be spending time sharing about themselves, their homes, and their families as they learn what makes people the same and what makes them different. Children will bring their own experiences to the drawing board as they create group stories and 3-D collages about families and homes, pantomime different home- and family-related activities, and draw self-portraits. With our curriculum’s project-related learning component, children in Transitional Kindergarten work together to decide on an individual or whole-group project related to the theme. Past projects have included creating a class book about emotions or working together to build a small-scale home, but who knows—the children may come up with a unique idea that’s entirely their own!

Monday September 04, 2017
Center Closed for Labor Day

About Our Center

Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and through the various training opportunities in the community.

Languages Spoken at Our Center

  • Arabic
  • French
  • Spanish
  • Farsi, Tagalog, Chinese

Meals & Menus

Meals Served

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • PM Snack

Additional Menu Options

  • Vegetarian
  • Special diets

Center Menu

Holidays Observed

We observe the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • President's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • 4th of July
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Day after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Day

Please note that because holidays observed may vary between centers, please be sure to check with your Center Director for specific closures.

Health and Safety

Safety of the children in our care is priority all day and every day. We take extra security measures to ensure that the children in our care are well and safe. Some of the safety measures at our center include keypad entry, fenced and alarmed playground, CPR and First Aid certifications for all staff members, and monthly disaster drills.

At KinderCare, what families say about us means a lot. Read below some of the great experiences our families have had with us.

Share Your Story
If you have a story about your experience at KinderCare, please share your story with us.

We've been with KinderCare since Daniel was only two-and-a-half months old. He is turning four-years-old soon and enjoys being in Preschool. We can't imagine going to another school because he gets the best care and learning experience here. We learned as well, as new parents how to change diapers, potty train, read and play with our son with the help and advice from KinderCare staff. Thank you!

- Mother

My daughter started at KinderCare when she was only eight weeks old. She is reaching all her milestones thanks to the great care and curriculum at KinderCare. The teachers here are really awesome!

- Mother

Our son has been attending the Rancho Pen KinderCare for one-and-a-half years now and we have nothing but praise for the center. The administration and teachers are amazing and have had such a huge impact on Alex's development. He surprises us every day with the new things that he learns at the center. We know that choosing between daycare and nannies is a big and difficult decision that all parents face, but we honestly have had no regrets of sending our precious son to KinderCare. We now know that it was the best decision that we made and would not go anywhere else. In fact our new son, Kellan, will soon be joining his big brother at KinderCare.

- Mother

See what’s happening on the blog

Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and though the various training opportunities in the community.

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Resources for Parents

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