Friends of Mine

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A cooperative preschool. A loving and supportive community.

Come Play With Us

Treat a child as though they already are the person they are capable of becoming.

-Dr. Becky Bailey, Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline

- Dr. Becky Bailey

Friends of Mine is the oldest, continually running cooperative preschool in the Asheville area. As a parent cooperative, Friends of Mine is owned, operated, administered, and maintained by the parents on a non-profit basis. Parents serve as educational assistants in the classroom, participate in fundraising, serve as Board members, and participate in parent/teacher meetings.

A parent cooperative forms a triangular relationship where the children, the parents, and the teacher all learn from one another. 

Each family is responsible for working one day a week so, every day we have 1 teacher and 2 or 3 parent assistants in the classroom.

Who We Are...



We believe children learn best through play. At FOM, kids learn through "hands on, minds on" activities. They participate in center time free play, morning circle routines including group songs, theater, yoga, group pretend, dance parties, art, journal time, and lots of outside play.

We believe in the precepts of Conscious Discipline. The skills and methods outlined in the book, Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline by Becky Bailey are about "loving guidance", connection, AND modeling calming down before addressing behaviors. Each family receives a copy of the book and support in learning the methods. 

What We Believe...



Hi! My name is Heather Ward. For the last twenty years I have bounced between being an artist, an educator, a business owner, and a parent to two amazing daughters. They're now 12 and 18 years old. 

In the classroom I see myself as a facilitator, curator, role model, appreciator, and host.  I see preschool as a time for young children to develop independence, volition, and a sense of self. I believe in a presence-based approach to educating, which lends itself to conscious discipline and draws on my knowledge of child development. I want my students to have meaningful learning. I am honored to serve this remarkable community at Friends of Mine. 

Our Teacher...



As of February 2021, we have had zero cases of COVID-19 in our immediate community. We've kept our community safe by implementing health protocols including but not limited to:

- members agreeing to a social contract
- daily temperature and symptom checks
- mask wearing at all times except when eating
- regular hand washing
- increased outside time 
- indoor HEPA filter
- windows-open air circulation indoors

COVID Precautions...



Selection of our children and families is based on our commitment to balance each class by age, gender, and cultural diversity, and to foster a community of families who are enthusiastic about being involved in a cooperative preschool. 


The current monthly fee rate is:
3 Day = $300
4 Day = $365

Please note that there is a $200 enrollment fee and additional fees may apply for field trips and extracurricular programs. 


Friends of Mine Preschool admits children from 2.5 to 5 years old for a mixed age classroom experience. Our school day runs from 8:45am-12:45pm and the schedule includes snack time, lunch time, outside time and group time with variable lesson or exploration time. 


- wren cook

Friends of Mine Cooperative Preschool has been one of the best experiences for my family! Both of my children thrived because their social and emotional learning was the priority in this small, supportive, play-based community. As a parent of young children, I loved seeing them grow alongside their friends, and I made lasting friendships of my own. 

- jordan barker

FOM is the community that our family was seeking for a long time and each week I feel like I learn as much, working with other parents and children, as my child does.

- Anna Pizzo

I don’t think I would have made it through 2020 without Friends of Mine. It’s a true community where you get to know the kids and parents. There’s a great mix of free play and creative projects, with a constant flow of new songs, toys and celebrations.”

- Julia Haverstock

Friends of Mine preschool embodies everything about community. It's hard work and the payoff is invaluable. There's no way to measure or place monetary value on the relationships built here. Kiddos and parents alike thrive and experience support here. To see my children have the experience of being seen and loved by so many folks has been incredible.
And it's fun too! Everyone plays and makes art and learns so much. 

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21 Edwin Place
Asheville, NC

Friends of Mine Preschool

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