The Understory is a preschool, also known as a nursery school. (I much prefer the term nursery school, but preschool is the widely accepted terminology, so…)

The Understory is a fun and cozy place, homelike and interesting.

The Understory is a community of young children, led by a wise and loving teacher.

The Understory is a garden for growing little people.

The Understory provides children with room to play and explore; nourishment for their bodies, hearts, and minds; friendships and social skills; fresh air and sunshine and earth and rain.

The Understory is a children’s garden as envisioned by the educator Friedrich Fröbel, who in 1837 created a “care, playing and activity institute for small children”, which he called kindergarten.

The Understory is a nursery for young children to be gently guided in their growth.



The Understory is located in the Hawthorne/Belmont area of Southeast Portland, just down the street from Sunnyside Environmental School (SES).    Children 3 and 4 years of age are invited join us!

Schedule & Rates

School days are Tuesday-Friday 9am-1pm during the school year. For 2020-2021, rates are $725/month (4 days/week) or $685/month (3 days/week). NOW ENROLLING FOR 2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR.

To apply…

Please call or email to arrange a visit.  Enrollment is ongoing until all spaces for the coming year are filled.   Mia Pisano