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Early Education And Care

Four Directions

We are a multicultural, therapeutic preschool in South Minneapolis. We offer full-day, year-round, education and care for children age 16 months to 12 years, including access to Ojibwe and Dakota language immersion classrooms by Wicoie Nandagikendan.

We are a multicultural, therapeutic preschool in South Minneapolis.

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Vibrant and Multicultural: Our highly trained staff reflect the diversity of our students and families. We pride ourselves on being responsive to all communities.

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Accessible and Therapeutic: We offer access to therapeutic services and developmental screenings within 30 days of enrollment to ensure every child’s success.

Services to Support You and Your Child

  • Free transportation from nearby areas
  • Free healthy meals and snacks
  • Experienced, multilingual and culturally diverse teaching staff
  • Access to Ojibwe and Dakota language immersion classrooms and cultural traditions by Wicoie Nandagikendan
  • Personalized attention through small class sizes
  • 100% free developmental screenings for all children within 30 days. We provide you with your child’s screening information that can be used for their kindergarten enrollment.
  • Early therapy intervention on-site: If your child needs a boost, we provide early therapy intervention on-site. Therapies include speech, occupational, physical and play therapy to enhance learning potential.
  • Access to dental/vision/hearing checkups and services
  • Access to The Family Partnership services for family members

Enrollment and Eligibility


Four Directions is open to all families.

Tuition and Forms of Payment

We accept private pay and these forms of payment:

  • Child-care assistance program (CCAP)
  • Pathway I and II scholarships
  • Think Small scholarships
  • Post-secondary scholarships

During the application process, we can discuss how you can apply for scholarships.

Schedule a Tour

Get to know us and tour our preschool. We can answer more questions and concerns with a virtual tour or in-person.

For more information on scheduling a tour, contact:

Mary Rainey
Direct: 612-722-0766

How to Enroll

We accept students year-round based on classroom availability. Our staff will walk through the application process with you when you are ready to apply. We accept students year-round based on classroom availability.

For more information contact:

Mary Rainey
Direct: 612-722-0766

Our Location and Hours

Location: 1527 E. Lake St., Minneapolis, MN 55407
Phone: 612-722-0762
Fax: 612-722-0787
Hours: Monday – Friday, 7 am – 6 pm

If you have any questions about Four Directions or would like to start the enrollment process, please contact Mary Rainey.

My kids attended Ojibwe language immersion during the school year. All the teachers just spoke Ojibwe. My kids really blossomed. They are learning the indigenous language of Minnesota.

Lucy, Mother of two children formerly at Four Directions Family Center

Preserving American Indian Language, Culture, Values and Traditions

Deb Boswell designed the Four Directions logo under the direction of Lillian Rice. The image represents as follows: 

The eagle to the North; the bear to the East; the bison (buffalo) to the South; and, the wolf to the West. The turtle had offered its back to carry the Earth after the great flood. The Circle with the four segments represents many things including the four seasons and the four stages of life (baby, youth, adult, elder – they circle around because they are becoming, not as a certain point, but as emotional-physical-mental-spiritual seeking balance). The Eastern doorway – straight East through the bear image is where we come into and leave out of this life plane (in Ojibwe, omaa aaking). The children are the kids around the school.

We provide highly rated education.

Our early childhood education and care is top-rated by leading authorities.

Wicoie Nandagikendan teaches Ojibwe and Dakota language-immersion classrooms and leads culturally specific activities and outings. We have been accredited by NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) and 4-star rated (the highest level) by Minnesota’s Parent Aware. We have also been rated as Strong Beginnings Centers by Hennepin County and the Minnesota Department of Human Services. This rating requires additional program components (such as higher staff to child ratios) that deliver increased kindergarten readiness and family engagement.

We create strong partnerships!

Our Family Worker is ready to assist your family with any issues, needs or connection to resources.

  • Four Directions offers multiple age and language classrooms, indoor and outdoor play areas, monthly family events and participation in community events.
  • We conduct home visits to help parents support their child’s education. 
  • Our staff also provides coaching and tutoring for older children and teens.
  • We refer family members/provide access to other Family Partnership services as needed.
  • We will work with your whole family to help your child be successful, maximize your unique strengths and help with any needs.

Let’s talk!

If you have any questions about Four Directions or would like to start the enrollment process, please contact us today.

Mary Rainey

Director, Four Directions

Direct: 612-722-0766

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Looking for additional services?

We provide holistic services including mental health therapy, early childhood education and care, family home visiting and advocacy services.