Little Dolphins By The Sea is an independent not-for-profit school located in Santa Monica. We have served Santa Monica, Brentwood, Westwood, Venice, Pacific Palisades, Marina del Rey, Malibu, Mar Vista and the surrounding Westside communities for 30 years.


Founded in 1992, Little Dolphins By the Sea promotes imaginative thinking through rich, immersive experiences in art, theater, music, and literature. We recognize that children learn best when they feel secure and seen, and that they engage most deeply when their senses are awakened. We focus on developing the whole child including social, emotional, physical, and cognitive skills, all while helping build a love of learning through active play.

Little Dolphins is unique in the way our teachers and children engage with each other. Unlike other schools, at LD every single teacher and team member knows each and every family and student on a personal level.  As opposed to having closed classroom units, all of our students interact on the play yard, during morning circle, and our monthly festivals. This fosters a greater depth of community and connection, as well as cultivates in our children, the understanding that they are part of something bigger than themselves. This inter-connectedness is the essence of what makes our students grow up to be kind, upstanding citizens in our world.

Our generous campus in Santa Monica allows us to offer an exceptional learning experience. A 5,500 sq. ft. building, including classrooms, a library, and a large performance space, provides a stimulating environment for projects and play. A 17,000 sq. ft. yard serves as an outdoor classroom and community hub, with a garden, play structure, sand box, project center, lunchroom, and a large stage in the shade of a grove of mature olive trees.

Little Dolphins is a five-day-a-week program, from 8:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. for children ages starting at 2 years and 5 months. The Mountain Lions program spans ages 4 to 4.5 years, and runs from 8:45 a.m.– 2:15 p.m. Our Transitional Kindergarten (TK) program, which runs from 8:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m., is for children who are between 4.5 to 5.5 years of age who may be in a transitional year between preschool and kindergarten. Our purpose is to provide an approach to academic skill development focusing on the whole child and their individual needs. We also offer daily after school enrichment programs for working parents until 3:45 p.m. Our enchanted Campus (5,550 sq. ft. indoor and 17,000 sq. ft. outdoor) provides a stimulating environment for projects and play. Come visit and discover the wonder of our school today!

Our individualized learning plans, small class sizes, one-on-one instruction, and developmentally-appropriate curriculums founded in brain research create a safe space for our students to explore their interests, believe in their dreams, and ignite their imaginations through play.

Please call the office or fill out our inquiry form for more information about Little Dolphins By the Sea.

"Deep in my heart I feel that Little Dolphins is a Magical place that fosters a strong sense of connection and Joy, nurtured as we gather to play, sing, dance, create, listen to stories and to each  other with pure compassion and deep respect."

"All of us teachers strive everyday to live and embody a profound human experience with an open heart filled with passion and wonder.I know that each one of our daily experiences flowers brightly during our colorful Festival, as we gather together as a family.I have been part of Little Dolphins for a long time and I still and will always delight and marvel in the sweet Magic we create every day." - DOMI ALEXANDRE, SENIOR CREATIVE ARTISTIC DIRECTOR