Stepping Stones Preschool has been instrumental in not only our children’s spiritual growth but also our children’s emotional development and social growth. Dropping your child off on that 1st day of school can make you very anxious; however, the feeling of warmth, love and compassion each staff member illustrates was one of the most comforting feelings I have ever felt. I knew after our visit our children would be loved, cared for and protected beyond reason. The love each staff member has for Jesus. Their solid faith is very evident. The curriculum at Stepping Stones has catapulted our children to be prepared emotionally, socially and academically for Kindergarten. Our daughter is in 1st grade and is thriving and it is due to the foundation she learned while at Stepping Stones. Our son just completed his Kindergarten testing and immediately following the test the teacher told me “that was the fastest and easiest test I have done in years.” Education and a spiritual foundation are very important to our family and every single one of our needs were met beyond our expectations. I highly encourage & recommend Stepping Stones to all families.
We have been at Stepping Stones Preschool for the past three years and chose (and continue to choose) this preschool for many reasons. They have a Godly Board of Directors and staff; which is reflected in their communication and curriculum. They hire high-quality teachers who clearly love and serve the Lord with a passion for teaching early education. Academically, we were blown away at how prepared and advanced our child was entering kindergarten this year. Every child is different, but we attribute our child's successful launch into kindergarten because of this program. The hands-on learning style is engaging and fun, and you will remember what you're being taught if you're having fun! Spiritually, Stepping Stones felt the most like home for our family and we instantly knew our children would receive the same Biblical message they are taught at home, and that they would be kept safe and cared for. We have been richly blessed by this preschool!
Our Teachers Make the Difference
Each of our three children went through Stepping Stones for a total of six years. We are so grateful that Stepping Stones is a part of our family story. The teachers provided a genuinely warm and caring atmosphere while teaching our children the beginning basics of learning and being a friend to others. Our children excelled under the training of Stepping Stones teachers who are at the same time both structured and gracious. We enjoyed classes at the main campus and Lighthouse campus. Every time we drive by that sweet white picket fence, our youngest exclaims "There's my Preschool!"
The Right Environment for Our Children
To whom it may concern,
My daughter was enrolled in Miss Sarah's 2nd Year, PreK program for the 2019-2020 school year. Due to COVID-19, her in-person preschool year was cut short. While we all scrambled to adjust and adapt to life during such unprecedented times, Miss Sarah embraced the "new normal" with transparent communication and a passion to continue educating our children to the best of her ability.
Miss Sarah quickly came up with plan that not only allowed our kiddos to continue learning safely, but remain actively engaged in learning and motivated to continue building a solid educational foundation. As a parent, I was extremely pleased with the efficiency of this new learning platform. Zero learning time was wasted as weekly "bags" of learning materials were quickly created, lesson plans were thoroughly written (literally anyone could pick them up and follow them easily) and daily and weekly videos were thoughtfully recorded.
As a kindergarten teacher, I was prepared to help my daughter continue learning at home. However, being responsible for my own students while navigating new learning platforms myself, I was overjoyed at the way Stepping Stones handled the challenge of distance learning. While I thought it was nearly impossible to complete successfully with my kindergarteners, I was pleasantly surprised at how resilient and confident my preschooler was thanks to all of Miss Sarah's hard work.
It is not lost on me the amount of work that went into each weekly bag. From day one, parents were given clear instructions as to how and when they could safely access student materials. Each child had a clearly labeled bag complete with EVERYTHING needed for a full week of instruction across all subject areas. Manipulatives, worksheets, games, materials for art projects and science projects, etc were always included in each bag. Never did I have to run to the store or scrounge around my house to gather necessary supplies. Full lesson plans were also included each week. As stated above, they were clearly labeled and so thoroughly written (including pictures and website links) that any parent could easily follow them. While each family was encouraged to complete activities at their own pace, the lesson plans made it easy to make sure I was covering all subject areas, while doing my best to recreate lessons my daughter would have been doing if in class with Miss Sarah that day.
In addition to quality materials and plans, Miss Sarah would send daily videos to each family. These videos were not only informative, but interactive as well. My daughter would look forward to these each morning as they provided a much needed "connection to" Miss Sarah when in-person contact was not possible. During these videos Miss Sarah would provide instruction, read stories, sing songs, conduct bible lessons and review daily lesson plans. I also want to note, Miss Sarah frequently sent "bedtime story" videos- which were a huge hit with her students and their parents alike!
Communication between families during the spring was not only necessary for parents, but for the relationships between the students and Miss Sarah during a tough adjustment in daily life. Miss Sarah would conduct weekly Zoom calls which my daughter loved. She was able to visit and see her classmates and share activities and information with some of her favorite people- her friends and her beloved preschool teacher. Sarah also went above and beyond to conduct individual Facetime and phone calls, frequently added handwritten notes to students in the weekly bags, and even visited each kiddo at their home- socially distanced, of course! These acts may seem small, but made a huge impact on my daughter. To this day she still talks about when "Miss Sarah came to her house and gave her silly string", has her notes taped up on her desk and laughs about the things her classmates did and said during their Zoom meetings.
While distance learning is not an ideal situation for any learner, young or old, the safety of our students and staff is of the upmost importance and I fully believe Stepping Stones did absolutely everything to make the very best of a tough situation. I fully intend to implement Stepping Stone's way of providing both materials and instruction with my own students as we embark on another year of distance learning. My husband and I are so thankful for our daughter's experience at Stepping Stones and highly recommend it to any parent looking for a quality education (whether in person or online) for their child. My colleagues and I always say that we can tell the students who "come from Stepping Stones" as their skill set is high, their behavior and academic foundations are solid and their passion for learning is fully engaged.
We love Miss Sarah and the Stepping Stones program and look forward to the day our son will attend.
As most parents, we felt sheer panic, sadness, and fear when COVID-19 hit mid school year 2019/2020. We were in our routine. We loved our school. Our kids were happy, and we were blind sided to say the least.
We had two kids at Stepping Stones during this time. Stepping Stones went above and beyond to ensure we were up to date on any plans and thoughts they had.
Almost immediately they had a plan and implemented it. Every Monday we would be given a packet (following proper social distancing of course). The packets were made up of so many activities, work sheets, games, and in depth day to day instructions of what to do, how to do it, and when to do it. We also received personal videos from the teachers multiple times a week. They continued doing Chapel through remote learning, sang songs, and even did science experiments. They did this all while 100% following proper social distancing. They never failed to show how much they loved and cared for their students even if it was through a screen. They made it easy to do the work when we had time as a family during the week as my husband and I both work full time.
We are so thankful for the quick thinking and genuine love the teachers here have for all of the students. We have our youngest enrolled again for this upcoming school year regardless of what it brings. We trust Stepping Stones to provide us with the tools needed for success.
Sincerely, Nichole Shervanick A Local Gig Harbor Mom
Our family decided to bring our two daughters, Sadie and Cora, to Stepping Stones for their initial preschool years and we have been indebted to this foundation. The warm and caring atmosphere that spilled from the walls and playground of Stepping Stones each day that we pulled into the round-a-bout has carried these girls forward into their schooling (now 6th and 3rd graders) and we will be forever grateful that they had their introduction to being away from us in a learning environment that was God-centered. The teachers at Stepping Stones have a patience and guidance about them that eased the girls into what school could be. We are very grateful for our experiences at Stepping Stones and hope that each child can have the opportunity to begin their curiosity of learning in an environment like Stepping Stones.
I cannot recommend Stepping Stones enough. All 3 of my kids were fortunate enough to attend preschool here and had wonderful experiences. The teachers are so loving and kind and made my kids feel welcomed every morning when they walked in. It was important that our kids' preschool be strong academically, but also teach them about Jesus. They learned the Fruits of the Spirit and memorized bible verses along with learning their letters and numbers. Could not have asked for a better academic start for my kids!
As a former elementary teacher and now a stay-at-home-mom of four, I’ve been in at least a dozen preschool classrooms. I can’t recommend Stepping Stones highly enough. Christ is at the center of all that is done at Stepping Stones. The teachers reflect His joy, kindness, love and grace. Lessons and activities are remarkably fun and engaging for the students - from dry ice experiments to slime-making to Daddy Pumpkin Carving Night. Classroom management seems exemplary; I have yet to hear of even a single discipline problem! Our daughter has learned the numbers 1-20, all the letters and their sounds and she has begun reading Bob books at home. STEAM activities are abundant and more impressive than I’ve seen in most K-5 classrooms. She’s made great friends and loves going to school. Communication from the teachers is excellent as well. We receive monthly newsletters, activity calendars and even photos of classroom activities texted from the teacher! The SS teachers that I’ve known are experienced, devoted to serving Christ, love their jobs and are truly excellent teachers. One morning, after I had been out of town, our daughter uncharacteristically didn’t want to go to school - she wanted to stay at home with me since I’d been gone. When we got to preschool, she clung to me at the door of the classroom and Miss Sarah, with her years of experience (as a mom and a former elementary teacher), warmly and seemingly-magically enveloped her into an activity. Within 5 minutes, she texted me a photo of our 4 year old smiling and happily playing. We’re so grateful for the influence of Stepping Stones in our daughter’s life and wholeheartedly recommend it!