As we near our tentative open date, Small Tales continues to prepare our halls and classrooms for our little learners; with each and every tiny chair, picture book , and new toy that enters our center we begin to see our ideas come to life. Our staff has worked hard to construct an inviting environment for children to learn and parents to feel welcomed. We want Small Tales to be an open space to play, grow, create, and discuss new and exciting innovations in the world of education.
Our building blocks have been stacked one by one and are starting to form the place we have envisioned from the beginning. Some of those blocks we brought ourselves, others came from irreplaceable figures in our community. Warrensburg Central School, a pioneering force on the front of early literacy, has graciously donated boxes upon boxes of children’s books to add to the Small Tales Library. Amy Reddy, the school’s Library MediaSpecialist, greeted us with a smile as she lifted hundreds of books onto a table for the Lotus Group to pick from. Richards Library, one of the town’s first literacy leaders, will also be donating a recycled portion of their inventory to our growing collection of children’s literature. Without the encouragement and of our educational institutions, Small Tales would undoubtedly be lost.
Small Tales has also been given time and effort from members of our community, two things that are irreplaceable when building a place for children to learn and grow. Teachers and administrators from the school district have offered us their opinions and advice, have reached out and supported Lotus Loves Literacy, and have given us important perspective on what parents are looking for in their educators. Our daycare team, who individually bring expertise and knowledge different parts of the field, have given us insight about what is going on in the ever-changing world of child care.
Some of our staff at Lotus have dedicated countless hours to learning all they can about the rules, regulations, new program options, age appropriate curriculum, healthy food options, and more all to ensure our center is the best of its kind. Other Lotus members bring their own experience in daycare to the table, offering helpful hints and answers to questions we have had along the way. Jan Higgins and Leigh Cain of Hobby Horse Playschool have not only brought us experience, but have given us themselves– friendly faces our families will immediately recognize! Muralist, Patty LaFountain, has began to decorate the walls with her beautiful renderings of famous story book characters.
As we watch our center grow, with the help of people from this beautiful place we call home, we can’t help but stop and smile. Just a few months ago, Small Tales was merely an empty building. Our staff walked inside a facility that seemed to look like a daycare structurally, but had no life or character. As the days and weeks went by, and ideas flew back and forth inside the office, through the phone lines, and from our friends and neighbors, we started to see something magical happen. The empty building started to look like a school-a place where you would see a child sitting on a carpet reading a book or playing a game. The rooms started to look like a child’s classroom, filled with little chairs and tables, smocks, and toys. In just a few weeks-these scenarios will come to life right before our eyes; tiny feet will be filing down the halls, teachers will be softly reading to their students as they lay down for a nap, parents will arrive to pick up their child, ready to hear about all they learned that day.
Check out some before and after photos below and tell us what you think! What are you most excited to see at Small Tales? Email us your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stay tuned for information on our Open House Block Party!