Little Stepping Stones has two daily care programs, as well as after school and summer programs
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Little Stepping Stones (LSS) is a family owned business, founded in 2001 with the opening of our first facility on Technology Drive in Garner. LSS continued to grow steadily, opening its second center on Cleveland Road in the summer of 2006. In 2018, we decided to shift our focus back to just one facility and kept our Cleveland Road location.

LSS is owned and operated by Mary Moore and Jennifer Gibbs. Mary has retired from the daily operations, but is still very much involved in the decision making process. Jennifer (mom of five!) is actively involved in the day-to-day operations. Mary has 15 years of teaching experience with the Montesorri method while Jennifer has 20+ years of experience in childcare, as well as a Bachelors Degree in Psychology. Staff members at LSS are chosen carefully and receive ongoing training.

Each classroom is clean, bright, and designed to engage the children, with age-appropriate materials and furnishings. Classrooms include Learning Centers, stationed about the room, to build skills in language, science, social studies, mathematics, art, music and drama. Learning Centers vary based on the age of the children. Lesson Plans are posted in each room and are designed using Creative Curriculum.

Our Philosophy on Child Development

All children love to learn. The real question is how to teach? At LSS, we've seen that children learn by doing. Adults have jobs - children play. Through play, they learn the social, emotional, physical, and intellectual skills they need to develop into happy and well-adjusted individuals.

Parents may wonder how play can help their child reach his or her full potential. Shouldn't they be doing math or learning letters? They are - research shows thata child's play lays a strong foundation for creativity, as well as reading, writing and mathematical reasoning.

Benefits of Play

  • Physical or Motor Skills: These skills develop as a child learns to reach, crawl, walk, run, climb, jump, throw, catch and balance. Fine-motor skills, which need to be in place by kindergarten so children can hold a pencil or write, are developed by handling small objects, such as puzzle pieces, crayons or beads
  • Mental Skills: Play teaches problem solving and helps children learn cause and effect. It is essential for language skills as children learn to communicate with each other and identify objects by name. Colors, shapes, sizes, letters, counting - the foundation is set by playing store or building blocks or singing songs. Kids are learning as they play.
  • Social Skills: Play also helps children understand what is needed to interact successfully with others. They must follow direction, cooperate, take turns and share, as well as respect adults and follow the rules.
  • Emotional Skills: Self-esteem is critical for a well-developed child and play can be a strong factor. Children experience pleasure and pride in their creations and successes, learn to problem-solve, understand friendship and manage their emotions through role play.
  • Creativity: Play stimulates imagination and allows children to expand their potential. When children pretend to be a doctor, a teacher, a parent, a firefighter, they learn that life is full of possibilities.

Learning Centers

Learning Centers are small stations in the classrooms with specific activities to engage and educate the children. These centers encourage discovery and exploration and allow for teaching in small groups or one-on-one. The centers also help develop a child's sense of responsibility, provide positive reinforcement and help children interact and share. The following is a list of Learning Centers that we use at LSS. (Not all centers will be in each classroom, depending on age and appropriateness.)

Art Center: The Art Center provides a multi-sensory experience to help children learn. They expand their understanding of different materials, develop fine-motor skills and learn how to express themselves. The Art Center includes paints, crayons, clay, colored pencils, yarn, natural materials, scissors, stencils, pens, glue, collage materials,paper, and various other materials.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Emotional and Creative

Block Center: This center allows small groups of children to work together, designing and building structures. They must collaborate, cooperate, take turns and problem-solve while learning about sizes, shapes, measurements, distance and other building skills. They also develop eye-hand coordination, logical and mathematical reasoning. They learn about cause and effect, classifications, fractions, order, balance, symmetry and stability. The Block Center includes a variety of types of blocks, vehicles, people and animals.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Social Emotional and Creative

Dramatic Play Center: This center allows children to recreate the social roles they see in their everyday lives. The initial setup is that of a home environment, but as the year goes on, the center evolves. It becomes a post-office, a restaurant, grocery store or office. Dress-up clothes, child-sized furniture and the various prop boxes encourage children to act out fairy tales or role-play real life.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Social, Emotional, Creative

Library/Book Center: Children are encouraged to read and this is the spot to find a great book, either to read alone or with a friend. Cozy pillows and soft furnishings make the Library Center the perfect spot to develop letter recognition, pre-literacy and reading skills.
Skill Development: Mental, Emotional, Social

Manipulative Center: Exploration is essential to the development of mathematical and logical reasoning, and this center provides children with a variety of materials to experience. Some materials are introduced via a lesson and some are simply provided for the children to figure out on their own. The children develop and practice their fine-motor skills and build the computational and problem solving skills. Materials in this center include wooden beads on string, waffle blocks, alphabet blocks, colored blocks, tiles, magnetic letters, legos of varying sizes, puzzles and lacing blocks.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Social, Creative

Math & Science Center: This is the place for children to investigate, explore and experiment - first by encouraging curiosity and then by helping them to find answers to their questions. This center helps children develop reasoning skills, logical thinking, communication skills and an understanding of how things work. Creatures, such as fish, plants or even a bunny, have their home here, magnifying glasses and a variety of natural objects such as shells, acorns, leaves and rocks, nature cards, are available for view and discussion. Sequencing cards, patterns, dice, counting bears, items to sort and written numbers are also provided, along with books and other items that introduce the children to the world of math.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Social, Emotional, Creative

Writing Center: The Writing Center is a place for children to write notes, letters, stories and signs with their newly acquired writing skills. Children use scribbles, lines, pictures and invented spelling to begin to write. Gradually, they incorporate real words with standard spelling. The Writing Center offers pencils, pens, markers, crayons, and a variety of paper. Children are encouraged to express themselves in meaningful ways, and often take their written stories to the Art Center to illustrate them.
Skill Development: Physical, Mental, Social, Emotional, Creative


Our Philosophy

Benefits of Play

Classroom Learning Centers


Parent Advisories

Parent FAQ

Dates the Center is Closed (Holiday Schedule)

Drop Off & Pickup

Bad Weather

Emergency Procedures

Discipline & Behavioral Issues

Special Needs