Joanna X., CPA
My name is Joanne X. and my son, Jayden, is in kindergarten in Legacy Montessori School [formerly CCMS] and has been with LMS since he was 3 1/2.
We chose LMS because it is both a Christian and a Montessori school. We had one year experience with another Christian school which is also well known and a nice preschool. However, what attracted us to come back when Jayden reached preschool age was LMS’s pursuit of excellence in both academic and biblical teaching. The quality of its staff is another significant reason for our coming back.
Jayden was shy before LMS. He was not comfortable to stay in an environment without me. After enrollment, he struggled with separation anxiety for a few months. During that time, Ms. Bianca and Mr. Ryan patiently and lovingly helped Jayden and directed him to do some “special” tasks, such as being Mr. Ryan’s helper to set up classroom and get snacks ready for other children. He followed Mr. Ryan around and always listened to Ms. Bianca’s gentle requests. I can never forget how Ms. Bianca prayed with me for Jayden, outside the classroom early in the morning. The genuine love and care from Jayden’s teachers truly turned him around. He is now a happy and confident leader in his classroom. Praise the Lord for leading us to LMS.
We chose LMS because of these two elements in its program. Based on the experience of having both of our children going to LMS (my ten year old is a CCMS/LMS alumni), I am very pleased with how well LMS put these two elements together in their programs. The children start out their day with bible storis and songs. The bible teaching does not stop there, but rather continues throughout the day, through prayers with children, discipline based on biblical principles and other interaction with children. My son has learned so much about the bible and God. I even have his Sunday school teachers and Awana leaders telling me how amazed they are with Jayden’s knowledge on bible stories. Also because of the teaching of prayer, Jayden is now a strong praying warrior. He prays every day and feels comfortable leading prayer both at home and with friends.
LMS provides a variety of programs and I love them all. My favorites are the faith-based Christmas and Easter programs, weekly summaries, field trips, citrus garden and volunteer programs. The two holiday programs are always something we look forward to. Weekly summaries help me informed as to what my son learns in school. It also gives me clue to his occasional out-of-blue questions. Knowing what he has been learning in school helps me understand the rationale behind his questions. I also love the Moms-in-Touch prayer meetings, even though I can’t participate yet because of scheduling issues. But knowing that a group of moms are on their knees in a room next to my son’s classroom praying of his safety and the school, reminds me again how blessed we are to be in LMS.
In all these years that we have been with LMS, we have experienced different staff members. They come in different personalities and styles, but all have one thing in common: a love for God and our children. They truly care for the kids and love them dearly.
I love how sometimes Jayden would say things that just remind me to use gentle words and voice. It has got to come from his teachers. Way to go with the positive discipline and encouraging words!
The atmosphere in LMS as a whole is loving and professional. Ms. Katie as a director, sets the tone for the school and staff. I admire her persistence in faith-based teaching by starting each day with bible study and prayer with her staff. She sets a wonderful example about the importance of prayer. This in turn is instilled in the children. Ms. Carol is the perfect administrative assistant. She is detail-oriented and always very calm. Both of them are friendly and helpful, of course.
I see “excellence” implemented in the design of the program and careful selection of the staffs. The program is balanced with both academic and biblical teaching. Jayden is constantly challenged to expand his comfort zone. He is also encouraged to do his very best work.
Diana S., Owner of Kumon, Rancho Bernardo
…his teacher said she is scrambling to find new material to challenge Parker. She is using some that they have never needed to use before because no one was as advanced and as eager to learn. And she is needing to go to the elementary class to get some material for him. Lauren U. is also in Parker’s class. The teacher asked about LMS because she could see that both Parker and Lauren are both pretty advanced compared to other kids in their class. This is a wonderful compliment to LMS, you’ve done a great job, Ms. Katie!
Richard E. & Angie E., Senior Consulting Partner: The Ken Blanchard Companies, Alpha Advisor, Alpha USA
Bethany loves LMS and enjoys going to school every day. Bethany has improved so much in her behavior, i.e. good listening skills, self-control and obedience. Bethany has made many friends at LMS both her age, younger and older.
Academically, Bethany has improved significantly in reading, comprehension, writing, and math.
Learning the word of God and Christian values help our children to learn and appreciate God’s love, how to love others, love ourselves, and to know the difference between right and wrong. Teachers at LMS teach children how to interact with one another with love and respect based on God’s word. The Montessori philosophy emphasize on developing children to achieve excellence in a practical systematic way that is full of creativity and fun. The combination of both Christian values and Montessori philosophy, enable our children to grow strong spiritually and academically.
Wonderful teaching materials and resources are used for each individual at different levels accordingly. Each child is given practical opportunities to improve, whether it is their strengths or in areas where they need improvement. For example, Bethany was not particularly good at reading, so they developed a system with great resources for her to touch, to play and to learn how to read and spell at a pace that was not pressured but organized. She now enjoys reading books at a grade 2 level, and she had so much fun learning how to read at LMS.
Teachers’ weekly summaries are very detailed and extremely helpful for us to learn about children’s academic progress and social development. I often read it fully, in order to work with the teachers to help Bethany to reflect her studies at home. Bethany loves telling me her highlight daily and every little thing that happens at school. I volunteer in helping the classroom and the office sometimes. It has been a huge blessing to be a volunteer at LMS, as you work in unity with the teachers in your child’s growth. To be on the same page with LMS, gives us clear understanding of their creative strategies that LMS desires to establish for our children and we, as parents, are able to support our children more effectively. It’s easier for children to achieve excellence and confidence in an assured and secure way, when parents support the school in any measure, big or small. My child was always so happy when I stayed and help other kids. Moms-in-Touch is a great way to socialize with other Moms. It’s a joyful blessing to pray for your own child and other children, and other Moms praying for your children. And we also pray for all the teachers and staff at school. I believe and also witnessed that the more we involve God, the more peace and joy our children have at school.
The teaching staff at LMS is very hard working, dedicated, friendly and Godly. Bethany is in room 2, and she loves all her teachers Miss Shay, Miss Beverley and Miss Mercy. They have taught Bethany how to listen effectively, how to respect others and how to have fun in learning. Their faith in action also taught Bethany how to love God, love herself and love one another with patience and compassion. It’s my dream come true for Bethany to be in a school that is full of respect and self worth.
The overall atmosphere at LMS is relaxed but organized; friendly and professional. The Administrative Assistant and the Director are very friendly. Ms Katie is wonderful and really believes in making a difference in our children’s lives at such an impressionable way.
LMS effectively combines Christian values and the principles of Montessori which is essential for a child to develop in a balanced way.
Rick D., Software Engineer
When I met with the Director and her staff, I was very upfront about how our son had been a preschool delinquent at his last school because of some hitting and not listening and had been asked to leave after only five weeks. I didn’t want to run into the same situation again so I made sure they were aware that he needed to know who was boss. Once that was established to him, he’d behave as expected, for the most part.
They assured me that they had experience with this and not to worry; they’d partner with me in resolving any behavioral problems that would come up without asking him to leave.
Our son started there right after that meeting and had none of the trouble adjusting that he had at the last school. This had everything to do with the staff. They have proven to be very skilled at their profession… the office staff and teachers make going to this school joyful.
Some of the things I really like about this school are that they take the children on field trips occasionally, one of their daily circle times is devoted to Christian children’s songs and Bible teaching, and the teachers give you progress reports every quarter.
When our son has had issues, his teacher gives me a report and we come up with a unified front to resolve the issue. I couldn’t be happier with our choice.
A Teacher’s Testimony
Shay Newland is one of the lead teachers at LMS. She is known for her experience in the education field and her passion for worship.
Ms. Newland was born in San Luis Obispo, California. She and her family moved to San Diego in 1982. Shay participated in the child development Program at Palomar College and taught traditional preschool for seven years. In 1998 she attended Biola University and graduated in 2001. She received her teaching credential in 2002. From 2003-2006 she taught Kindergarten and Third Grade at Horizon Prep. She started her Montessori career in CCMS/LMS in 2007. In that same year, she also received Montessori training at The Montessori Teacher’s College. She enjoys spending time with her family: her mother, father, sister, brother-in-law, niece and two nephews. She enjoys photography, scrapbooking, listening to music and singing.
Ms. Shay’s Testimony
My name is Shay Newland and I am a lead teacher in Room 2. Some of my daily responsibilities are to plan and give lessons in all Montessori disciplines, along with planning and teaching Bible, Theme, and Calendar circles. The vision of Legacy Montessori School is to build generations of young achievers who are passionate for God. This vision is woven throughout all areas of the classroom. We are building young achievers who are passionate for God through the curriculum, work time and even playtime. Each child is encouraged to do their best and be their best, with each child learning to be the person God created him/her to be. Each day children are taught about God and His great love for them. I long for them to personally experience His love and in turn for them to share that love with everyone in their path. As the children are on the playground, they are given opportunities to love one another just as Christ has asked us to. They learn sharing, cooperation, how to be a friend, how to wait patiently, how to resolve conflicts, and many other godly characteristics.
During work time, I encourage and help them to do their best. I want to instill in each child the Biblical values of Colossians 3:23-24: “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord, rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” The children learn how to persevere and keep trying when things are not easy. They work at their own pace and each day the lessons are individualized for the level that each child is at. Since we know each child and what he/she is capable of, we have high expectations for our students. We know that children will excel and reach our goals for them.
This is my third year teaching at LMS and I am impressed with how each child grows, not only in academics, but spiritually as well. They daily gain knowledge in the curriculum, but more importantly their knowledge of God grows daily. It is such a joy to hear the questions they ask about God, His nature and character. Their minds are like sponges, soaking up everything they hear and learn. There is no greater joy or blessing than to hear the children praying to God and singing songs of worship to Him. The students are learning the importance of following God, serving Him, obeying Him, and loving Him. When they graduate, I am confident their foundation is firm in both academics and in God.
Our school strives to be set apart as a school of excellence. As a result, there are expectations placed on the staff as well as the students to reach our goal of an excellent school. Each day, children do their Challenging Work first. This means that they start their work time with either Math or Reading. We make sure each child is setting up their work properly. The children must show completed work to a teacher for check off. If the work is not complete or needs to be fixed, we gently have them re-do or correct their work. One of the great things about the Montessori work is that there is a control of error built in. When a child completes a work, they self-check it first. The work will let the child know if there is an error and a child is able to try again and will then be able to successfully re-do the work. Every day we encourage each child to do better than they did the day before. They are not in competition with others, but strive to be better than themselves the day before. Lesson plans are done on an individual basis so each child can work at his or her own pace, in a way that is appropriate and challenging.
In daily Bible circles, the children are taught about God, His character and precepts. The learning does not stop when the Bible circle is over. Throughout the day the students are reminded of what the Bible says, how God wants us to treat others, and most importantly of how much God loves them. They are reminded to stop and think before they do or say something. They are taught how to resolve conflicts in a peaceful, loving and godly way. I want them to know who they are, and to love all the unique and wonderful ways God made them!
By the time children have been at LMS for three years, they are ready to graduate and go to Elementary school. They will have a solid foundation in all areas of the curriculum. They will have a good work ethic with the ability to focus and complete the task at hand in a timely manner. They will have received an overview of the entire Bible with a focus on the stories, characters, and the life of Jesus, God and His plan and purpose for “me.” They will be fluent readers. They will be able to add and subtract. They will have been introduced to multiplication, division and fractions.
Teachers often have many victorious stories about their students. At the beginning of one of the school years, there was a child who would overreact and be overly emotional over things. Instead of using words to express what he was feeling or needed, the child would run away screaming and crying and then would hide. I helped him calm down and then model for him how to talk about what was happening. I would be loving, patient and firm and help him realize that words are powerful and can be used to help him resolve problems and express his emotions. It took a while, but eventually the child was able express his emotions and needs instead of simply crying and running away.
I truly enjoy working at LMS. The environment is loving, supportive, and fun. The staff is unified; the director is supportive and helpful, offering a fresh set of eyes to help us grow as professionals. I really appreciate the teamwork of all staff that helps make everything run smoothly and more efficient. The children are a blessing and a joy to teach. The parents and families are warm, friendly, and supportive. It is a joy to have freedom to teach about God, and it is a tremendous joy to instill His love into each child.