Winter 2014 - Precious Lamb Preschool

Breaking the cycle of homelessness,
one child at a time
Winter 2014
Mailing Address:
Precious Lamb Preschool
Tony’s Story
Precious Lamb families experience homelessness that is often unseen. Tucked
away in shelters while pursuing education, housing, counseling, healing, and
confidence, our families are courageously breaking the cycle of homelessness.
We see their strides daily, and the impact of time spent in the classroom with
our top notch teachers. Here is Tony’s story as told by Ms. Gaby:
2005 Palo Verde Ave. PMB 301
Long Beach, CA 90815
Tony was 2, and angry when he first came to the classroom. He was very physical and biting a lot. His language skills were very low, and his attention span
was unusually short. He rarely played with the other kids and instead, played
next to them.
We [teachers] noticed that he was very tired throughout the day. We knew he
needed extra attention, comfort, and rest. He was sharing a bed with his mom,
older sister, younger brother and brand new baby sister, who, according to Tony,
cried all night.
"I had the pleasure to attend the recent Precious Lamb annual fundraiser
event and had invited four other couple friends of mine to join Nancy and I at
our table. It was such a beautiful and emotional evening with speakers whose
passion for this great charity was so obvious. My friends were most impressed and expressed a desire to support the cause. I know I left with a wonderful feeling that my donation and those given by my friends went to such a
well deserved charity." ~Randy Gordon: Chamber of Commerce President
THANK YOU everyone who attended “Those Who Dream”, our 8th Annual Celebration
and Fundraising Banquet on October 16th, and helped us exceed our goal of raising
Special Thanks to our event sponsors
Anita G. Inc., Mike & Natalie Arvesen, Randy Beck, Lou & Jayne Bellanca, Blue
Windows, Scott & Suzanne Borland, Charles & Karen Brennan, Ryan & Amy
Brown, Dedan Brozino, Deborah's Daughters, Jim & Judy Clark, Ed & Cricket
Clarke, Eric Clarke & Sarah Stayer-Clarke, Deep Roots Consulting, Jeff & Anitra
Dempsey, John Freeborn, Gregg's Master Plumbing, Jamie Gronowski, JetBlue,
King's Church, Don Knabe, Randy Gordon & Nancy Becker, Joyce Clark & Ken
Douthit, Jack & Brenda McDowell, Marv & Diane Morrison, National Charity
League, Jrs., Dennis & Chris Neal, Sam Pablo, Parkcrest Church, Eugene
Peace, Lori Peck, Scott & Leza Reed, Restoration Church, Harry & Maria
Saltzgaver, Warren & Phyllis Spielmann, John & Charlene Steurer, Adam &
Stephanie Taylor, Don & Debra Voss, Ron & Carole Webb, Dan & Michelle
Wendell, Bud & Barbara Wille, Bob & Karen Wissmann
One morning Tony came in very reserved. As soon as he approached
the dramatic play area, he started taking toys from his friends.
Each teacher took turns sitting next to him at the snack table, initiating friendly conversation to help create safety and transition into his
day. Eventually, he sat with me to read, and asked for book after
book. He stayed on my lap for fifteen minutes, until he announced,
“I’m done!”. He ended up having a really good day.
Our unique 1:4 ratio allows our teachers to give the extra comfort,
time and attention our kids need. Through our partnership with Safe
Families for Children, Tony and his 4 year old sister Tanya were able to stay with a host family for a few weeks
while Tony’s mom got settled with the newborn. When Tony and Tanya returned home with their mom, the host
family continued to support Tony’s family after his dad got out
of jail.
Today, Tony is calmer, happier, and smiles easily. He wants to
cuddle more, and sit on the teacher’s laps. He enjoys stories
and speaks more confidently. He talks about his daddy giving
him baths and doing his hair. He is able to build relationships
with his friends and play with them without tension rising so
much. Now when Tony takes a play stethoscope from a
friend, it is to playfully listen to her heart.
“I don’t think I’d be a preschool teacher anywhere else!”
Breaking the cycle of homelessness takes the collective strengths of a well
synergized team. Meet one of the women behind the magic.
Name: Natalie Freitag
Position: Lead Teacher, Toddler Room ages 2-3
Family/Interests: Celebrating two years of marriage to Jared! Loves reading,
outdoors and hiking
Skills: creative storytelling that keeps two year olds still; teaching kids to respect nature (including people) and the world around them; cooking activities to help kids learn about what food is and where it comes from
Heart for Precious Lamb: As an intern, I fell in love with Precious Lamb and
what we do. Knowing kids are experiencing what they’re experiencing, I
want their starting out years to be a little easier with people who want to
show them love because I know the world is going to be hard for these kids.
I don’t think I’d be a pre-school teacher anywhere else.
Highlights: When new kids enroll, it’s amazing to watch the older kids take on leadership roles. The other day,
Joe was having troubles getting his shoes on and I asked Tina to help him. She was eager and has since then
stepped up to be a class leader. The other teachers and I notice that helping others helps the older ones stay
engaged, feel valued and noticed, and take ownership of the class.
I love getting to see the kids just be kids. Like during our
summer water days when the kids got to run around in
the sprinklers, I realized that they don’t have lawns to run
around in. It was really fun to do that together.
I’m encouraged when we go through the Feelings Chart
with the kids. One little guy who was recently reunited
with his mom after being in foster care for a year, kept
pointing to the angry face on the chart and saying, “I’m
mad!”. We see it in his behavior, but it was great to see
him at such a young age recognize the feeling and use
his words to express it.
Special thanks to those who have recently given their time and/or items: Sandy Moons, Kevin Davis, Brenda
McDowell, Scott Reed, Jim Clark, Shannon Shondeff, Vanessa Cobb, Lori David Jones, Marilee Stefenhagen, Becky Kovacs,
MariLou Morrelli, Diane Todd, Joe Rodriguez, Romany Morm, Amy Brown, Kristin Waters, Christiana Williams, Aaron Clarke,
Jeanette Cheng, Jenice Clarke, Kim Robinson, Barbara McKeen, Lindsay Hoogendam, Maya Oliver, Lindsay Yeats, Olivia Barajas,
Sam Ilhendfeldt, Cynthia Trotter, Samantha Lapp, Diane Todd, Shonia Travis, Holly Thraves, Mary Leeger, Emma Hambly,
Danielle Hamlet, Hillary Estes, Lisa Carey-Navarette, Melvin Cobb, Payton Cobb, Tim Culling, Jared Freitag, Megan Johnson,
Brigette Cahill, Colleen Barger, Emily Morrison, Marilyn Riordan, Leza Reed, Prudy Carter, Leigh Verdure, Cindy Urzua, Loree
Van Gelder, Kathi Eyserbeck, Sue Sheby, Renice Small, Kamryn Cobb, Lucia Robles, Valley Christian High School, The Garden
Church, Long Beach Christian Fellowship, Cornerstone Church, Carrie Schreiner, Lacey Maxwell, Cassidy & Riley, Troops 4463,
2003 & 1783, Terry Clark, Sheila Johnson, Allison Bellows, Brigette Cahill, Mark Rogers, Lloyd & Caleb Koch, Stephanie Taylor,
Blue Windows, Gardena Valley Baptist, Westerly School, Robin Jones, Alex Cobb
In the News
"A child's early years profoundly shape the rest of
their lives, presenting the most critical window of
time to set them on a path towards future success,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary Libby Doggett. "America is at a tipping point for early education, and with recent new investments, California is
helping lead the way. If we expand investments in
high quality early learning, we carve out a brighter
future for our children and for our country."
PRNewswire-USNewswire. (2014, October 21). LAUP Co-Hosting Early Learning Forum
Featuring U.S. Sec. of Education Arne Duncan. The Business Journals.
Retrieved from
Barbara Wille, From: Carleda Hutton ~ Pastor Steve Williams, From: Chris Bohannon ~
Baby Mariam Evans (born on 4/28/14), From: Marilyn Paulson ~ Billy Grow, From: Chris Bohannon ~ Happy 92nd Birthday to the Best Mom Ever, Dottie Burkhardt, From: Ed & Cricket Clarke ~
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Happy Birthday, From: The Cobb Crew ~ Herminia Zains (Mom), From: Richard & Esther Arvesen
~ Happy Birthday Jaci, From Adam Anderson ~ Gustav Jabs, From: Ronald & Ruth Kusel ~
My Mom, Barbara Bohannon, From: Chris Bohannon ~ Brenda Kelly, From: Kathy Shaw ~ Ernest
E. Edmonds. From: Joyce Edmonds ~ My Father, Howard Doty, From: Jean & Phil Beard ~ Audrey
Smigay, From: Jayne A. Lane, John Anke, From: Pam & Walter Anke ~ Bonnie Wedel, my dear
sister, From: Don & Linda West ~ John & Betty Rank, From: L. Fulton ~ Jean Nelson, From:
Wendell & Eileen Oien ~ Sharon Marie Cavanaugh, From: Sue Ellen Warren ~ Bill Dyson, From:
Cara Dyson
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