Good Shepherd Stories

You’re Invited…to help children feel welcome

How Little Blessings helped provide a safe, encouraging and social environment for one family

When COVID-19 hit in 2020, parents Amber and Nathan Nelson-Smith were desperate. After 6 months of isolation from COVID-19 with their kids, they found out their twins, Amos and Lucca, would be entering 4K virtually.  Amber understood safety concerns but was worried no one would be there to guide them through virtual school.

However, their son Leighton was already enrolled at Little Blessings Preschool.  Unlike the school their twins attended, Little Blessings would be open in the Fall.  The parents asked whether there was room for all three children.  There was. Safety policies and procedures were shared, and the risks were explained.  Amber and Nathan felt lucky to find a place for their children. “Little Blessings made a plan to help us parent well and have our kids be safe and in a social environment.” Amber said.

Later that school year, the twins were able to attend 4K in person at their local school. But it would conflict with their days at Little Blessings. However, the family found Little Blessings was flexible with their needs.  The twins ended up at 4K at their local school two days a week, and at Little Blessings one day a week.  Leighton attended on the same schedule he always had.  The flexibility of having the twins attend Little Blessings one day a week was a huge gift to the Nelson-Smith family.

Little Blessings has provided a play-based and faith-based preschool to families in Madison and Verona at Good Shepherd since 1999.

Rooted in a child centered, play-based approach, the goal is for each unique child to best learn through play in an enriching and loving environment. Each child is taught to think creatively and critically so they may be successful in an ever-changing world. Our philosophy is based on meeting the social, emotional, developmental, and educational needs of each child. During the pandemic, because of the closeness of our community, Little Blessings was also able to adapt and meet the changing needs of parents like the Nelson-Smith’s without compromising our goal.

“We love because God first loved us,” 1 John 4:19. At Little Blessings Preschool, love is the foundation of the school’s work.  Love helps us feel gracious, kind, caring, valued, and accepted.  And the staff works hard to pass those values to the children in their classroom every day.

Your generosity to Good Shepherd makes it possible to have sustained excellence through the dedication of people like the staff at Little Blessings Preschool, including Director Devora Ballo. As a faith community, we are transforming your good gifts into ways to invite all to fully take part in worshipping our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Thank you for the ways in which you make this transformation in the lives of members like Nelson-Smith’s possible.