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Little Pilgrim School

9260 California Avenue SW
Seattle, WA 98136

(206) 932-5600


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Play-Based

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

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  • Tracing paper and other writing instruments
  • A well-stocked bookcase
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
Time & space more

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  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Maps
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

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  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
Physical activity more

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  • A playground with climbing equipment
  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Tricycles
  • Enough room for children to move around and play and a suitable indoor alternative to the outdoor playground on rainy days
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Little Pilgrim School MEET THE STAFF 2006-2007 DEBBIE FLAJOLE is Director of Little Pilgrim School. This is Debbie's fourteenth year as Director. This year she will be in the classroom from time to time but her tasks will be mostly administrative. Debbie received her education degree from Pacific Lutheran University with emphasis on the special needs child. She has worked in the business world as well as in the teaching profession. Debbie spends a lot of time as a volunteer and finds it to be enriching and rewarding. Actively involved in the school her children attended, she has served on the parent board, school board, development committee and the parish council of her church. Debbie, husband Chuck, and children (ages 20 and 25) are West Seattleites. This year son Josh will be a sophomore at Washington State University and daughter Erin is a 2003 graduate from Washington State and is an account executive with Assurant Employee Benefits. Debbie enjoys traveling, especially where there is sunshine. She likes gardening, movies and musicals, Panther Football, teaching Tae Kwon Do, playing with family and spending time with great friends. LORRIE COOK will teach four- year olds on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and two's on Thursday and Friday this year. This will be Lorrie's eighteenth year at LPS. Past teaching experience has been through South Seattle Community College where she earned a preschool teaching certificate and at the West Seattle YMCA where she worked with two through five year olds. She continues to update her education through college courses, workshops and seminars. Volunteer activities have been an important part of Lorrie's life. School, youth sports, church and West Seattle Hi-Yu have benefited from her volunteerism. Lorrie and her husband, Jerry, have three grown daughters, one son-in-law, and four grandchildren. Her interests include traveling, camping, gardening, reading, long walks, spending time with family and friends and, of course, children! LESLIE MINCKLER will teach three- year olds in Room 3 this year. This will be Leslie's sixteenth year at Little Pilgrim School. Leslie is a graduate of Central Washington University and has continuing credits from Pacific Lutheran University and the University of Washington in the area of speech pathology and special education. Leslie has worked as a speech/language Therapist for the Selah and Sumner School Districts. She was also the child/youth Coordinator at Admiral church for four years. Leslie was a Girl Scout leader for 7 years. Leslie, husband Mark, and children Mike age 19, who is a sophomore at Whitman College this year, and Lauren age 18, a senior at West Seattle High School, live in the Fauntleroy area where they stay busy with sports activities, volunteering at the high school, and home projects. They enjoy doing things together as a family. Leslie enjoys gardening, the beach, reading, scrapbooking, knitting, and when time permits, browsing antique shops. She also collects children's books. KATHIE SALONEN will teach the four-year olds in Room 2 this year. This will be Kathie’s fourteenth year as an LPS teacher. Kathie is a graduate of the University of Washington with a degree in speech communications. Family is a high priority for Kathie. Kathie knits for charity and also volunteers at her church where she is currently the Cubbies Director for the Awana Program. Kathie grew up in West Seattle and at Fauntleroy Church. She and her husband, Bob, and two children Bobby and Karianne are West Seattle residents. Both children attended LPS during their preschool years. Always looking for new challenges, Kathie enjoys sewing, needlework of all kinds, and other hands-on projects. She and her family enjoy camping, fishing, bicycling and generally are ready to tackle anything they can do together as a family, whether inside or in the great outdoors. BARBARA SMITH will teach three's on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and two's on Thursday and Friday. Barbara begins her twentieth year at Little Pilgrim School, and she continues to serve as our Head Teacher. She attended Western Washington College and has been actively involved with South Seattle Community College as a parent, student and teacher. Here at Fauntleroy she served as nursery supervisor for three years, developing program and spaces for children under age 3. Over the years Barbara has served as a leader and trainer for Camp Fire, has served on Park Department and community committees and a variety of school organizations. Summers she has worked in child care centers with children, infants to age twelve. Barbara’s interests include exploring new places, gardening, and listening to all types of music. She and husband Gary, have two daughters, a son-in-law, two wonderful grandsons, and two pampered cats. All staff members continue to update their education through reading, workshops and classes.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

We acknowledge that it is the kind of experiences offered and the way adults interact with children that are the most important components of Little Pilgrim School. Because God’s love cannot be confined to a particular place or particular people, we are inclusive of all people in the use of language, and give equal value to sexes, races and nationalities. Current teaching methods and quality materials are used as we work with the children in our care.

We love the child so the child will learn to love. We present ourselves as trustworthy and dependable so the child learns to trust and grow in faith. We accept angry feelings, we seek to understand fears and we forgive errors so the child learns to handle anger, fears and guilt in acceptable ways. We deal with children in this way because it is the way God deals with us. It is the way Christian people live and treat one another.

During early childhood we do very little talking about the gospel. We do not say much about God, Jesus, the Bible and prayer, but seek to establish the foundation for the child’s relationship to the church, the body of Christ and the people of God by letting the child experience, at the preschool level, the Christian life. When the child can use words and ideas easily, conversation about and study of the facts of our Christian faith begins. During early childhood we will build a strong base from which that study of facts can develop.

Approved by Board of CE 1/04

Home-School Connection

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • Fundraise
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Extra staff dedicated to handle separation
  • Parents in classroom early on
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

The teachers are very knowledgeable regarding separation issues and how to deal with them. Separation issues are discussed in detail with the parents at our Parent Information night prior to the beginning of school. We have been extremely successful in handing both child and parent separation anxieties.