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Desert Ridge KinderCare

Michelle Gorman, Center Director

22050 North 44th St. Phoenix AZ 85050
(480) 419-7008 Contact this center

Ages: 6 Weeks to 12 Year-Olds
Open:

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Special Instructions:
Just North of Loop 101 & Tatum Blvd Just south of

Neighborhood:
Tatum north of the 101 freeway

Elementary Schools Bussed To:
Desert Trails ,Wildfire Elementary School

Everything we do is designed for the care and education of each child.  Building relationships between the teachers, parents, and children is a priority for our school.    

  • Accreditation Seal Every Day · Every Child · Excellence · Accreditated · Knowledge Universe
  • NAC Accreditation NAC

Welcome

Welcome to the Desert Ridge KinderCare Learning Center, located on the North of Deer Valley and west of  Tatum Boulvard.  We are excited to meet with you and your family.  Our center offers a curriculum-based program that is designed to develop your whole child.  Our hope is that you have an outstanding experience from the moment you walk into our school and decide to enroll with us.  

Michelle Gorman, Center Director

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Accreditation

Many of our child care centers are accredited by national organizations that require us to meet rigorous early childhood education standards and guidelines for high-quality care and education. Programs that are accredited have demonstrated their commitment to go beyond the state’s minimum licensing requirements to meet and maintain these high standards of quality.

Our Programs

Infant Programs (6 weeks - 1 year)

Babies grow and learn every day. Our goal is to provide a safe and nurturing "home away from home" where babies can explore and make new discoveries. We know that learning through play is extremely valuable at this age and our Early Foundations® Infant program is designed to give babies the skills that will serve as the building blocks for a lifetime of learning.

Toddler Programs (1 – 2 Years)

As toddlers develop friendships, self-esteem, and curiosity, our Early Foundations® Toddler program will help them explore their world in a safe and nurturing environment. Our unique curriculum is based on the philosophy that children learn best through experiences. So each day is filled with fun activities that excite and develop toddlers, giving them the comfort and confidence to speak those first few important words, as well as make their first friends.

Discovery Preschool Programs (2 – 3 Years)

At this age, children are making new discoveries daily. And as two-year olds begin to exert their independence, our Early Foundations® Discovery Preschool program is prepared to open their eyes to a world of learning, sharing, and exploring. Our holistic approach in the classroom engages young minds with a blend of music, art, and movement, as well as the early education fundamentals they'll need as they continue on to preschool.

Preschool Programs (3 – 4 Years)

As preschoolers gain more self-esteem, they may feel ready to take on the world. Our Early Foundations® Preschool program enhances that confidence by providing activities to help children become problem solvers and lifelong learners. Through independent exploration, structured activities, and hands-on learning, children will work on early literacy, math, science, and social studies concepts. A healthy dose of running, jumping, and dancing keeps them active too.

Prekindergarten Programs (4 – 5 Years)

Prekindergartners are preparing for the adventure of a lifetime – school. And our Early Foundations Prekindergarten® program is designed to get them ready by teaching letters and words, math concepts, and valuable social skills. With small group instruction, independent play in an organized atmosphere, and whole-group activities, children will have all the right skills to hop, skip, and jump right into kindergarten.

Summer Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)

Don’t miss out on KinderCare’s Summer of Wonder: Six themed programs that will make summer exciting, educational and tons of fun. Whether your child is in our preschool, Pre-K or school-age programs, all of it is designed to help children learn while soaking up the fun. We offer flexible scheduling options to meet the needs of busy families like yours so we hope to see you there.

Participating Child Care Aware Center

KinderCare has partnered with Child Care Aware® of America in an effort to offer fee assistance for Active Duty military families and solutions to their child care needs when care at a Child Development Center on the installation is not available.

Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program

Cooking

The Cooking Adventures program gives children opportunities to participate in fun, developmentally appropriate cooking experiences. They will learn about recipes, ingredients, cooking vocabulary, and the importance of a healthy diet. The curriculum includes lessons on picnics, pizza, and heart-healthy meals.

Phonics & Reading Adventures

Set your child up for advanced success with literacy through phonics, the study of letters and sounds. Reader books, games, and activity cards help your child understand the basics of vowels and blending syllables, giving him confidence and command of language.

Spanish

Spanish Adventures provides young learners with a foundation for later success with the Spanish language. Music, games, children's Spanish literature, and other tools give children multiple opportunities to hear, practice, and see Spanish language for vocabulary and conversational development. Curriculum includes lessons on greetings, numbers, colors, animals, family, body parts and pets as well as how to get engage conversationally during common scenarios at home, a restaurant, or at the zoo. Qué pasa?

Upcoming Events at our CenterView All Events

  1. Monday August 01, 2016
    1. Spirit Week

      August 1 - 5

  2. Tuesday August 09, 2016
    1. Join us for our Curriculum Night

      Find out how we can work together to give your children a brighter future!

      On August 9th, you’ll see firsthand how we nurture your child’s curiosity. Come meet our wonderful teachers and find out what a day at our center is like. Participate in some of our engaging curriculum activities, like creating modern renditions of pop art or discovering gross and gooey physiology! Curriculum Night gives you the opportunity to see how your child will grow and develop at our center, all while having fun. You’ll also get to talk with other parents who are already a part of our family.

Teachers & Staff

Our center has over 50 years of experience of child care.  All of our teachers have a passion for working and caring for children and it shows through out the center!

  • Michelle Gorman, Center Director

    Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.  -Benjamin Franklin

    Ms. Michelle started her KinderCare career in Colorado Springs, Colorado 14 years ago.  She started as a teacher and then moved up into the management role and has been a Center Director for the past 13 years. Recently, Ms. Michelle and her family have relocated to Phoenix, Arizona. She is very happy to be apart of the Desert Ridge KinderCare family. Ms. Michelle loves to be a team player in the children's development and watching all of the children grow and learn. When she is not at work Ms. Michelle is with her husband, two boys and golden retriver. They love to spend time together outside and exploring all of the different activities that Phoenix has to offer. 

    Year Started:
    2/1/2001
    Tenure:
    15 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    20 Years
    Education:
    Early Childhood Education Degree
  • Samantha Steinkampi

    Samantha Steinkampi, Assistant Director

    I enjoy feeling like a kid and being able to play and laugh with the children. Watching the children who started as Infants and who now have moved from one class to the next has brought such amazing gratitude to me. I look forward to learning new methods of teaching as I advance in my career. Working with children is something that has brought so much meaning to my life and I could not imagine myself in any other field.

    Samantha comes to KinderCare with many years in Early Childhood Education working with children of different ages. She enjoys watching various ways children learn and progress through the years. Since She has been with KinderCare her main focus has been in the Infant rooms before being promoted to the Assistant Director position. Samantha moved from Louisiana to Arizona in 2011 with her son Landon. After getting her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education she hopes to teach 1st or 2nd grade.

    Previous Experience:
    Samantha started babysitting at the age of twelve and continued until she was seventeen, at which point she began working at a daycare center. She worked there for five years with children from birth to three years old. Samantha also worked at a preschool for six months with children ages two to five prior to joining KinderCare.
    Year Started:
    11/28/2011
    Tenure:
    4 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    4 Years
    Education:
    Pursuing Bachelor's of Science Degree in Elementary Education
  • Ms. Meibol

    Ms. Meibol, Discovery Preschool Classroom

    The enjoyment the children have when they can actually repeat and apply what they have learned is so rewarding for me!

    Since moving to the United States from Mexico seven years ago, I  have been working on English as a second language.  My husband and I have started a family and we have a beautiful daughter.  I received my Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and have many years of working with young children.  I am considering furthering my degree in Special Educatio at some time as well.
    Over the year I have been with KinderCare, I have a daily goal to come every day to my classroom and teach something new.  I know that the experiences, exploring, and the children expressing themselves at this age will last them their entire life.  That is why it is so important to me to do my best at being a part of their development at this age.

    Year Started:
    3/11/2014
    Tenure:
    2 Years
  • Ms. Lorrin

    Ms. Lorrin, Discovery Preschool Classroom 2

    It is a huge sense of accomplishment when I see children growing and learning so much.

    I know that being a Phoenix native is unusual; and many people think that loving a classroom of two-year olds is as well!  My son, now 18 months, isn't far from this age, so all of the time I get to spend with this age is so beneficial and gives me tons of experience.
    After four years in early childhood, I am continually amazed at how much they can and do learn.  Even at this age, I enjoy the challenge of being creative in what we do and finding the many ways to teach and reintroduce the same concept, repetition is so important for them.  Watching their interactions together, I see friendships develop and their play becomes filled with imagination is like watching a flower grow and bloom.

    Previous Experience:
    Lorrin previously worked as a CNA.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Mean Soup
    Year Started:
    9/11/2014
    Tenure:
    1 Year
    Years in ECE industry:
    5 Years
  • Ms. Emma, Infant 1 Classroom

    I love watching the children learn and grow.

    I moved to America from Tehran, Iran in 1966 and lived in New York for many years. I have been married for 34 years and have 4 boys who are all grown. We moved to Arizona in 1999 where I continued my work in early childhood. The first years of a child's life are so important and although they won't remember me when they are older I know I have a postive impact on their lives.

    Previous Experience:
    Emma previously worked for Arizona Republic for 1 year and for an elementary school for 3.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Cinderella
    Year Started:
    6/19/2013
    Tenure:
    3 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    Since 2003
  • Ms. Raquel, Infant 2 Classroom

    Thank you to all the parents who allow me the opportunity to teach their children!

    I was born in Mexico and moved to Arizona after I married my wonderful husband. I love traveling with him and trying new food along the way. In my spare time I like to hike and organize my home. The most important part of my job is the children's safety and learning. Since starting in 2015 I have watched so many students grow and develop their skills. My motivation comes from knowing that everyday I will receive so much more than I give.

    Previous Experience:
    Raquel has previously worked as a nanny.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    There's a Wocket in My Pocket by Dr. Seuss
    Year Started:
    5/4/2015
    Tenure:
    1 Year
    Years in ECE industry:
    4 Years
    Education:
    Bachelors in Theology
  • Ms. Umalatha (Latha), Infant Classroom

    I like to see their happy faces when they learn new things.

    I moved from Indiana to Arizona in 2011. I am married and have a three year old son and a two year old daughter. Although I have only been with KinderCare a short time, I have learned so much. This experience has given me new skills and ideas to implement with my own children. I love working with the little babies. It is amazing to see how smart they are at such a young age.

    Previous Experience:
    Latha previously worked at Boulder Creek Elementary.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    First Words
    Year Started:
    3/28/2016
    Years in ECE industry:
    Since 2016
    Education:
    Bachelors in Computer Science
  • Ms. Valerie

    Ms. Valerie, Preschool Classroom

    I love the experience of children expressing interest and excitement when learning something new.

    I have three grown daughtes who I still get to spend a lot of time with. I enjoy walking, hiking, poetry, and scrapbooking. My career started after my studies and I have had the priviledge of working with both preschool and prek. For the last three years my main focus has been preschool. The children show such an interest and excitement when learning something new. My favorite part of the day is when I get to spend that one-on-one time with each child.

    Previous Experience:
    Valerie has previous experience as a Program Specialist.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Where the Sidewalk Ends
    Year Started:
    1/23/2012
    Tenure:
    4 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    15 Years
    Education:
    Associates in Early Childhood Education
  • Ms. Marie

    Ms. Marie, Toddler Classroom

    The joy the children bring and the sense of accompolishment I get is so rewarding.

    My experience in early childhood has grown to over 12 years and it all started after a high school aptitude test!  I was born in Sweden and I can say a child's needs and development is the same no matter where they are born.  I have been with KinderCare since 2011 and the experiences as well as the many, many wonderful opportunities to witness children learning and growing before my very eyes has been fantastic.

    Year Started:
    5/16/2011
    Tenure:
    5 Years
  • Ms. Jenny, Toddler Classroom

    I love watching the children's minds expand when learning.

    I'm from a small town in Northwest Indiana. My son Austin and I moved to Arizon in 2004 to be closer to family. I met my husband here and have been happily married for 3 years. I graduated from high school in 1999 and started teaching right after. I have been working for KinderCare since 2005 at multiple locations. Most of my experience has been with one year olds. A lot of people might find it challenging, but I love how full of life they are.

    Previous Experience:
    Jenny has worked in special education.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish
    Year Started:
    3/23/2016
    Years in ECE industry:
    14 Years
  • Ms. Alyssa, Discovery Preschool Classroom

    If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life.

    I was born and raised in Long Island, NY. I am married and have two wonderful little boys. I moved to Arizona in 2013 to pursue a better life for me and my family. Some of my favorite things to do are hiking, swimming, and other outdoor activities. Working with children has always been my passion and I find it to be the most rewarding job.

    Previous Experience:
    Alyssa previously worked as a nanny.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly
    Year Started:
    9/11/2014
    Tenure:
    1 Year
    Years in ECE industry:
    3 Years
  • Ms. Kate

    Ms. Kate, Preschool Classroom

    I strongly believe that young children need to feel secure and unconditionally loved. If I am with a child when the parent cannot be I feel a great responsibility to fill that position the best I possibly can. I have always had a special connection with children and found it to be my joy and passion to make them feel individually special.

    Ms. Kate has been providing loving childcare services for over 22 years. After her first son was born she didn't want to leave him so she offered childcare services in her home to mothers who needed or wanted a career. Knowing those mothers were having the same concerns and heartache moved her in providing a loving, fun and educational care for children. She stayed with these families from infancy through Kindergarten. They still have close friendships to this day. Ms. Kate has three sons. She enjoys spending time with them and helping them through school and college. She also enjoys gardening and reading. Ms. Kate has also spent the last eighteen years as a Special Events Planner for a political fundraising and events in Phoenix lobbying firm.

    Year Started:
    3/13/2013
    Tenure:
    3 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    22 Years
  • Ms. Kristina, Preschool Classroom

    A person's a person no matter how small.

    I recently moved to Phoenix with my husband and two dogs. My husband and I were so excited to welcome our first child in March!
    In my free time I enjoy exploring my new state and playing games with my son. I started teaching right after graduating college and couldn't imagine doing anything else! I love the smiles in the mornings and hugs at the end of the day. My favorite parts of the day though are art and music!

    Previous Experience:
    Kristina has been a ballet teacher for 9 years, worked for Sandcastle and College Park Learning Centers in FL as a preschool and toddler teacher, and Adventures Learning Center in MI as the lead toddler teacher.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Oh the Places You'll Go - Dr. Seuss
    Year Started:
    5/16/2016
    Years in ECE industry:
    6 Years
    Education:
    Bachelors Degree in Communications (theater)
  • Ms. Jessica, Prekindergarten Classroom

    I love to see the excitement on their faces when they learn something new.

    I am originally from San Clemente, CA. I moved here when I was 15. Although I miss it, Arizona is where I call home. I have a son who is  and the center of my world. Going kyaking at the lake is our favorite thing to do. Since joining KinderCare I have ahd the opportunity to work with all ages, finding my fit in the PreK class. The best part of my day is working on an experiment or craft and watching as their imaginations run wild.

    Previous Experience:
    Jessica previously worked for AAA and Bird World.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    The Very Hungry Caterpillar
    Year Started:
    10/28/2015
    Years in ECE industry:
    Since 2015
  • Ms. Katlynn, Floater

    Teachers who love teaching, teach children to love learning.

    I have been working with children since I was 15 years old and have loved every minute of it. I enjoy watching children learn and grow and playing a role in their development. I will be graduating with an associates degree this December from Scottsdale Community College, and plan to transfer to university in the spring for my Bachelors and Masters degrees. In my free time I enjoy reading, writing, and playing with my puppies Blaze and Bentley.

    Previous Experience:
    Katlynn has experience as a nanny, daycare worker, and teacher's assistant.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Fox & Sox
    Year Started:
    5/4/2016
    Years in ECE industry:
    Since 2015
  • Ms. Linnea, Floater

    A person's a person, no matter how small.

    I am originally from Hawaii, and have also lived in Alaska, Washington, and now Arizona. One day I hope to travel the world. I have a son who is 13 and a daughter who is 2. I love to spend time with my kids and family. Especially my oldest because he is 13 going on 30 and thinks he is too cool for mom. I've been working for KinderCare for about 10 years now (I took a break to stay home with my daughter). Early childhood has always been my dream. Children learn so much in their early years and I love that I get to play a major role in that development.

    Previous Experience:
    Linnea worked as a nanny and has been with KinderCare for many years.
    Favorite Children's Book:
    Horton Hears a Who
    Year Started:
    9/17/2015
    Years in ECE industry:
    14 Years

July 2016 Events

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  1. Monday July 04, 2016
    1. Independence Day - Center Closed

About Our Center

Welcome to the Desert Ridge KinderCare Learning Center, located on the North of Deer Valley and west of Tatum Boulevard. We are excited to meet with you and your family. Our center offers a curriculum-based program that is designed to develop the whole child. Our hope is that you have an outstanding experience from the moment you walk into our school and decide to enroll with us.

Languages Spoken at Our Center

  • American Sign Language
  • Spanish

Meals & Menus

Meals Served

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • PM Snack

Holidays Observed

We observe the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • President's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • 4th of July
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Day after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Day

Please note that because holidays observed may vary between centers, please be sure to check with your Center Director for specific closures.

Health and Safety

Our school has a keypad entry, the parents receive the entry code once they are enrolled with us. If anyone other than the parent picks the child up, they must provide us with a Government issued photo ID. All of our staff members have their current Fingerprint Clearance Card, CPR, First Aid and TB test.

Playground Safety Tips

When you are out at the park and supervising children on play equipment look for age-appropriate equipment and hazards, such as rusted or broken equipment and dangerous surfaces. Areas around tall equipment should have a shock absorbing material of sand, woo chips, mulch or shredded rubber. Teach children that pushing, shoving or crowding while on the playground can be dangerous.

Here at KinderCare we do daily checks BEFORE we allow children to play outside. Children get so excited when they can run, swing, slide...it's so good for them. So go out often...and enjoy a safe time!

At KinderCare, what families say about us means a lot. Read below some of the great experiences our families have had with us.

Share Your Story
If you have a story about your experience at KinderCare, please share your story with us.

Our family is from Mexico but English is our first language. Benjamin knows a few words in Spanish; Sophia is still learning to talk. The reason I am bringing this to you is because of the new curriculum in Preschool and Prekindergarten that includes so much Spanish. Ben is rapidly learning words and short phrases…and he is loving it because Ms. Kate and Ms. Chris make it so much fun for everyone. As for Sophia in your Toddler classroom, she has Ms. Olivia speaking Spanish to her and Ms. Season is teaching the class American Sign Language. So she can speak another language too! We love it here because we know our children are in the very best place. Thank you so much!

- Mother

Dear Alene,
What parent can't wait for that exciting day when his or her child starts reading! But never in our wildest dreams would we have thought it was our turn already. Victoria is three (about to turn four) and so excited for her birthday. I asked her teachers, Ms. Carla and Ms. Kate to please provide a list of the children's names so we could put invitations to the big day in the cubbies at school. Victoria brought the list home and handed to me. I was sliently reading it when she asked for it and said she could tell me all the kids names. Well she proceeded to read every name on the list…first and last names mind you! We were absolutely blown away! Talk about chills. She was so proud and so was grandma when we talked to her. KinderCare staff has always displayed so much care for our daughter and the education is the best. Thank you for all you do!

- Mother
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Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and though the various training opportunities in the community.

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