Our Mission

To guide each child in discovering his or her potential through creative and educational experiences in the natural world, their community, and a vibrant, unique learning environment.

Our Approach

Our program offers a hands-on approach to learning in a variety of environments that embrace the beauty, nature, and culture that is found in Muskoka. Our centres, located in Gravenhurst, ON, are at the heart of a thriving community of arts & natural surroundings. We embrace the culture of our town, our community and the families we care for by offering a wide variety of age-appropriate studies within our programs. 

We encourage each child to discover their talents and interests while providing opportunities for them to grow their independence and develop their abilities in all aspects of learning. Our outdoor classrooms connect children with the natural world in an immersive and interactive environment. Our indoor environments harness the Muskoka charm with natural elements throughout the facility, and different ways of exploring the pedagogical expectations of an early learning centre. 

Two Great Locations

Wharfside
420 Muskoka District Rd 169
Gravenhurst, ON P1P 1R2
Brock Street
180 Brock St. 
Gravenhurst, ON P1P 1X2

Our Educators

Anya & Rob Kerr - Founders
As parents to 3 children, family is the centre of the Kerr's lives. It is also the inspiration to start an early learning program that is so much more than what you might expect from child care. Anya and Rob have combined their talents in creating an environment that embraces the Muskoka charm and natural beauty around the centre. For years, it has been a dream of Rob's to begin a child care centre where families can find comfort in knowing that their children's days are full of adventure, education, and excitement. Utilizing his skills in carpentry, construction, and entrepreneurship, and combining with Anya's experience in child care roles and designing various arts, dance, theatre, music, farming and outdoor programs for children, Stepping Stone Early Learning Academy Ltd. has come to fruition in the heart of Muskoka. Backed by a qualified team of knowledgeable and experienced staff, Anya & Rob have created a truly unique environment for early learning where children can explore their natural surroundings, embrace their personal interests, and thrive as they learn and grow.

Wharfside

Amy Denney, RECE – Supervisor
Our wonderful Supervisor, Amy brings over 25 years of experience to our centre. She has acquired a vibrant background through a variety of settings including childcare centres, schools, and directly with families in their homes as a case manager. Her background gives her an incredible capacity to problem solve, develop child-specific programming, and assist families through transitions into our centre, and into JK when they are ready. Amy is always available to answer your questions by email at: amy.denney@steppingstonemuskoka.com
Stefanie Nadler, ECE Apprentice - Preschool
Stefanie has over 10 years' experience, 9 of which have been in licensed child care. She hold's a director's approval from the MEDU as an ECE with our centre as she works towards completion of her apprenticeship. Her creativity, love of nature, and unique approach to programming offer children excellent opportunities to explore their environment with hands-on learning. Stefanie and her co-educators have created an immersive, vibrant and stimulating learning experience for our preschoolers. 
Kyla Corcoran, RECE - Preschool
Kyla has been working in the childcare field for 12 years. She built her foundations as an educator as a coach for basketball and figure skating, eventually moving to running Kindergarten Readiness programs. For 6 years, she worked as a DECE with the Durham District School board in Full-day Kindergarten. Having recently moved back to Muskoka, Kyla brings her outgoing, fun, energetic nature to our preschool class. Her approach to programming focuses on children's interest, nature, and mathematical & literacy behaviours. She enjoys making learning fun and seeing children's faces light up when they learn something new or understand something for the first time.
Alexis Floyd, RECE - Toddler
Alexis is a Registered Early Childhood Educator with 2 years' experience in licensed child care. She believes in a child-directed approach where children can explore through sensory and get messy. She enjoys providing opportunities where our toddlers can learn through open-ended art and sensory-based learning experiences that help them to develop their fine-motor skills, develop language & literacy skills, and practice gross-motor movement. 

Brock Street

Shawna Biamonte, RECE - Supervisor
Shawna brings her theatrical, creative, energetic nature to the Supervisor role at our Brock Street Location, along with over 10 years of child care experience in varying licensed child care settings. In addition, she loves incorporating yoga, movement and puppetry into her programming, often inciting laughter and play in the children throughout the day. Having a positive impact on a child's life truly warms her heart, and she creates exciting, interesting learning opportunities with a focus on healthy living. 
Torie Dennis-Thompson, RECE 
Torie has always had a passion for working with children, and instilling a love of learning into children at a young age. A recent honour-roll graduate of the ECE program at Georgian College, Torie also has a degree in Child and Family Studies from Nipissing University. She believes in co-constructing experiences alongside the children, and getting on their level to experience the world as they do.

Our Healthy Eating Philosophy

We have developed a menu that caters to children’s diverse tastes and preferences by offering common favourites with healthy twists. While we may serve menu items such as macaroni and cheese, our recipes have been developed to include sauces made primarily of vegetables. Even picky eaters will be eating nutrient-rich foods. We also offer fresh, healthy, homemade snacks, giving children the opportunity to understand and respond to their own hunger cues throughout the day. Our menu uses no processed food or sugar, we limit fats and salts, and focus on wholesome ingredients.

How We Are Different

- Visual art projects, creative building, and sensory play
- Dance, yoga, and vigorous physical games and free play
- Musical instruments, songs, reading and interactive storytelling
- Gardening and learning to care for animals through
  interactive projects
- Daily forest walks and outdoor exploration, including observation of
  our diverse environments
- Group participation and leadership skills 
- Discovering various cultures and backgrounds of each member of
  our community
- Lessons and workshops outside our regular program hours
- Access to daily videos & blog
- Field trips
- Seasonal showcases for parents and families
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Stepping Stone Early    Learning Academy ltd.

If you have any questions or would like more information about our centre or how to register please contact us!”