Stepping Stones, Inc. 1100 Wakarusa DriveLawrence, KS 66049US
Stepping Stones, Inc.

Early Learning Center

Early Learning Center

Early Learning CenterEarly Learning CenterEarly Learning Center

About Us

We Are A Family

Stepping Stones provides a caring, welcoming, family-friendly environment for children and parents alike - creating lasting connections and making impressions that shape our children’s lives. We are a non-profit early learning center that becomes a home away from home where people truly care about one another and help each other teach, learn and grow.

Like a family, together we celebrate each other’s milestones and successes - taking first steps, saying first words, learning the ABC’s, tying shoes, reading a book, starting kindergarten and graduating to next steps in life. We also provide comfort, support, encouragement and assistance to each other during life’s many challenges. We strive to always do our best to meet the needs of each member of our family and to help all our children build a firm foundation enabling them to be confident, compassionate, successful and always excited to learn.


 Menu: Week 3 (March 2-6)


Best of Lawrence 2020 is here! Vote for us in February for best childcare in Lawrence! Voting window is open February 3-28! We'll find out the results in June!


Our Stepping Stones family is made up of many dedicated families and staff whose support is vital to our success. We value the relationships that are formed over the years at the center. We enjoy watching each child grow-up with us. On several occasions, our alumni, who have graduated from Stepping Stones, have returned to work here as staff and staff have come back as parents. These new roles strengthen our Stepping Stones family and extend it in a new direction. 

"We can’t imagine raising our children without Stepping Stones. For over fifteen years our three children took part in every element of the program. The environment, a combination of love and fun learning, has been a vital part of each of our children’s development. "

- Karl Watson, former parent

"I have been part of Stepping Stones for a long time, both as a child and later on as an employee.  To me Stepping Stones is not only a place to send your children or a place to work, but is more like an extended family.  Stepping Stones is a happy place to be and enjoyable to be a part of.  As a child that happiness comes from fun learning activities, teachers who are excited to be a part of your life, and friendships that last beyond Stepping Stones’ classrooms.  As an employee the happiness comes from the ability to impact many young lives, the opportunity to watch children grow and develop as they graduate from room to room, and the support from fellow staff and the families."

- Sara Gering, staff & alum

"We have been part of the Stepping Stones family since September 1997.  I say “family” because that is what it truly becomes.  It’s not just the kids who make friends at the center!  Entire families become friends through the great social activities like the spring and fall picnics, pool parties, the Halloween carnival and many other fun events throughout the year.  The friendships that my two daughters have made through Stepping Stones have lasted through the years even though the kids have moved on to different Elementary and Jr. High schools. 

We have always had such peace of mind knowing that the girls are happy and well cared for.  Shelly is a wonderful director who has a keen ability to hire excellent lead teachers and staff.  We have experienced every room at Stepping Stones from the infant room to the afterschool room and we have never been disappointed!  Each classroom seems to have a perfect balance of structure, education and fun.  All of the staff members create a caring and positive environment.  Stepping Stones has been a wonderful part of our life. " 

-The Hays Family (Curtis, Nancy, Chloe and Cara) 

"It is hard to put into words what Stepping Stones means to the Townley family.  When I was a sophomore in college, I worked part-time at Stepping Stones as an aide in Pre2.  Right away I felt comfortable and welcomed by all the families, and it was fun to come to work everyday.  As time went on, I developed lots of lasting relationships with coworkers and parents.  Many of my friendships today are centered around my years at Stepping Stones.  When it came to my children, the choice of where to send them for care was obvious.  After working at Stepping Stones, I knew that no other daycare would give my kids the same amount of attention, love, or fun that the teachers there would give them.  I knew I could trust Shelly to treat my kids as her own as I had witnessed her do for many years.  Stepping Stones is a special place and I feel privileged to have sent my children there.  It is like family to me."

- Morgen Townley, parent & former staff