Leaps Ahead Learning Center is a childcare center located in the Halethorpe area. It is located inside of the former Ascension School building where LALC owner, Samantha Schene Walls, attended grades 1-8. Originally a home daycare, demand continued to grow and a larger space was needed. Leaps Ahead Learning Center opened at its current location on December 1, 2015 at 4601 Maple Avenue. It currently has five classrooms and caters to children ages 6 weeks – 5 years.


Children are offered a wide variety of activities to include those that are child-directed and teacher-directed.  Children are given opportunities to foster self discovery and independence through exploration and personal choice of activity. Teachers also lead lessons on literacy/reading, math, science, art, sensory activities, fine and gross motor development and varying themes. Children learn these skills through centers, indoor and outdoor play and daily work. Children are given every opportunity to experiment and express themselves through hands on activities. These include areas such as:

  • Circle Time
  • Art and Creative Experiences
  • Fine and Gross motor skills
  • Science, Math and Social Studies lessons
  • Language Arts and Writing
  • Sensory Time
  • Rotating and stationary centers which give children opportunities for free play and exploration
  • Free reading times for children to take a quiet moment alone or to practice reading with a teacher
  • Teaching children about nature, our planet, current events and holidays
  • Promoting social development through strong peer interaction.

Leaps Ahead Learning is a childcare facility geared towards teaching children how to get along with one another, how to take care of nature and our planet and how to reach out to connect with individuals in our community. While doing these things, LALC also teaches cognitive skills based on the guidelines set forth by MSDE. We try to give children the opportunity to develop as individuals while working together in a group. We want our students to be prepared for Kindergarten cognitively, emotionally and physically!

Our mission is to teach children cognitive skills, social skills and life skills. We want our children to graduate from LALC with a sense of confidence in themselves, their school and each other.

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