“I always liked kids and teaching. I loved to see children explore and learn,” says LaShawn Bridges, owner of Blessed Beginnings Learning Center. “Being there for that aha! moment gives me deep joy, because I always knew I wanted to help children be great.”
Blessed Beginnings started as a two-child operation in Bridges’ mother’s home. Two decades later, Blessed Beginnings has relocated to a new building on Detroit’s east side, one that boasts a five-star Michigan Department of Education rating. “Five stars means that we’re serious about what we do. You’re held to a higher standard because you worked hard to reach those goals, and it’s a reflection of the care that we give,” Bridges says.
As a Motor City Match winner, Bridges received a $75,000 grant to purchase and furnish the new building with everything that her innovative curriculum might need. Comfort lighting, enclosed playscapes, sensory tables and age-appropriate décor are just some of the features of the new space.
Through Blessed Beginnings programs, Bridges wants to restructure how kids learn and grow in Detroit. “We use the HighScope curriculum. I believe if you build on social-emotional skills, academic success will follow,” she says.
“Success comes in assertive speaking, problem solving, listening and focus, alongside hands-on STEAM experience.” Blessed Beginnings accepts kids aged 6 weeks to 5 years, and tuition, fees and scholarship assistance for families are evaluated based on income and need.
14050 E. Eight Mile Road, Detroit