Preschool Team

Early Childhood Director: Julie Bedard

Julie has a Masters of Education in Early Childhood Curriculum and Instruction. She has served as a classroom teacher and Early Childhood Director for over 20 school years. She is also a popular speaker in early childhood topics for Teachers' Conferences. 

Her teaching philosophy includes a combination of free play, teacher-directed play and guided play. Students learn best through direct experience with objects and people, and it is the job of the teacher to set up the learning environment and schedule in ways that lead the children to learning outcomes. She prefers the term "intellectual" to "academic" in that children not only learn facts but also how to think on their own and solve problems. Social Emotional skills are at the forefront of any good Early Childhood program. Children receive the needed space and direction to learn to show respect for other children and adults and adjust to the classroom environment. 

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified, do not be discouraged for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9

Preschool 3's Teacher: Tara Schleef

Tara Schleef received a Master of Arts in Teaching from George Fox University in 2002.

After teaching a year, Tara chose to start a family and went back into teaching ten years

later. She has two sons; Evan who is 20 years old and Kellan who is 16. Before joining

Pilgrim this year, Tara taught preschool in Damascus, Oregon for 8 years. In her free time

she enjoys scrapbooking, creating cards, singing in a competitive choir, playing Mahjong

with friends, walking her dogs, and playing slow pitch softball. Tara strives to provide the best learning experience by including hands-on learning that nurtures curiosity, inspires a love of learning, and is fun. She believes preschool should focus on social emotional development as much as academics and be messy! Tara loves preschoolers because they remind us to slow down and enjoy the moment.

God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 1 John


Preschool 4'S Teacher: Carol Ewing

Mrs. Ewing is  celebrating her 20th year of teaching at Pilgrim; 30 years total in education. She has previously taught sixth grade, elementary music, and was a preschool in Tennessee, Georgia, and even in the country of Kenya! In addition to being Pilgrim's preschool 4's teacher, she is the music director for kindergarten through 8th grade.  She also directs the middle school choir, as well as several handbells choirs. Mrs. Ewing loves to see students discover their God-given talents, and their “aha” moments of learning a new skill. In her spare time, Mrs. Ewing loves spending time with her family and friends, going to musical theater, and being “Mimi” to her four grandsons.

For the JOY of the Lord is my strength. - Nehemiah 8:10