In 2004 a young mother named Wendy Ahlman (I know I’ve heard that name somewhere before) started Chrysalis Preschool. With a newborn in her arms, and her three year old learning at her feet she began teaching her students and developing a new learning system--the positive results were immediate. However, this initial success simply planted the seed for a greater quest. It wasn’t just a job, and it wasn’t about coin. While her prices were a shave higher than the competition, she chose to keep her classes small, optimizing her face time with each child.
Parents soon realized the illumination of young minds occurring within the modest walls of that quaint old house were on a different order of magnitude. Wendy began attracting students with parents from both opulent means, as well as those who struggled to give their children the best education they could find. Void of glitz, status, or entrapments there was a new sparkle in their children’s eyes--the budding of knowledge, achievement, and self-respect.
But Wendy wasn’t satisfied, she went back to school to receive her degree in Elementary Education (graduating Cum Laude) while running her own preschool, going through pregnancy, giving birth to her youngest. Amazingly, during this time she also began writing children’s books, and after graduation Wendy spent the summer designing her own curriculum worksheets and started producing a new series of books for her first time readers--the Chrysalis Series. The Chrysalis Series was finished in September, 2010 and has 12 books so far. During this time Wendy also ran and was elected to the Governing Board of Freedom Academy Charter School where her daughters and many of her past students now attend. (NOTE: Freedom Academy was recently recognized as the #1 charter school in Utah for excellence.)
Wendy’s students have been enjoying these books for some time now, but they will soon be available to the general public. While these books are very simple, only eight pages each, each book forwards the story within the series. Herein not only the mechanics of reading are taught, but the love of reading as well. Each page is accompanied with playful illustrations, which Wendy also drew, using the basic shape technique that she uses every day when teaching arts and science, yes, she has discovered a clever way of combining the two.
So, kudos are again in order. But don’t worry about Wendy getting a big head. Luckily she has me as an anchor, or at least she has me to weigh her down, whatever the case may be.