Over the years, parents and children alike have learned from their time in Leaping Lizards. These are a few testimonials of their experiences.
Words from Former Students
This essay was written by a former Leaping Lizards student for her 7th grade public speaking class. She decided to write about Leaping Lizards and the impact it had on her.
Sometimes when you feel really small, you don’t think you can make a difference for the people that matter to you. Magdalena never made me feel small, even at four years old- she never made anyone feel small. Right before kindergarten, I wrote a song. It was for her, my preschool teacher at leaping lizards. When I sang it to her, she sat there crying, and she hugged me. I wondered why she was crying; she wasn’t sad. I learned she was crying out of happiness. Magdalena showed me tears of joy. She found happiness from paint stains on pint-sized chairs, kissing banana slugs, and me. When someone is so great to me, I feel like I should be able to make them happy too. It is a wonderful feeling when I can. I was amazed that I could make someone so happy with one little poem, and promised myself to do it again.
Magdalena was generous, caring, fun-loving and a nature enthusiast. Every day we used to meet in that woman’s own garage to color and paint. She had a beautiful garden. I remember Magdalena was good at crafts. Sometime she played guitar and we all sang along. She took us on hikes in the woods, showed us how to paint our faces with rocks, and how to eat fruit without wasting anything. We never hiked too far for our little feet, and always stopped somewhere fun, like a river, a pond, or a clearing. She even taught us how to use a hammer and nails, so we could make pencil holders for mother’s day. One day she showed us a log fort. We had loads of fun with that.
She led by example, and I am still following. In seventh grade, I always eat my apples right down to the core and watermelon into the rind. I love painting with watercolors and acrylic paints, and doing all kinds of 3D art as well. I don’t play guitar, but have taken up the violin. Many places we went around the bay area I still visit with my family today. I hike a lot, and have accomplished ten miles in a day with M&Ms. I am also a beginning backpacker- someday I hope to go backpacking through the wilderness of Alaska. I still write poetry and build forts. I try to make people happy and be kind. I know that I can mean so much to those who matter most to me. Sometimes I even cry tears of joy.
These poems were written by a 7 year old former student and dedicated to Leaping Lizards.
Hello forest I’ve come again
to see the wonders you have to share today
I’ve come to play
in your leaves and your streams
I’ve come to follow your never ending paths
I run down a river and
I happen to see a chestnut
rolling to me. I pick it up
It is brown and very smooth
I look up and to my right I see pile of them
as if welcoming me
I feel the breeze hit against my cheek
I smell the redwoods’ leaves
and think how wonderful it is to be here
My Heart Soars
In the darkness of the moonlight of nature,
the beauty of the trees and the softness of the sky,
the fragrance of some pinecones speak to me.
In the morning I feel the strength of the sunlight
the taste of berries
the trail of lightning
And the life that never goes away
They speak to me and my heart soars
Words from Parents
Visit our Parent Testimonial page to read what parents of current and former students say about the program.
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In The Press
Gentry Magazine, November 2011
My Life: My Words – Magdalena Cabrera, Founder of Leaping Lizards Nature Awareness Preschool
As told to Jessica Goldman
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Eucalyptus, December 2009
More Schools Inspired By Nature
written by Jennifer Moscatello
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