Staff

Ruth Crawmer, Founder & Owner, Step 9

Ruth Crawmer

Founder & Owner, Step 9

Being a mother of five children, I can understand the frustration of searching for infant or preschool programming for your child.  When my oldest was one year old, I under went the same process and share in your bitter experiences.  With two children with severe food allergies, I can understand the frustration of parents trying… Read more

Ruth Crawmer

Founder & Owner, Step 9

Being a mother of five children, I can understand the frustration of searching for infant or preschool programming for your child.  When my oldest was one year old, I under went the same process and share in your bitter experiences.  With two children with severe food allergies, I can understand the frustration of parents trying to find childcare and maintain and allergy free environment.  My goal is to provide a place your son or daughter looks forward to each day, where they have friends and a place you can trust.  All the other things you find out about us and our motivation are just additional pieces we’ve added to enhance our program.

My passion is to make a difference in our community.  To positively impact our region, our state and our world through cutting edge practices with early learning.  It all starts with our children.  The investment we make now in our students across the divide with change our world.  Giving students the opportunity to learn a second language, be exposed to music classes, dance classes, soccer and organized sports as part of their daily learning experience expands their young minds.  I believe the change starts with me.

Who am I?

I am an energetic free spirited adult.  Free time for my husband and I includes ballroom dancing, west coast swing (club style), and salsa dancing.  In the summers biking, hiking, camping, white water rafting and sign language interpreting is what I enjoy most.  Whether at home with my family, in preschool with my class or on vacation, I love to play!  Don’t be surprised to walk into the classroom and see me playing “crazy ballerina” with my students, or telling a tall tale or using puppets to make a point about behaviors.  Play is what I do well.  In addition, I have a strong musical background both in vocals and band so I use this to teach music and rhythm in the summer session of school.  I take great pride in seeing my students graduate into kindergarten being the brightest in their elementary classes.

 

How I started our company:

In 2000 I had a vision and we began our adventure.  May of 2003 we expanded to our High Pointe location and in 2005 we expanded our capacity at this site.  In 2006 a second site was born for infants and toddlers.  Then in 2008 a third site for our 2 year olds and in 2010 a 4th site for families of mixed ages.  In 2012 we opened a center for 130 students and in 2014 we opened a second center for 100.  With 50 staff and 250 students in and out during the week, we downsized in early 2016, allowing us more personal connections with our families and students.  Then in 2019 with a substantial waiting list Pilot Butte was opened.  Quickly following that in 2020 our Galveston location was opened.  With three smaller sites we feel more connected to our families and community.

 

Where we are at now

With many families on our online waiting list, we decided to take the jump and open a second location.  Currently we have two locations at Bend Preschool; High Pointe Preschool and Pilot Butte.  At High Pointe we accept students 24 months through 5 years and at Pilot Butte we accept students 6 weeks through 5 years old.

Credentials

  • Portland Community College
  • Central OR Community College
  • CPR 1st/Aid
  • Abuse and Neglect Certified Reporter
  • Restaurant Grade Food Handler
  • Criminally Background Checked
  • Infant Certified Teacher
  • Major American Sign Language
  • Arts & Child Development
  • Step 9 on the Oregon Registry

Experience

  • 20 years as a Director
  • 13 years multi-center director
  • 6 years as a Personal Nanny
  • 4 years as a Teachers’ Assistant
  • 2 years as a Sunday School Teacher
  • Mother of 5 Children; 23yrs, 20yrs, 16yrs, 12yrs and 10 year old.

Additional Classes

  • Guidance and behavior management
  • Curriculum
  • Child development
  • Infant/toddler curriculum
  • Families and other social systems
  • Professional and personal development
  • Child passenger safety art experiences for preschool children
  • Synthesizing brain research
  • Cooking up nutrition
  • Mandatory reporting
  • The heart of a young child
  • Grant writing
  • Business classes
  • Building a Better Business
  • Oregon child care basics 1 & 2
  • Social and emotional health
  • Human growth and development
  • Health, safety and nutrition

Training

  • Infant/toddler CPR & 1st aid
  • Food Handlers Card
  • Criminal Background Check
  • Abuse and Neglect Certified
  • Infant/Toddler Certified
  • Step 7.5 PDR
  • Preschool Certified
  • Local Trainer

Russ Crawmer, President, Step 8

Russ Crawmer

President, Step 8

Running an infant program may seem like the last thing a lot of people would want to be involved in.  After becoming one of the first infant certified male providers in Oregon, I have continuing working towards my degree.  Opening our 8th facility in 2019 has been a pure joy. Being a Dad of 5 children… Read more

Russ Crawmer

President, Step 8

Running an infant program may seem like the last thing a lot of people would want to be involved in.  After becoming one of the first infant certified male providers in Oregon, I have continuing working towards my degree.  Opening our 8th facility in 2019 has been a pure joy.

Being a Dad of 5 children for 21 years, I’ve learned it really does take the right kind of person to make it work. You have to allow yourself to be a kid again. You can’t be afraid to talk to your 3 month old like they know what’s going on, give them 6 more months, they’ll get it!

We work ASL (American Sign Language) into our schedule each day to give infants an awesome jump start on communication. I’ve had a 14 month old argue milk vs water in ASL, pretty funny! I spend most of my time on the floor, making funny faces, talking like cartoon characters, or dancing around the room like an animal! There are so many missed opportunities with our busy lives that cause our children to miss out on all the excitement life holds. Children need a proper balance of direction, self expression, exploration, guidance, nutrition, and examples of healthy communication and role models to thrive.

My wife an I were married in 1996 and love working together. The children see us dance, play, sing, and yes, even see some romance! From our daily schedule to the stories or dramas we act out, these children are all looking for their own place in the story of life and I am so blessed to be here.

 

+ Govenor Appointed Commissioner for the Oregon Commission on Child Care

Maggie, Therapy Dog

Maggie

Therapy Dog

Maggie is a fun loving golden doodle.  She has been in training classes since she was a puppy to become a therapy dog.  Maggie has two points of interaction with our students daily.  Her goals are to interact with the students and bring comfort to students who need the extra time and attention of a… Read more

Maggie

Therapy Dog

Maggie is a fun loving golden doodle.  She has been in training classes since she was a puppy to become a therapy dog.  Maggie has two points of interaction with our students daily.  Her goals are to interact with the students and bring comfort to students who need the extra time and attention of a cuddly friend.

 

Maggie celebrates her birthday each year in September.  This year she turns two.

Haddie, Therapy Dog

Haddie

Therapy Dog

Haddie is Maggie’s sister.  As a golden doodle her favorite things is hanging out with people.  Haddie comes in to visit our students twice a day.  During her visits she works with students on proper interactions with their pets at home. A game of fetch?  Haddie is always excited to play and she loves having time… Read more

Haddie

Therapy Dog

Haddie is Maggie’s sister.  As a golden doodle her favorite things is hanging out with people.  Haddie comes in to visit our students twice a day.  During her visits she works with students on proper interactions with their pets at home.

A game of fetch?  Haddie is always excited to play and she loves having time with her students engaging in games or just reading her a book.  In her free time Haddie loves to run.  She likes to take Mr Russ on long bike rides or play fetch with tennis balls.

This September is her second birthday.

Donna, Substitute Teacher

Donna

Substitute Teacher

Hi, I’m Donna, Ruth’s Mom.  Oregon has been home for me most of my life.  It was here I met and married my husband of 42 years, Kevin, and raised our two daughters. After graduating from High School, I attended Oregon State University; where I took classes in Office Administration and Home Economics.  My work… Read more

Donna

Substitute Teacher

Hi, I’m Donna, Ruth’s Mom.  Oregon has been home for me most of my life.  It was here I met and married my husband of 42 years, Kevin, and raised our two daughters.

After graduating from High School, I attended Oregon State University; where I took classes in Office Administration and Home Economics.  My work experience has been business related and most recently working in a CPA office as a staff accountant and for a church doing bookkeeping.  February through April I volunteer for the Tax-aide program here in Bend, helping people prepare their income taxes and file on-line.

During my spare time my five grandchildren are the top priority, spending time helping with their school and extra curricular activities.

I enjoy my new “retirement” job at Crawmer’s Critterz very much and find that the children are creative, fun loving and a real joy. You will find me in the kitchen helping to prepare food, setting up for lunches or snacks and assisting the teachers with whatever task is at hand.

Food allergies are particularly important to me.  Did you know that depending on which factories and which countries ingredients are made in, determines if the ingredients include wheat as the base ingredient or corn?  This can be a scary reality for students with severe allergies.

Having found out I am wheat and gluten intolerant, reading ingredient lists and finding out where things are made and their contaminates has become a priority for me as a cook.  I look for all of our foods to be made or grown in the US to ensure the quality food standards and cleanliness have been met for the best protection of our students with these dietary concerns.

Ms Faith

Teacher Advocate, Step 7.5 ORO

Ms Faith

Teacher Advocate, Step 7.5 ORO

Ms Lindsey

Lead Teacher, Step 10 ORO

Ms Lindsey

Lead Teacher, Step 10 ORO

Mrs Stacy

Site Director, Step 10 ORO

Mrs Stacy

Site Director, Step 10 ORO

Ms Kelcie

Teacher, Step 7 ORO

Ms Kelcie

Teacher, Step 7 ORO

Ms Ellie

Teacher, Step 5 ORO

Ms Ellie

Teacher, Step 5 ORO

Ms Kylee

Teacher, Step 5 ORO

Ms Kylee

Teacher, Step 5 ORO

Ms Morgan

Teacher, Step 10 ORO

Ms Morgan

Teacher, Step 10 ORO

Ms Kasey

Teacher Aide, Step 3 ORO

Ms Kasey

Teacher Aide, Step 3 ORO