My name is Mindy West and I feel as if I have been given the opportunity of a lifetime to teach for such a wonderful preschool. I began my education at St. Paul’s Episcopal School in 4-K and continued through the 12th grade. It was in kindergarten with my fabulous teacher, Patti Norris, that I decided I wanted to be a teacher when I grew up. I graduated from St. Paul’s in 1991. I attended and graduated from The University of South Alabama with a degree in Special Education in 1994. I married my high school sweetheart, Gary West, several months before graduation. Just after graduation, I began working for the Mobile County Public School System as a special education teacher for children in grades kindergarten through 5th grade. After teaching in the public schools for several years, I became pregnant with my first child, Taylor (16). I decided at that time not to return to the public schools once he was born and in turn I became a stay at home mom. When Taylor was 3, I decided it was time for him to go preschool. I returned to my lifelong passion of teaching. I obtained a job at Gan Shalom Preschool as their 4 year old teacher and program director. During those 7 years at Gan Shalom Preschool, I became pregnant with my second and third child. Tucker (12) was born in 2001 and my one and only daughter, Maddie (11), was born in 2003. Shortly after the school year began in 2008, Maddie slipped and fell on a plastic slide and was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury. I was unable to return to school due to her accident. We spent 4 long weeks in the hospital praying our sweet girl would live. We spent the next 2 months in the hospital doing rehabilitation and therapy. She is our very own miracle! In 2009 much to the doctor’s amazement, Trooper (5), was born. We named him Trooper because the doctor’s feared he would never make it due to the amount of stress I was under. In 2009 when Trooper was 3 months old, we found out we were pregnant with our little caboose! Townsend (4) was born in 2010. As you can see we love kids! Gary and I are very involved with our children and their various activities. I’m excited about my new endeavor as the 2 year old teacher. I am drawn to teaching 2 year olds because at that age all children are like “little sponges” with their inquisitive minds always ready to absorb all the amazing hands-on learning opportunities that are around them.