“This book has served as a remarkable reminder to me of just how marvelous and profound it has been to personally witness, experience, and in some ways, participate in the calling and passion Jay has demonstrated throughout her entire life and long professional career. She continues as always to serve as a proponent, protector, and mentor for the recognition and advancement of appropriate educational practices.

Joy has been an invaluable mentor to me over the past forty years. She has helped me to understand how children best learn, how a teacher can mold or melt a child’s desire for learning, and instill feelings of individual worth and self-esteem. She has taught me how love and caring must be a major part of the student’s classroom experience for the desired goal of individualizing each learner’s growth and development.

Joy and I were blessed in having an intuitive knowing of our callings very early in life. One’s professional calling, by its very nature, will be deeply aligned within the very core of one’s entire being. This enlightened awareness guides and directs one’s every thought and action. Many years ago, I presented to Joy a quote which I had engraved on a plaque that so wonderfully captured the very essence of what I had witnessed in Joy’s life and career.

When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds; your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties, and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be.” (Patanjali, as quoted by Wayne Dyer)

– Dr. John Paul Vansant

“I had the great privilege of having Mrs. Vansant as my teacher for two years. Just to hear her voice carries me back to second and third grades. I was instantly drawn to her. I remember her classroom perfectly. It was home. I always felt safe and loved and eager to learn. She taught me so much more than school work. She took me on a journey through life. I learned compassion as she praised us when we were kind to one another. We were encouraged to seek help when needed and give help freely. She encouraged us to grow – not just to learn. She has an amazing way of bringing out the best in people. I was able to visit her classroom as an adult. I am still amazed at her ability to establish an internal value that empowers a child to excel. It is her gift … powerful love!”

– Wendy Kennon

“We are very blessed and fortunate to have found Dr. Joy. Both of our daughters look forward to working with Dr. Joy every day and come home beaming week after week. Our oldest daughter was struggling in school … dreading it every day. In just a short time, she went from struggling and downcast to thriving and excited. She is diving into interests and passions she did not even know she had. “

– James Smith

“I remember being in fourth and fifth grades and going to the same school as my mom. Sometimes she would let me stay in her kindergarten or first grade class and help. I loved having my mom as a teacher and learned so much from her. She was a very hands-on teacher and liked to use every opportunity to take her class outside and do science projects. Her students loved her and would just light up when they came into her class. Apart from just teaching the basics, she would teach the students to love nature and to learn all things about it. As an adult, I’ve noticed that I have gained the same passion with my own children as well as teaching preschool. I love you, mom, and am so proud of you for all that you have accomplished.”

– Joanna Raines