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Meet Ms. Jessica, Lead Toddler Teacher at The Children’s Courtyard in Lacey, WA. She has been at this location for almost six years, initially teaching one-year-olds and recently moving into the twos classroom. Read on to learn more about this amazing member of our team!
Tell us some more about your background!
I have taken some college courses in early childhood education and I have my Child Development Associate. I’m currently working toward my Associate of Arts degree. I’ve been working in this field for over 10 years now.
Why did you choose a career in early childhood education?
I come from a very big family – I’m Hispanic so we just have huge families! We always do everything together and it’s a very nurturing family, so I feel like I’ve had that desire to nurture from a very young age. I always wanted to work with children and help children the best I could.
What do you enjoy about working with the toddler age group?
You just see so much growth. They absorb information so quickly, and it’s wonderful to know that I’m helping them learn these things that will help them grow in life. It’s really just lovely to see that.
Could you share some examples of activities that you do in the classroom?
I love circle time. That’s one of my favorite things because we start teaching them sign language during that time. When they start learning “more” and “please,” it’s like, “Oh my gosh, you did it!” And they just sit so nicely and they love books which I read during circle time. I have a passion for books, so to show them what I love and to see that they love it, it’s awesome.
What’s your favorite book to read to them?
I like Amazing Feelings by Anna W. Bardaus because at that age, they still can’t really use their words, so by using sign language to express their emotions, that really helps them in the classroom.
What has been one of your favorite moments since you’ve been at your location?
I was on maternity leave and when I came back, they had to switch me to the twos classroom. I’m kind of a creature of habit, so when I was going to this twos classroom, I was very scared and very nervous, but when I started there, everyone told me I rocked it. So when we had our Professional Development Day meeting, I found out I had gotten our Teacher of the Year and I just cried like a baby. I try and do the best I can wherever I go because I’m a perfectionist and I want the best for the kids. When I got that I just felt so happy and proud.
How is the staff dynamic at your school?
We have really good management here. They make us feel like we’re a family. We spend so much time here, we spend more time with them than we do our actual families. I feel like we are very close. We do things outside of work as a family, we do things inside of work as a family. It’s very happy here, I’m always laughing. It’s a really good feeling to walk into work and to want to be here. It’s so lovely, it really is.