Little School

The Little School facilitates children’s developmental growth socially, physically, and academically within a loving environment.

The school consists of four classrooms for children ages 3 and 4. These well-equipped classrooms contain carefully planned learning centers where each child can pursue, investigate, and explore activities that promote their creative interests. Unique enrichment programs and monthly thematic units supplement the curriculum.

Our days include time for:

  • Reading
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Cultural Studies
  • Enrichments such as Spanish, Yoga, Science, Music and Dance
  • Small Group Activities
  • Open Centers
  • Crafts
  • Snacks
  • Naps and Rest

LITTLE SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY

The Little School of Keystone provides a warm, nurturing environment designed to meet the needs and interests of young children in the context of the Mission of Keystone School. Our quality curriculum promotes a fun, positive and rewarding educational experience. Children express themselves creatively through self-directed and teacher-directed activities to promote a positive self-image.

Preschool

MONTHLY THEMES & UNITS

August

Welcome to School
New Beginnings: Respect and Manners

September

All About Me
My Family, My Friends, My Teachers and My School

October

Autumn, Leaves, Apples and Farm Animals

November

Thanksgiving Turkeys, Thankful Me, Thankful Feelings Five Senses
Celebrating Grandparents

December

Cultural Month: Celebrating Holidays Around the World

January

Celebrating Winter and Winter Animals Snowmen, Snow, Frozen Things

February

Happy, Healthy Me: Healthy Hearts, Body & Teeth Celebrating Texas and the Rodeo

March

Community Helpers Transportation and Space

April

Spring Planting, Flowers, Worms and Butterflies Earth day and Fiesta Fun

May

Measurement: How much have I grown? Summer Safety and Fun of Study

The Little School of Keystone Enrollment Process for New Students

STEP 1

  1. Make an online account with Username, Password, etc.
  2. Click on “Create a New Student Application”
  3. Fill in the appropriate information for the child
  4. Select Pre-K 3 or Pre-K 4 based on the child’s age at the start of the school year.

Once the enrollment form is complete online, you will be asked to verify that the information is correct and you will be asked for an electronic signature. Finally, parents will need to pay the $50 fee in order for the forms to be successfully submitted to Keystone.

STEP 2

The next step will be to schedule a campus tour with Dena Hoenig Valdez.  If you have not visited The Little School of Keystone, please call 210-369-9099 or email: dvaldez@keystoneschool.org to schedule a tour.

Schedule a Tour

STEP 3

Following the enrollment form and tour, we will invite your child to participate in a prescheduled play date in January.  The play date and tour is to confirm that the school is a good match for each student. We will contact you in regards to your play date.

STEP 4

A spot can only be reserved by visiting the school and participating in a play date.  Once steps 1, 2 and 3 have been completed and we feel the school is a good fit for your child, an enrollment agreement form with a $1,200 registration deposit to Keystone School will secure your child’s spot.

Spaces are limited. Priority will be given to current families and alumni who enroll by December.  Enrollment will open to the community in January.  Priority will then be given to those who are first to finish the enrollment process.

We look forward to getting to know you and your child.  If you have any questions about the above, feel free to contact Zina Wormley, Director of Admissions at 735-4022, ext. 325 or Dena Hoenig Valdez, Head of The Little School of Keystone at 369-9099.

History

The Little School of Keystone opened in Fall 2012 after Keystone received the pavilion and 2 acres from the Greek American Society and the Catacalos Family as a generous gift. Even now, the Greek-inspired architecture and olive trees serve as a reminder of the property’s rich heritage.

Today, the site holds four classrooms, an outdoor pavilion and a covered play area for preschoolers. Behind the Little School sits a field that offers space for Middle School physical education and soccer practice.

The Little School of Keystone Staff

Dena Hoenig Valdez

Position: Head of Preschool

Hello! Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! My name is Dena and I joined the Keystone staff in April of 2012. I am thrilled to have started Keystone’s first preschool program! I hold a Master of Education and an Elementary Teaching Certification with a specialization in Early Childhood from Southwest Texas University, now referred to as Texas State University. I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Family Studies with a Minor in Psychology from The University of Arizona. I am a native of San Antonio and graduate of Robert E. Lee High School.

I have always loved children! My Early Childhood experience has included being a camp counselor, teacher and Early Childhood Director. After finishing graduate school, I was hired as the Director of Heintz Preschool of Congregation Agudas Achim. I started their early childhood program and was there for 14 years before leaving in 2012 to start The Little School of Keystone.

I am married to my high school sweetheart, Christian. We have two wonderful children. Sari is 9 and graduated from The Little School of Keystone, she is currently in Third Grade. Gavin is 11 and entering Sixth Grade.

I would describe myself as a hugger and a kisser. Each day I look forward to greeting the children when they walk in our preschool doors. As the Head of Preschool, I look forward to working with each of you and making your child’s early childhood education a very positive and memorable experience here at The Little School of Keystone.

Dena Hoenig Valdez

Head of Preschool

Hello! Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! My name...

Ofelia M. Linkenhoger

Position: Director of After Care and Assistant to Head of Preschool

Welcome to our school! My name is pretty long for the little ones, so they can call me Ms. O. I was born in Tampico, Mexico, a beautiful port right off the Gulf Coast (about 300 miles south of the border.) I love relaxing by the beach just listening to the sound of the sea. I am the proud mother of my 23-year-old twins, Heather and Mikael.

I have been a teacher for 24 years; ten of these as a third-grade homeroom teacher at The American School of Tampico. From 2012 to 2017 I was an administrator and a teacher; teaching Math and Spanish in Middle School, being the RenWeb Administrator, and Head Coordinator of the Extended Day Program at a private, Catholic school here in San Antonio. I have a bachelor’s degree in Pedagogy with a concentration in Educational Psychology and hold a Master of Science degree in Multidisciplinary Studies from Buffalo State College, State University of New York. I have experience working with children of diverse cultures and different ages ranging from PreK3 thru Eighth grade. In 2017, I became a part of the community here at The Little School of Keystone. I have been blessed to be in one of the most rewarding professions in life, the formation of children.

It is my hope that your child will find our program to be an enjoyable and rewarding educational adventure!

Ofelia M. Linkenhoger

Director of After Care and Assistant to Head of Preschool

Welcome to our school! My name is pretty long for...

Isabel Henry

Position: Teacher and Enrichment Specialist

Welcome to the Little School of Keystone! My name is Isabel Henry and I am excited to be teaching in the Pre-K 3 classroom teacher. I can’t imagine teaching any otherage group.

I was born in Havana, Cuba and arrived in the United States at the age of two. I received my bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education and a minor in Special Education. I am certified to teach Spanish, which is my first language. I am the afternoon Spanish Enrichment Teacher. My passion for the Spanish Language and culture allow me to give your child a gift of a second language.

I am a mother of two adult boys, Douglas and Luis Andrés. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my children, traveling, going to the beach, baking, and walking.

I have been at The Little School since its inaugural year. I am incredibly lucky to be able to do something I love. Knowing that I’ve made a difference in my students’ lives is one of my greatest joys.

Isabel Henry

Teacher and Enrichment Specialist

Welcome to the Little School of Keystone! My name is...

Erin Ochoa

Position: Teacher

Hi there! My name is Erin Ochoa and I am very excited to be your child’s teacher this year at The Little School of Keystone.

I was born and raised in San Francisco, California for the first five years of my life. I moved to San Antonio, TX, just in time to begin my school year in Kindergarten. It was then at that young age that I realized I wanted to be a teacher when I grew up. I aspired to bring that type of passion and enjoyment into a classroom with my own students.

I graduated from Texas State University in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. I am certified to teach Early Childhood through 4th grade and English as a Second Language.

While in college I met my husband, Jason, a civil engineer graduate from Texas Tech University. We married in June 2010, and enjoy traveling, doing home improvements, and cheering at Texas Tech and Texas State football games. I also enjoy doing crafts, shopping, baking, writing, watching movies, reading, and spending time with friends and family.

After graduating from Texas State, I was a substitute teacher for Northside ISD for half a year before beginning a teaching position at a Primrose School, teaching Preschool, Pre- Kindergarten, and Kindergarten. In my last three years at Primrose, I was the Administrative Assistant and Mentor Teacher. In 2014, I became one of the Terrific Turtles’ teachers at The Little School of Keystone. I absolutely love being part of the Keystone family and am now able to bring my passion for teaching to my Keystone classroom.

In February 2016, we were blessed with the arrival of our miracle daughter London after pursuing IVF. In March 2018, we welcomed our second daughter Elizabeth. Along with our shih-tzu Ollie, we feel very fortunate to have London and Elizabeth in our lives and love experiencing the wonderful milestones they achieve.

I am excited to be a part of your child’s wonderful school experience here at The Little School!

Erin Ochoa

Teacher

Hi there! My name is Erin Ochoa and I am...

Alle Neesham

Position: Teacher

My name is Alle Neesham and I am so excited to be your child’s teacher this year! I Am a San Antonio native and graduated from the International School of the Americas. I received my bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of North Texas, Denton, and am certified to teach Early Childhood through 6th grade and ESL students. I am currently working on my Master of Education degree from the University of North Texas in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Educational Leadership.

I come from a long line of teachers and always knew that I would be a part of my family’s legacy. During my high school’s internship program, I was fortunate enough to intern in my mom’s kindergarten classroom. From that wonderful experience I knew that teaching young children was my passion and where I belonged.

Although my time spent in North Texas was rewarding, I am very happy to be back in my hometown and teaching at The Little School of Keystone. When I am not in the classroom, I love to draw, paint, read, play tennis, and spend time with my family and friends. I also love to travel and explore new and exciting places every chance I get.

I absolutely love a nurturing, yet challenging school environment and hope to pass my passion for learning on to your child!

Alle Neesham

Teacher

My name is Alle Neesham and I am so excited...

Viviane van Poppel

Position: Teacher and Soccer Enrichment Coach

Hi! I am Viviane van Poppel. I was born in Belgium, Europe and moved to San Antonio when I was 11 years old. I grew up speaking French and Dutch and I still speak both when I can. A couple of years ago I became an American Citizen but, in the Netherlands, I am recognized as holding a dual citizenship, so I am still Dutch as well.

It was my 2nd grade teacher in Belgium that inspired me to become a teacher. I also always knew that I wanted to be a mother and have children of my own. I have 2 great boys. Chase is 15 and Vance is 13.

I am certified to teach and graduated from UTSA with an Early Childhood Education degree. My most recent venture in teaching has been working for the past 9 years as a Pre-K teacher (3’s, 4’s & 5’s). I feel a great sense of joy when I see a child grow socially, emotionally, and academically. This is why I really enjoy teaching. One thing that can always bring a smile to my face is when a student comes up to me with a great sense of accomplishment from doing his or her work and that I know, as a teacher, that I helped that student feel that confidence.

I have also enjoyed playing and coaching a number of team sports over the years (mostly soccer) and it has been exciting to help build a love of sports in these younger children and watch them grow.

I am so excited to be a part of The Little School of Keystone and I can’t wait to meet everyone!

Viviane van Poppel

Teacher and Soccer Enrichment Coach

Hi! I am Viviane van Poppel. I was born in...

Janet Whitworth

Position: Teacher

Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! I am excited to say that I am one of the pre-K 4 teachers! I graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in Human Development & Family Sciences, and I am certified to teacher Early Childhood through 6th grade. I am also proud to say that I have been with The Little School of Keystone since they opened their doors!

I am blessed with a wonderful husband and three silly children: Liam, Olivia, and Nora. I am looking forward to getting to know each of you this coming year!

 

Janet Whitworth

Teacher

Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! I am excited...

Angela Brysch Garcia

Position: Teacher

Hi, my name is Angela Garcia, my students call me “Ms. Angela”. I am a native Texan. I enjoy outdoor activities especially gardening. My husband, J, and I enjoy an active lifestyle with our 3 children. Our sons, Alec (9th grade) attending The International School of the Americas, and Bron (7th grade), attending Keystone; and our daughter, Angelique, is a Junior studying marketing at the University of the Incarnate Word.

I also enjoy music and honing my teaching craft. I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Texas at San Antonio; and am a certified Kindergarten through 6th grade teacher. I am a teacher at heart and spend countless hours in professional development.

I am grateful to teach on the Keystone campus where I can practice evidence-based teaching strategies designed to meet the needs of every learner. The Little School of Keystone offers limitless resources to its teachers and provides teachers with autonomy that allows both teachers and students the ability to reach their full potential. The Little School campus is rich in history and beams beautiful architecture that provides inspiration where we can bring life to our philosophy of providing a warm, nurturing environment designed to meet the needs and interests of young children. For these reasons and more I am grateful to call The Little School of Keystone my school home. Welcome to our school 😊!

Angela Brysch Garcia

Teacher

Hi, my name is Angela Garcia, my students call me...

Michelle Gann

Position: Teacher

Hello there! My name is Michelle Gann and I am excited to be your child’s teacher at the Little School of Keystone!

I was born in Kennesaw, GA and lived there for about 6 months before my father was stationed at Edwards Air Force Base, California. In all my military life adventures, I attended 8 different schools. These experiences are what sparked my interest in being a teacher. All my teachers welcomed me into their classrooms with open arms; even if this was in the middle of the school year and treated me as if I was there from the first day of school. Finally, after all of our moves I settled back into my home state of Georgia where I graduated from high school and attended college.

I graduated from Berry College in Rome, GA in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education with an ESL endorsement. While I was attending Berry College, I worked as an assistant teacher at the Berry College Child Development Center. After graduating from Berry College, I accepted the Private Kindergarten teaching position at Primrose School of Huebner Village, where I worked for four years.

I met my husband when I was 8 years old in my Nana’s Sunday school class. You could say it was love at first sight! We married in August of 2012 in Castroville, TX. Even though Georgia is our forever home, we have enjoyed Texas and the adventures it has brought us thus far. We enjoy traveling, spending time with our kids, visiting our home state, playing co-ed soccer, and enjoying the outdoors together. We have a sweet, energetic, and loving two-year-old, Georgia and in October of 2017, we welcomed our son, Sawyer. We also have our “dog daughter,” a Maltipoo named Snowflake who we adopted in October of 2013.

I am very excited to be a part of the Little School of Keystone and getting to know the families new and old! This year will be fantastic!

Michelle Gann

Teacher

Hello there! My name is Michelle Gann and I am...

Lizzie Perez-Wences

Position: Teacher

Hi, I am Lizzie and I was born and raised in Mexico City. I am fluently bilingual and bicultural. I moved to Texas in High School and it has been home for many years.

I am proud to call UTSA my Alma Mater. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Geography. While working at an Environmental Engineering company for years, I realized the importance of educating people on our direct impact on the environment at a local and global scale. I then decided to become certified in Early Childhood education – 6th grade and to begin to plant seeds of the love for learning. I am very passionate about the environment and love teaching children about our Earth and our direct impact on it. I have been part of the Keystone Family since 2012.

I have two amazing dogs, Mojito and Frida Federika. In my spare time, I meditate and teach a meditation class for children. I love traveling with family and friends; specially to visit Mexico. I also enjoy reading magazines and books from around the world and cooking/baking with my mom.

I look forward to building a great parent teacher relationship with you and your child during this school year. I can’t wait to start another successful learning adventure!

Lizzie Perez-Wences

Teacher

Hi, I am Lizzie and I was born and raised...

Melissa Bidault

Position: Dance Teacher

My name is Melissa Bidault, my students call me Ms. Melissa. I was born and raised in San Antonio. I graduated from UTSA with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. I have been dancing for 11 years and working with children for 10 years. I joined the Kinderdance Company 3 years ago, which combined both of my passions. This will be my fourth school year working at The Little School of Keystone. I love being a part of children’s lives, watching them grow and making/sharing special memories.

I enjoy social activities, outdoor adventures, learning new things, and caring for my dog, Peedur.

I look forward to getting to know your children more throughout the coming school year!

Melissa Bidault

Dance Teacher

My name is Melissa Bidault, my students call me Ms....

Jackie Shepherd

Position: Music Enrichment Teacher

Greetings! My name is Jackie Shepherd and I am thrilled to be returning to The Little School of Keystone. I am retired from a 32-year career in public school education. Retirement allows me to pursue my passions, which include making music with young children! This is truly a dream job for me.

I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Master of Arts in Elementary Education from Austin College, a Master of Arts in Music Education from Stephen F. Austin State University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts from Boston University. (Can you tell I love school?) My doctoral research focused on early childhood music education and music education policy. In addition to my academic degrees, I am certified in Orff-Schulwerk and Dalcroze Eurhythmics music methods.

I was born and raised in San Antonio. My husband Scott and I, along with our five dogs and five birds, live in the house my parents moved into three days before I was born. I am the proud mother of two adult sons, a precious 5-year-old granddaughter, and 11- month-old joyful grandson.

In addition to making music with the children of the Little School of Keystone, I lead Music Together® classes for The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio, serve as a Correlations Specialist for Quaver’s Marvelous World of Music and an adjunct faculty member at Stephen F Austin State University. In my off-time, I teach Les Mills Body Pump TM and Pound fitness classes in several San Antonio gyms.

My goal for our Little Keystone music classes is to help your children experience the joy of music making. We will engage in all types of music, experiencing them through active participation. My philosophy of music education for young children is influenced by the Dalcroze philosophy that active music making develops musicianship through singing, improvising, and purposeful and creative movement. I look forward to sharing these experiences with your children! You are always welcome to join us!

Jackie Shepherd

Music Enrichment Teacher

Greetings! My name is Jackie Shepherd and I am thrilled...

Jackie Litofsky

Position: Spanish Enrichment Teacher

Hola! My name is Jackie and I am so excited to be the Spanish Teacher. I was born and raised in Mexico City. I have a degree in Communications. I moved to San Antonio in 1996 when I got married to my wonderful husband, Martin. We have two fantastic boys Alec, 21 and Jordan, 18.

I worked for Dena as a Spanish teacher for 7 years at her former school and now I am thrilled to be part of The Little School of Keystone. I really love when I see the kids learn and absorb another language. As the year goes by it is really impressive to see how much the children have learned.

You are more than welcome to come and be part of my class or to ask me any questions. Looking forward to meeting everyone! ☺

Jackie Litofsky

Spanish Enrichment Teacher

Hola! My name is Jackie and I am so excited...

Rhonda Payne

Position: After School Martial Arts Instructor

Hi, my name is Rhonda Payne, but my students call me Master Payne. This is our 4th year teaching here at the Little School. I was born in Longview, TX and have lived most of my life in San Antonio. I am a 7th degree Black Belt in both Taekwondo and Hapkido and own the House of Payne, Inc. known as the U.S. Martial Arts Training Center in Converse.

I was fortunate enough to compete in Olympic Taekwondo and won the National and World Championships from 1986-89 and 1993-94 and a Gold medal from the 1993 Olympic Sports Festival that was held here in San Antonio.

I have always loved teaching and coaching and making a positive impact on my students. I have a daughter, Angelique. My hobbies are ceramics, woodworking, leather tooling, drawing and fishing.

I teach self-defense and safety awareness and authored the book, Get REAL, A Safety Guide for Women and Girls.

Rhonda Payne

After School Martial Arts Instructor

Hi, my name is Rhonda Payne, but my students call...

Rozalia Ravitsky

Position: European Piano Academy Owner

Hi, my name is Rozalia. I opened European Piano Academy over 25 years ago. I worked with Dena at her previous school and I have been at The Little School of Keystone since its inaugural year in 2012. After growing up and finishing Piano School in Moldova, I attended Piano College and completed my master’s degree at the Music Conservatory. I started European Piano Academy in 1991 and taught a successful“Piano by Color” program developed to teach children as early as 3 years old. I Currently teach children in San Antonio, TX and in Manhattan, NY.

I have two grown daughters, Greta and Marianna. I have four beautiful grandchildren, ranging in age from 4-8. I am a strong believer in quality education and providing a great foundation starting at an early age. One of my daughters is an attorney and the other is a doctor, thanks to Keystone for the start of a great education.

I look forward to meeting all of you on Wednesday afternoons! I plan to introduce my young pianists to a beautiful and magical world of piano and music.

Rozalia Ravitsky

European Piano Academy Owner

Hi, my name is Rozalia. I opened European Piano Academy...

Rachel Calderon

Position: Aftercare & Support Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Calderon. I will be one of your child’s aftercare staff members. I have worked at Keystone School for 8 years. I started at the main campus and then joined The Little School of Keystone’s aftercare team in 2012. I love working with children and I am thrilled to be part of The Little School of Keystone’s aftercare program. I have two grown children of my own, one son and one daughter. I also have four wonderful grandchildren. I love the outdoors! I really enjoy bike riding and camping. I look forward to sharing some outdoor fun with your child!

Rachel Calderon

Aftercare & Support Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Calderon. I will be one...

Mariam Diab

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hello everyone! My name is Mariam Diab, and I am very excited to be joining The Little School of Keystone as an aftercare staff member for another year! I am 21 years old and was born in San Antonio, but I was raised overseas in a little country called Lebanon. I learned three languages there: Arabic, English, and French. I have two twin siblings that I helped my mom raise, and that’s where my love for children began. Other than taking care of children, I enjoy taking care of animals, baking, gardening, and board games. I recently graduated from the University of the Incarnate Word with a degree in Biology. I will start a master’s program in anatomy and then I’m planning on attending medical school with hopes of becoming a surgeon one day. I am looking forward to an enjoyable and exciting school year with your kids!

Mariam Diab

Aftercare Staff

Hello everyone! My name is Mariam Diab, and I am...

Lexi Tenorio

Position: Aftercare Teacher

Hello Everyone! My name is Alexis Hope Tenorio, but around here I’m more commonly known as Ms. Lexi! I am 21 years old and was Texas born and raised by my loving parents who taught me the importance of being hard-working, caring, and finding what makes you happy. In December of 2018, I graduated from The University of the Incarnate Word with a bachelor’s degree and am now officially a Registered Nurse. Working with others in a positive manner is very important to me, so I will be starting a new journey as a night shift nurse with University Hospital. However, I am proud to have been at The Little School for the past 2 years and don’t see myself leaving the team any time soon! I’m not shy when it comes to children, so you may see me channeling my inner child from time to time as I interact with your child and bombard them with lots of love! I have loved meeting all the wonderful kiddos that have come to our school and look forward to continuing to stay on as an aftercare teacher as much as I can! Thank you for giving us the opportunity to help your little ones grow into bright, loving, polite, and happy kids.

Lexi Tenorio

Aftercare Teacher

Hello Everyone! My name is Alexis Hope Tenorio, but around...

Hannah Hagen

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Hannah Hagen, and I’m excited to say I am a new aftercare staff member! I am 20 years old, and I was born in San Antonio. I am in my second year of college majoring in Kinesiology with plans of becoming an Occupational Therapist for children. I am the oldest of 4, and I have twin 6-year-old brothers, so you could say I’m experienced with childcare. I love arts and crafts, and in my free time I like to travel. I’m thrilled to be a part of The Little School and I can’t wait to meet everyone!

Hannah Hagen

Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Hannah Hagen, and I’m excited to...

Rachel Lynch

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Lynch and I am so excited to be working at the Little School! I am 18 years old and was born and raised in San Antonio. I am a senior and I will be graduating from Keystone this May. I have been at Keystone since kindergarten, so it has been a big part of my life. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be giving back to the Keystone community by spending time with the kids at the Little School.

Rachel Lynch

Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Lynch and I am so...

Mikayla Lewalski

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hello Everyone! My name is Mikayla Lewalski, and I am super excited to serve as an aftercare staff member for The Little School of Keystone! I am 24 years old and was born and raised here in San Antonio. I graduated from Texas A&M and am currently working on my master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at UT Health Science Center at San Antonio. When I am not studying, I am usually watching a movie, reading a good book, spending time with family, or playing with my puppies. My hobbies include: playing volleyball, basketball, tennis, and pretty much every other sport! I have always loved working with children and have served in several childcare positions as a camp counselor, VBS leader, and babysitter. I would describe myself as fun, outgoing, and creative! I look forward to getting to know your children and watch them grow throughout the year!

Mikayla Lewalski

Aftercare Staff

Hello Everyone! My name is Mikayla Lewalski, and I am...

Isabella Sullivan

Position: Aftercare Staff

I’m SO excited to be joining The Little School of Keystone staff! My name is Isabella “Bella” Sullivan, and I’m one of the aftercare staff members. I’m currently a junior at Keystone (big school) and have been attending since second grade. I’ll be starting college in Fall 2020 with an interest in studying psychology and furthering my education in law school. I play club volleyball and I am going to play collegiately as well. In my free time, I love to read, spend time with my family (which includes my Keystone classmates), and play with my puppy, workout, and of course, connect with kids! I’ve bonded with many of the kids here since they were in Kinder or First grade,and I’ve loved to watch them grow up. I look forward to meeting your kids and having a great school year with them!

Isabella Sullivan

Aftercare Staff

I’m SO excited to be joining The Little School of...

Children who are ready to enroll in Pre-K3 have learned these skills:

Reading Readiness

  • Enjoys and shows interest in looking at books
  • Recognizes the first letter in their name
  • Recognizes the difference between words and pictures
  • Enjoys listening to stories
  • Repeats rhyming words

Language Development

  • Speaks in 3-5 word sentences
  • Shows a developed vocabulary with majority of words spoken being understood by the teacher
  • Refers to self and teacher by name
  • Uses language to express actions, emotions and ideas
  • Memorizes and repeats finger plays or four-line songs
  • Uses language to describe a picture

Physical Skills

  • Able to use the bathroom independently
  • Begins to complete common tasks independently and seeks help with more difficult skills
  • Uses slides and climbing equipment
  • Runs easily with coordinated movements
  • Able to dress self
  • Demonstrates growing independence in hygiene, nutrition, and personal care
  • Acquiring self-help skills

Work Habits

  • Follows one- to two-step directions
  • Ability to focus independently on an individual task for an appropriate amount of time.
  • Engages in creative, imaginary, dramatic and musical play in various settings
  • Respects school property
  • Able to play in cooperative manner with other children
  • Interacts well in a group setting
  • Ability to work independently in small and large groups
  • Participates in clean up and puts away toys

Fine Motor Skills

  • Uses utensils when eating
  • Able to string large beads and lace through large holes
  • Turns single pages

Math

  • Rote counts to 5 or beyond
  • Recognizes 1-5
  • Recognizes and identifies given shapes
  • Able to sort objects by color
  • Recognizes the differences between numbers, letters and shapes

Children who are ready to enroll in Pre-K4 have learned these skills:

Reading Readiness

  • Knows alphabet in sequence
  • Recognizes first name
  • Knows letters in first name
  • Shows interest in books
  • Handles books properly
  • Recognizes rhyming patterns

Language Development

  • Speaks clearly
  • Speaks in complete sentences, not phrases
  • Expresses thought and feelings appropriately

Physical Skills

  • Able to use the bathroom independently
  • Begins and completes common tasks independently and seeks help with more difficult skills
  • Uses slides and climbing equipment
  • Runs easily with coordinated movements
  • Able to dress self
  • Demonstrates growing independence in hygiene, nutrition, and personal care
  • Possesses self-help skills

Work Habits

  • Follows one- to three-step directions
  • Ability to focus on a given task.
  • Able to complete the process in any given task.
  • Seeks help appropriately when needed
  • Observant
  • Curious
  • Ability to work independently in small and large groups
  • Makes easy transitions
  • Initiates imaginative play
  • Engages in cooperative play
  • Ability to manage impulsivity

Fine Motor Skills

  • Attempts to use snaps and zippers
  • Able to hold a writing tool properly
  • Has had practice using scissors and holds scissors appropriately

Math

  • Rote counts to 10 or beyond
  • One to one correspondence to 5
  • Recognizes 1-10
  • Knows at least two basic shapes
  • Knows basic colors

Curriculum

LITTLE SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY

The Little School of Keystone provides a warm, nurturing environment designed to meet the needs and interests of young children in the context of the Mission of Keystone School. Our quality curriculum promotes a fun, positive and rewarding educational experience. Children express themselves creatively through self-directed and teacher-directed activities to promote a positive self-image.

Preschool

MONTHLY THEMES & UNITS

August

Welcome to School
New Beginnings: Respect and Manners

September

All About Me
My Family, My Friends, My Teachers and My School

October

Autumn, Leaves, Apples and Farm Animals

November

Thanksgiving Turkeys, Thankful Me, Thankful Feelings Five Senses
Celebrating Grandparents

December

Cultural Month: Celebrating Holidays Around the World

January

Celebrating Winter and Winter Animals Snowmen, Snow, Frozen Things

February

Happy, Healthy Me: Healthy Hearts, Body & Teeth Celebrating Texas and the Rodeo

March

Community Helpers Transportation and Space

April

Spring Planting, Flowers, Worms and Butterflies Earth day and Fiesta Fun

May

Measurement: How much have I grown? Summer Safety and Fun of Study

How To Enroll

The Little School of Keystone Enrollment Process for New Students

STEP 1

  1. Make an online account with Username, Password, etc.
  2. Click on “Create a New Student Application”
  3. Fill in the appropriate information for the child
  4. Select Pre-K 3 or Pre-K 4 based on the child’s age at the start of the school year.

Once the enrollment form is complete online, you will be asked to verify that the information is correct and you will be asked for an electronic signature. Finally, parents will need to pay the $50 fee in order for the forms to be successfully submitted to Keystone.

STEP 2

The next step will be to schedule a campus tour with Dena Hoenig Valdez.  If you have not visited The Little School of Keystone, please call 210-369-9099 or email: dvaldez@keystoneschool.org to schedule a tour.

Schedule a Tour

STEP 3

Following the enrollment form and tour, we will invite your child to participate in a prescheduled play date in January.  The play date and tour is to confirm that the school is a good match for each student. We will contact you in regards to your play date.

STEP 4

A spot can only be reserved by visiting the school and participating in a play date.  Once steps 1, 2 and 3 have been completed and we feel the school is a good fit for your child, an enrollment agreement form with a $1,200 registration deposit to Keystone School will secure your child’s spot.

Spaces are limited. Priority will be given to current families and alumni who enroll by December.  Enrollment will open to the community in January.  Priority will then be given to those who are first to finish the enrollment process.

We look forward to getting to know you and your child.  If you have any questions about the above, feel free to contact Zina Wormley, Director of Admissions at 735-4022, ext. 325 or Dena Hoenig Valdez, Head of The Little School of Keystone at 369-9099.

Who We Are

History

The Little School of Keystone opened in Fall 2012 after Keystone received the pavilion and 2 acres from the Greek American Society and the Catacalos Family as a generous gift. Even now, the Greek-inspired architecture and olive trees serve as a reminder of the property’s rich heritage.

Today, the site holds four classrooms, an outdoor pavilion and a covered play area for preschoolers. Behind the Little School sits a field that offers space for Middle School physical education and soccer practice.

The Little School of Keystone Staff

Dena Hoenig Valdez

Position: Head of Preschool

Hello! Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! My name is Dena and I joined the Keystone staff in April of 2012. I am thrilled to have started Keystone’s first preschool program! I hold a Master of Education and an Elementary Teaching Certification with a specialization in Early Childhood from Southwest Texas University, now referred to as Texas State University. I have a Bachelor of Science Degree in Family Studies with a Minor in Psychology from The University of Arizona. I am a native of San Antonio and graduate of Robert E. Lee High School.

I have always loved children! My Early Childhood experience has included being a camp counselor, teacher and Early Childhood Director. After finishing graduate school, I was hired as the Director of Heintz Preschool of Congregation Agudas Achim. I started their early childhood program and was there for 14 years before leaving in 2012 to start The Little School of Keystone.

I am married to my high school sweetheart, Christian. We have two wonderful children. Sari is 9 and graduated from The Little School of Keystone, she is currently in Third Grade. Gavin is 11 and entering Sixth Grade.

I would describe myself as a hugger and a kisser. Each day I look forward to greeting the children when they walk in our preschool doors. As the Head of Preschool, I look forward to working with each of you and making your child’s early childhood education a very positive and memorable experience here at The Little School of Keystone.

Dena Hoenig Valdez

Head of Preschool

Hello! Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! My name...

Ofelia M. Linkenhoger

Position: Director of After Care and Assistant to Head of Preschool

Welcome to our school! My name is pretty long for the little ones, so they can call me Ms. O. I was born in Tampico, Mexico, a beautiful port right off the Gulf Coast (about 300 miles south of the border.) I love relaxing by the beach just listening to the sound of the sea. I am the proud mother of my 23-year-old twins, Heather and Mikael.

I have been a teacher for 24 years; ten of these as a third-grade homeroom teacher at The American School of Tampico. From 2012 to 2017 I was an administrator and a teacher; teaching Math and Spanish in Middle School, being the RenWeb Administrator, and Head Coordinator of the Extended Day Program at a private, Catholic school here in San Antonio. I have a bachelor’s degree in Pedagogy with a concentration in Educational Psychology and hold a Master of Science degree in Multidisciplinary Studies from Buffalo State College, State University of New York. I have experience working with children of diverse cultures and different ages ranging from PreK3 thru Eighth grade. In 2017, I became a part of the community here at The Little School of Keystone. I have been blessed to be in one of the most rewarding professions in life, the formation of children.

It is my hope that your child will find our program to be an enjoyable and rewarding educational adventure!

Ofelia M. Linkenhoger

Director of After Care and Assistant to Head of Preschool

Welcome to our school! My name is pretty long for...

Isabel Henry

Position: Teacher and Enrichment Specialist

Welcome to the Little School of Keystone! My name is Isabel Henry and I am excited to be teaching in the Pre-K 3 classroom teacher. I can’t imagine teaching any otherage group.

I was born in Havana, Cuba and arrived in the United States at the age of two. I received my bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education and a minor in Special Education. I am certified to teach Spanish, which is my first language. I am the afternoon Spanish Enrichment Teacher. My passion for the Spanish Language and culture allow me to give your child a gift of a second language.

I am a mother of two adult boys, Douglas and Luis Andrés. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my children, traveling, going to the beach, baking, and walking.

I have been at The Little School since its inaugural year. I am incredibly lucky to be able to do something I love. Knowing that I’ve made a difference in my students’ lives is one of my greatest joys.

Isabel Henry

Teacher and Enrichment Specialist

Welcome to the Little School of Keystone! My name is...

Erin Ochoa

Position: Teacher

Hi there! My name is Erin Ochoa and I am very excited to be your child’s teacher this year at The Little School of Keystone.

I was born and raised in San Francisco, California for the first five years of my life. I moved to San Antonio, TX, just in time to begin my school year in Kindergarten. It was then at that young age that I realized I wanted to be a teacher when I grew up. I aspired to bring that type of passion and enjoyment into a classroom with my own students.

I graduated from Texas State University in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. I am certified to teach Early Childhood through 4th grade and English as a Second Language.

While in college I met my husband, Jason, a civil engineer graduate from Texas Tech University. We married in June 2010, and enjoy traveling, doing home improvements, and cheering at Texas Tech and Texas State football games. I also enjoy doing crafts, shopping, baking, writing, watching movies, reading, and spending time with friends and family.

After graduating from Texas State, I was a substitute teacher for Northside ISD for half a year before beginning a teaching position at a Primrose School, teaching Preschool, Pre- Kindergarten, and Kindergarten. In my last three years at Primrose, I was the Administrative Assistant and Mentor Teacher. In 2014, I became one of the Terrific Turtles’ teachers at The Little School of Keystone. I absolutely love being part of the Keystone family and am now able to bring my passion for teaching to my Keystone classroom.

In February 2016, we were blessed with the arrival of our miracle daughter London after pursuing IVF. In March 2018, we welcomed our second daughter Elizabeth. Along with our shih-tzu Ollie, we feel very fortunate to have London and Elizabeth in our lives and love experiencing the wonderful milestones they achieve.

I am excited to be a part of your child’s wonderful school experience here at The Little School!

Erin Ochoa

Teacher

Hi there! My name is Erin Ochoa and I am...

Alle Neesham

Position: Teacher

My name is Alle Neesham and I am so excited to be your child’s teacher this year! I Am a San Antonio native and graduated from the International School of the Americas. I received my bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of North Texas, Denton, and am certified to teach Early Childhood through 6th grade and ESL students. I am currently working on my Master of Education degree from the University of North Texas in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Educational Leadership.

I come from a long line of teachers and always knew that I would be a part of my family’s legacy. During my high school’s internship program, I was fortunate enough to intern in my mom’s kindergarten classroom. From that wonderful experience I knew that teaching young children was my passion and where I belonged.

Although my time spent in North Texas was rewarding, I am very happy to be back in my hometown and teaching at The Little School of Keystone. When I am not in the classroom, I love to draw, paint, read, play tennis, and spend time with my family and friends. I also love to travel and explore new and exciting places every chance I get.

I absolutely love a nurturing, yet challenging school environment and hope to pass my passion for learning on to your child!

Alle Neesham

Teacher

My name is Alle Neesham and I am so excited...

Viviane van Poppel

Position: Teacher and Soccer Enrichment Coach

Hi! I am Viviane van Poppel. I was born in Belgium, Europe and moved to San Antonio when I was 11 years old. I grew up speaking French and Dutch and I still speak both when I can. A couple of years ago I became an American Citizen but, in the Netherlands, I am recognized as holding a dual citizenship, so I am still Dutch as well.

It was my 2nd grade teacher in Belgium that inspired me to become a teacher. I also always knew that I wanted to be a mother and have children of my own. I have 2 great boys. Chase is 15 and Vance is 13.

I am certified to teach and graduated from UTSA with an Early Childhood Education degree. My most recent venture in teaching has been working for the past 9 years as a Pre-K teacher (3’s, 4’s & 5’s). I feel a great sense of joy when I see a child grow socially, emotionally, and academically. This is why I really enjoy teaching. One thing that can always bring a smile to my face is when a student comes up to me with a great sense of accomplishment from doing his or her work and that I know, as a teacher, that I helped that student feel that confidence.

I have also enjoyed playing and coaching a number of team sports over the years (mostly soccer) and it has been exciting to help build a love of sports in these younger children and watch them grow.

I am so excited to be a part of The Little School of Keystone and I can’t wait to meet everyone!

Viviane van Poppel

Teacher and Soccer Enrichment Coach

Hi! I am Viviane van Poppel. I was born in...

Janet Whitworth

Position: Teacher

Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! I am excited to say that I am one of the pre-K 4 teachers! I graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in Human Development & Family Sciences, and I am certified to teacher Early Childhood through 6th grade. I am also proud to say that I have been with The Little School of Keystone since they opened their doors!

I am blessed with a wonderful husband and three silly children: Liam, Olivia, and Nora. I am looking forward to getting to know each of you this coming year!

 

Janet Whitworth

Teacher

Welcome to The Little School of Keystone! I am excited...

Angela Brysch Garcia

Position: Teacher

Hi, my name is Angela Garcia, my students call me “Ms. Angela”. I am a native Texan. I enjoy outdoor activities especially gardening. My husband, J, and I enjoy an active lifestyle with our 3 children. Our sons, Alec (9th grade) attending The International School of the Americas, and Bron (7th grade), attending Keystone; and our daughter, Angelique, is a Junior studying marketing at the University of the Incarnate Word.

I also enjoy music and honing my teaching craft. I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Texas at San Antonio; and am a certified Kindergarten through 6th grade teacher. I am a teacher at heart and spend countless hours in professional development.

I am grateful to teach on the Keystone campus where I can practice evidence-based teaching strategies designed to meet the needs of every learner. The Little School of Keystone offers limitless resources to its teachers and provides teachers with autonomy that allows both teachers and students the ability to reach their full potential. The Little School campus is rich in history and beams beautiful architecture that provides inspiration where we can bring life to our philosophy of providing a warm, nurturing environment designed to meet the needs and interests of young children. For these reasons and more I am grateful to call The Little School of Keystone my school home. Welcome to our school 😊!

Angela Brysch Garcia

Teacher

Hi, my name is Angela Garcia, my students call me...

Michelle Gann

Position: Teacher

Hello there! My name is Michelle Gann and I am excited to be your child’s teacher at the Little School of Keystone!

I was born in Kennesaw, GA and lived there for about 6 months before my father was stationed at Edwards Air Force Base, California. In all my military life adventures, I attended 8 different schools. These experiences are what sparked my interest in being a teacher. All my teachers welcomed me into their classrooms with open arms; even if this was in the middle of the school year and treated me as if I was there from the first day of school. Finally, after all of our moves I settled back into my home state of Georgia where I graduated from high school and attended college.

I graduated from Berry College in Rome, GA in 2011 with a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education with an ESL endorsement. While I was attending Berry College, I worked as an assistant teacher at the Berry College Child Development Center. After graduating from Berry College, I accepted the Private Kindergarten teaching position at Primrose School of Huebner Village, where I worked for four years.

I met my husband when I was 8 years old in my Nana’s Sunday school class. You could say it was love at first sight! We married in August of 2012 in Castroville, TX. Even though Georgia is our forever home, we have enjoyed Texas and the adventures it has brought us thus far. We enjoy traveling, spending time with our kids, visiting our home state, playing co-ed soccer, and enjoying the outdoors together. We have a sweet, energetic, and loving two-year-old, Georgia and in October of 2017, we welcomed our son, Sawyer. We also have our “dog daughter,” a Maltipoo named Snowflake who we adopted in October of 2013.

I am very excited to be a part of the Little School of Keystone and getting to know the families new and old! This year will be fantastic!

Michelle Gann

Teacher

Hello there! My name is Michelle Gann and I am...

Lizzie Perez-Wences

Position: Teacher

Hi, I am Lizzie and I was born and raised in Mexico City. I am fluently bilingual and bicultural. I moved to Texas in High School and it has been home for many years.

I am proud to call UTSA my Alma Mater. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Geography. While working at an Environmental Engineering company for years, I realized the importance of educating people on our direct impact on the environment at a local and global scale. I then decided to become certified in Early Childhood education – 6th grade and to begin to plant seeds of the love for learning. I am very passionate about the environment and love teaching children about our Earth and our direct impact on it. I have been part of the Keystone Family since 2012.

I have two amazing dogs, Mojito and Frida Federika. In my spare time, I meditate and teach a meditation class for children. I love traveling with family and friends; specially to visit Mexico. I also enjoy reading magazines and books from around the world and cooking/baking with my mom.

I look forward to building a great parent teacher relationship with you and your child during this school year. I can’t wait to start another successful learning adventure!

Lizzie Perez-Wences

Teacher

Hi, I am Lizzie and I was born and raised...

Melissa Bidault

Position: Dance Teacher

My name is Melissa Bidault, my students call me Ms. Melissa. I was born and raised in San Antonio. I graduated from UTSA with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics. I have been dancing for 11 years and working with children for 10 years. I joined the Kinderdance Company 3 years ago, which combined both of my passions. This will be my fourth school year working at The Little School of Keystone. I love being a part of children’s lives, watching them grow and making/sharing special memories.

I enjoy social activities, outdoor adventures, learning new things, and caring for my dog, Peedur.

I look forward to getting to know your children more throughout the coming school year!

Melissa Bidault

Dance Teacher

My name is Melissa Bidault, my students call me Ms....

Jackie Shepherd

Position: Music Enrichment Teacher

Greetings! My name is Jackie Shepherd and I am thrilled to be returning to The Little School of Keystone. I am retired from a 32-year career in public school education. Retirement allows me to pursue my passions, which include making music with young children! This is truly a dream job for me.

I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Master of Arts in Elementary Education from Austin College, a Master of Arts in Music Education from Stephen F. Austin State University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts from Boston University. (Can you tell I love school?) My doctoral research focused on early childhood music education and music education policy. In addition to my academic degrees, I am certified in Orff-Schulwerk and Dalcroze Eurhythmics music methods.

I was born and raised in San Antonio. My husband Scott and I, along with our five dogs and five birds, live in the house my parents moved into three days before I was born. I am the proud mother of two adult sons, a precious 5-year-old granddaughter, and 11- month-old joyful grandson.

In addition to making music with the children of the Little School of Keystone, I lead Music Together® classes for The Children’s Chorus of San Antonio, serve as a Correlations Specialist for Quaver’s Marvelous World of Music and an adjunct faculty member at Stephen F Austin State University. In my off-time, I teach Les Mills Body Pump TM and Pound fitness classes in several San Antonio gyms.

My goal for our Little Keystone music classes is to help your children experience the joy of music making. We will engage in all types of music, experiencing them through active participation. My philosophy of music education for young children is influenced by the Dalcroze philosophy that active music making develops musicianship through singing, improvising, and purposeful and creative movement. I look forward to sharing these experiences with your children! You are always welcome to join us!

Jackie Shepherd

Music Enrichment Teacher

Greetings! My name is Jackie Shepherd and I am thrilled...

Jackie Litofsky

Position: Spanish Enrichment Teacher

Hola! My name is Jackie and I am so excited to be the Spanish Teacher. I was born and raised in Mexico City. I have a degree in Communications. I moved to San Antonio in 1996 when I got married to my wonderful husband, Martin. We have two fantastic boys Alec, 21 and Jordan, 18.

I worked for Dena as a Spanish teacher for 7 years at her former school and now I am thrilled to be part of The Little School of Keystone. I really love when I see the kids learn and absorb another language. As the year goes by it is really impressive to see how much the children have learned.

You are more than welcome to come and be part of my class or to ask me any questions. Looking forward to meeting everyone! ☺

Jackie Litofsky

Spanish Enrichment Teacher

Hola! My name is Jackie and I am so excited...

Rhonda Payne

Position: After School Martial Arts Instructor

Hi, my name is Rhonda Payne, but my students call me Master Payne. This is our 4th year teaching here at the Little School. I was born in Longview, TX and have lived most of my life in San Antonio. I am a 7th degree Black Belt in both Taekwondo and Hapkido and own the House of Payne, Inc. known as the U.S. Martial Arts Training Center in Converse.

I was fortunate enough to compete in Olympic Taekwondo and won the National and World Championships from 1986-89 and 1993-94 and a Gold medal from the 1993 Olympic Sports Festival that was held here in San Antonio.

I have always loved teaching and coaching and making a positive impact on my students. I have a daughter, Angelique. My hobbies are ceramics, woodworking, leather tooling, drawing and fishing.

I teach self-defense and safety awareness and authored the book, Get REAL, A Safety Guide for Women and Girls.

Rhonda Payne

After School Martial Arts Instructor

Hi, my name is Rhonda Payne, but my students call...

Rozalia Ravitsky

Position: European Piano Academy Owner

Hi, my name is Rozalia. I opened European Piano Academy over 25 years ago. I worked with Dena at her previous school and I have been at The Little School of Keystone since its inaugural year in 2012. After growing up and finishing Piano School in Moldova, I attended Piano College and completed my master’s degree at the Music Conservatory. I started European Piano Academy in 1991 and taught a successful“Piano by Color” program developed to teach children as early as 3 years old. I Currently teach children in San Antonio, TX and in Manhattan, NY.

I have two grown daughters, Greta and Marianna. I have four beautiful grandchildren, ranging in age from 4-8. I am a strong believer in quality education and providing a great foundation starting at an early age. One of my daughters is an attorney and the other is a doctor, thanks to Keystone for the start of a great education.

I look forward to meeting all of you on Wednesday afternoons! I plan to introduce my young pianists to a beautiful and magical world of piano and music.

Rozalia Ravitsky

European Piano Academy Owner

Hi, my name is Rozalia. I opened European Piano Academy...

Rachel Calderon

Position: Aftercare & Support Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Calderon. I will be one of your child’s aftercare staff members. I have worked at Keystone School for 8 years. I started at the main campus and then joined The Little School of Keystone’s aftercare team in 2012. I love working with children and I am thrilled to be part of The Little School of Keystone’s aftercare program. I have two grown children of my own, one son and one daughter. I also have four wonderful grandchildren. I love the outdoors! I really enjoy bike riding and camping. I look forward to sharing some outdoor fun with your child!

Rachel Calderon

Aftercare & Support Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Calderon. I will be one...

Mariam Diab

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hello everyone! My name is Mariam Diab, and I am very excited to be joining The Little School of Keystone as an aftercare staff member for another year! I am 21 years old and was born in San Antonio, but I was raised overseas in a little country called Lebanon. I learned three languages there: Arabic, English, and French. I have two twin siblings that I helped my mom raise, and that’s where my love for children began. Other than taking care of children, I enjoy taking care of animals, baking, gardening, and board games. I recently graduated from the University of the Incarnate Word with a degree in Biology. I will start a master’s program in anatomy and then I’m planning on attending medical school with hopes of becoming a surgeon one day. I am looking forward to an enjoyable and exciting school year with your kids!

Mariam Diab

Aftercare Staff

Hello everyone! My name is Mariam Diab, and I am...

Lexi Tenorio

Position: Aftercare Teacher

Hello Everyone! My name is Alexis Hope Tenorio, but around here I’m more commonly known as Ms. Lexi! I am 21 years old and was Texas born and raised by my loving parents who taught me the importance of being hard-working, caring, and finding what makes you happy. In December of 2018, I graduated from The University of the Incarnate Word with a bachelor’s degree and am now officially a Registered Nurse. Working with others in a positive manner is very important to me, so I will be starting a new journey as a night shift nurse with University Hospital. However, I am proud to have been at The Little School for the past 2 years and don’t see myself leaving the team any time soon! I’m not shy when it comes to children, so you may see me channeling my inner child from time to time as I interact with your child and bombard them with lots of love! I have loved meeting all the wonderful kiddos that have come to our school and look forward to continuing to stay on as an aftercare teacher as much as I can! Thank you for giving us the opportunity to help your little ones grow into bright, loving, polite, and happy kids.

Lexi Tenorio

Aftercare Teacher

Hello Everyone! My name is Alexis Hope Tenorio, but around...

Hannah Hagen

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Hannah Hagen, and I’m excited to say I am a new aftercare staff member! I am 20 years old, and I was born in San Antonio. I am in my second year of college majoring in Kinesiology with plans of becoming an Occupational Therapist for children. I am the oldest of 4, and I have twin 6-year-old brothers, so you could say I’m experienced with childcare. I love arts and crafts, and in my free time I like to travel. I’m thrilled to be a part of The Little School and I can’t wait to meet everyone!

Hannah Hagen

Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Hannah Hagen, and I’m excited to...

Rachel Lynch

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Lynch and I am so excited to be working at the Little School! I am 18 years old and was born and raised in San Antonio. I am a senior and I will be graduating from Keystone this May. I have been at Keystone since kindergarten, so it has been a big part of my life. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be giving back to the Keystone community by spending time with the kids at the Little School.

Rachel Lynch

Aftercare Staff

Hi! My name is Rachel Lynch and I am so...

Mikayla Lewalski

Position: Aftercare Staff

Hello Everyone! My name is Mikayla Lewalski, and I am super excited to serve as an aftercare staff member for The Little School of Keystone! I am 24 years old and was born and raised here in San Antonio. I graduated from Texas A&M and am currently working on my master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at UT Health Science Center at San Antonio. When I am not studying, I am usually watching a movie, reading a good book, spending time with family, or playing with my puppies. My hobbies include: playing volleyball, basketball, tennis, and pretty much every other sport! I have always loved working with children and have served in several childcare positions as a camp counselor, VBS leader, and babysitter. I would describe myself as fun, outgoing, and creative! I look forward to getting to know your children and watch them grow throughout the year!

Mikayla Lewalski

Aftercare Staff

Hello Everyone! My name is Mikayla Lewalski, and I am...

Isabella Sullivan

Position: Aftercare Staff

I’m SO excited to be joining The Little School of Keystone staff! My name is Isabella “Bella” Sullivan, and I’m one of the aftercare staff members. I’m currently a junior at Keystone (big school) and have been attending since second grade. I’ll be starting college in Fall 2020 with an interest in studying psychology and furthering my education in law school. I play club volleyball and I am going to play collegiately as well. In my free time, I love to read, spend time with my family (which includes my Keystone classmates), and play with my puppy, workout, and of course, connect with kids! I’ve bonded with many of the kids here since they were in Kinder or First grade,and I’ve loved to watch them grow up. I look forward to meeting your kids and having a great school year with them!

Isabella Sullivan

Aftercare Staff

I’m SO excited to be joining The Little School of...

Testimonials
What Skills Do Children Need?

Children who are ready to enroll in Pre-K3 have learned these skills:

Reading Readiness

  • Enjoys and shows interest in looking at books
  • Recognizes the first letter in their name
  • Recognizes the difference between words and pictures
  • Enjoys listening to stories
  • Repeats rhyming words

Language Development

  • Speaks in 3-5 word sentences
  • Shows a developed vocabulary with majority of words spoken being understood by the teacher
  • Refers to self and teacher by name
  • Uses language to express actions, emotions and ideas
  • Memorizes and repeats finger plays or four-line songs
  • Uses language to describe a picture

Physical Skills

  • Able to use the bathroom independently
  • Begins to complete common tasks independently and seeks help with more difficult skills
  • Uses slides and climbing equipment
  • Runs easily with coordinated movements
  • Able to dress self
  • Demonstrates growing independence in hygiene, nutrition, and personal care
  • Acquiring self-help skills

Work Habits

  • Follows one- to two-step directions
  • Ability to focus independently on an individual task for an appropriate amount of time.
  • Engages in creative, imaginary, dramatic and musical play in various settings
  • Respects school property
  • Able to play in cooperative manner with other children
  • Interacts well in a group setting
  • Ability to work independently in small and large groups
  • Participates in clean up and puts away toys

Fine Motor Skills

  • Uses utensils when eating
  • Able to string large beads and lace through large holes
  • Turns single pages

Math

  • Rote counts to 5 or beyond
  • Recognizes 1-5
  • Recognizes and identifies given shapes
  • Able to sort objects by color
  • Recognizes the differences between numbers, letters and shapes

Children who are ready to enroll in Pre-K4 have learned these skills:

Reading Readiness

  • Knows alphabet in sequence
  • Recognizes first name
  • Knows letters in first name
  • Shows interest in books
  • Handles books properly
  • Recognizes rhyming patterns

Language Development

  • Speaks clearly
  • Speaks in complete sentences, not phrases
  • Expresses thought and feelings appropriately

Physical Skills

  • Able to use the bathroom independently
  • Begins and completes common tasks independently and seeks help with more difficult skills
  • Uses slides and climbing equipment
  • Runs easily with coordinated movements
  • Able to dress self
  • Demonstrates growing independence in hygiene, nutrition, and personal care
  • Possesses self-help skills

Work Habits

  • Follows one- to three-step directions
  • Ability to focus on a given task.
  • Able to complete the process in any given task.
  • Seeks help appropriately when needed
  • Observant
  • Curious
  • Ability to work independently in small and large groups
  • Makes easy transitions
  • Initiates imaginative play
  • Engages in cooperative play
  • Ability to manage impulsivity

Fine Motor Skills

  • Attempts to use snaps and zippers
  • Able to hold a writing tool properly
  • Has had practice using scissors and holds scissors appropriately

Math

  • Rote counts to 10 or beyond
  • One to one correspondence to 5
  • Recognizes 1-10
  • Knows at least two basic shapes
  • Knows basic colors