Our Preschool Team

Meet our Preschool Team
    • Melanie Brissette
      2's Teacher, LEAP Teacher 2's & 3's

      Melanie Brissette

      2's Teacher, LEAP Teacher 2's & 3's

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 23
      Years at DKH Academy: 9
      Education: BS from Florida State, MS degree in Social Work from UTA.
      Experience: Mrs. Brissette’s began her professional career in Florida where she was a liaison between the NICU and the Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) program in Jacksonville, Florida. She was also responsible for providing assessments to children birth to three and facilitating service coordination. Once in Texas, she began employment with the ECI program in Plano, TX as an Early Intervention Specialist and provided therapy to children birth to three who were identified as having developmental delays and disabilities. Clinical experience includes behavior modification, developmentally appropriate practices for 0-3, cognitive and behavioral techniques, play based early intervention methods, infant mental health, parent support, and social emotional development.

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Brissette is married and has 2 children. Her youngest son attended DKH academy from 2 yrs of age through kindergarten. She enjoys a committed yoga practice and taking care of her small zoo, which includes a dog, bearded dragon and a horse!

      Favorite Quote: “I don’t think anyone can grow unless he’s loved exactly as he is now, appreciated for what he is rather than what he will be.”- Fred Rogers

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: I truly believe children will thrive when loved. I want every child in my class to feel safe and secure and it is through play, routines, boundaries, respect and a learning rich environment where this can be achieved. My job is to make a child’s first school experience successful while also supporting the family through open and honest communication. I believe in developmentally appropriate practices and classroom environments that promote success for each child. School should be fun!

      Email: brissette@dkhacademy.org

    • Elissa Brown
      2's Teacher

      Elissa Brown

      2's Teacher

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 14
      Years at DKH Academy: 12
      Education: BS in Psychology with an emphasis in Child Development from Texas A&M Commerce
      Experience: Before starting at DKH, Mrs. Brown worked at Exploration Preparatory School as the Pre-K Assistant.

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Brown is married and has 4 young children, 3 of which are DKH graduates, and 1 more who will be attending DKH soon. She loves reading, baking, crafting and spending time with my family.

      Favorite Quote: “I think, at a child’s birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift would be curiosity.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

      Email: brown@dkhacademy.org

    • Meghann Callison
      3's Teacher

      Meghann Callison

      3's Teacher

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 12
      Years at DKH Academy: 7
      Education: Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education and Master of Science in Special Education from Texas Christian University.
      Experience: Mrs. Callison has worked in private daycare, ESL Pre-K in Fort Worth ISD, and ESL Head Start in Plano ISD.
      Hobbies and Family: – Mrs. Callison has been married for 10 years, and has a first grader and a fourth grader in Spanish Immersion in LISD.  They love to travel as often as they can, especially to the beach, the mountains, and Disney!  They regularly spend time with extended family and friends, watch college sports, and basically live on the youth baseball fields for their kids’ games.
      Email: callison@dkhacademy.org

       

    • Kimberly Clay
      3's Teacher

      Kimberly Clay

      3's Teacher

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 11
      Years at DKH Academy: 9
      Education: Bachelor of Social Work, Texas State University
      Experience: Volunteer and Paraprofessional in PPCD at CISD for two years. Six years as the 3’s Teacher and a year as Nature Explore Teacher

      Hobbies and Family: Married 27 years, one daughter and one Grandson attending DKH this year. Mrs. Clay enjoys the outdoors, animals, exercise and spending time with her Grandson.

      Favorite Quote: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: I am FUN!

      Email: clay@dkhacademy.org

    • Kathleen Goff
      2's Teacher Assistant

      Kathleen Goff

      2's Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 15
      Years at DKH Academy: 5
      Education: Bachelor of Arts from The University of North Texas
      Experience: Mrs. Goff spent her college years teaching at 2 local childcare facilities, and was a Substitute Teacher for LISD for 7 years.

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Goff is married and has two children, Austin and Abigail. They both attended DKH in the past.  She loves to run and participate in local races. She also enjoys swimming, designing anything on her Cricut, and spending time with her friends & family.

      Favorite Quote: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”  -Eleanor Roosevelt

    • Judy Grant
      3's & 4's Teacher Assistant

      Judy Grant

      3's & 4's Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education: 21
      Education: BS degree in Psychology/Science from the University of Houston.
      Supervisor Insurance Dept, MD Anderson 18 mos
      OfficeManager/Corporate Sec/Tres. Target Mud & Drilling 7 yrs
      Self-Employed – In Home Daycare 11 years
      Faith Lutheran Day School 2 yr old class 6 years
      McAuliffe Elementary 15 years- Inclusion teacher (10 years)Library Aide (5 years)

      Family & Hobbies:
      Married 38 years to Glenn
      Children:
      2 sons, 1 daughter, 2 daughter in laws, 2 grandchildren
      * attend DKH
      I love hanging out with my family and friends!
      I also enjoy reading, going to the movies and shopping.
      Quote: Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and, smarter than you think. -Winnie the Pooh

    • Makenna Griffith
      2's Teacher

      Makenna Griffith

      2's Teacher

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: This is my first official year stepping into the role of a classroom teacher (2020) and I am so excited to see what this year has to offer.

      Years at DKH: This is my first year at DKH, unless you count when I was here in school myself at the age of four or all the times I was at DKH to help with pajama nights, carnivals and various camps.

      Education: Associates of Arts in Teaching for EC-6th from North Central Texas College. I am currently working on getting my bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education EC-6th at Midwestern State University.

      Experience: I have worked as a babysitter and a nanny for several years. Since I was about 13 years old, I have been working summers up at DKH as an assistant. Along with summer camps I have also worked several pajama nights, carnivals and reading camps. I worked with 1st graders in the LISD school district for a year, 3rd graders at LDISD for a year and 2nd graders at LEISD for a year.

      Hobbies and Family: I am single. I have two older brothers. My mother is actually the original Mrs. Griffith at DKH. I knew from the moment I was old enough to help out with young children that it was a passion of mine. I enjoy walking, photography, nature, hiking, spending time with family as well as friends and mostly getting to see my dog when I get home.

      Favorite quote: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: My teaching style is very similar to my mother. I think this is why I wanted to carry on her special words, that she has basically trademarked for her two’s classroom, “You are KIND. You are SMART. You are IMPORTANT. You are LOVED.” My mom and I both share a love for spreading kindness, acceptance, positive self-views and positivity towards others. To me it is incredibly important for children to love themselves, love others and celebrate who we are rather than let our differences affect us. In our classroom I call the students our friends. I do this so that these children can grow up having that foundation of these other children in our classroom as close and loving friends. I believe that children thrive the most when they feel safe and loved. This is why I consider it my job to make each child’s first school experience a positive and successful one. I believe that if I can make learning fun it will only allow for these children to have a deeper desire for knowledge.

      Email: mgriffith@dkhacademy.org

    • Audrey Heckmann
      2's Teacher Assistant

      Audrey Heckmann

      2's Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 12
      Years at DKH Academy: 4
      Education: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Oklahoma State University
      Experience: Ms. Heckmann has an EC-8 and English as a Second Language (ESL) certification in Texas and Oklahoma. She’s had years of experience teaching all levels of English Language Learners both in the United States and in Costa Rica. Her experience teaching early childhood ages and toddlers ranges from college to present. She has also taught 5th grade math/science and 1st grade in the public school setting before becoming a stay at home mom with her oldest daughter in 2012. Ms. Heckmann joined DKH in 2017 as a 2s teacher. She also has been an ESL teacher for adults for the past 3 years and now serves and an Instructional Coach for the Denton ISD Adult Education department.

      Hobbies and Family: Ms. Heckmann and her husband Mark have 2 daughters, one graduate of DKH and one current attendee. When she isn’t teaching, she enjoys going on outings with her daughters and husband. She can’t resist watching a good movie or favorite TV show! You can also find her working in her garden or enjoying the fresh evening air as the sun sets. Traveling to new places is always one of her favorite things!

      Favorite Quotes:

      “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” -Mahatma Gandhi

      “When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary.” -Fred Rogers

      “You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -A.A. Milne

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: Ms. Heckmann believes that when connections are formed with children, a special relationship forms. The bond between teacher and student is a special one, and is one that Ms. Heckmann cherishes. She loves teaching 2 year olds because she loves seeing their excitement when they learn new things and believes that every day is a wonderful day when you are having fun! Young children learn best through play. Ms. Heckmann loves finding new and exciting ways for her students to learn while playing. In her classroom, you will find a loving and nurturing environment where students are given choices, actively engaged, and discovering new things!

    • Adrienne Howell
      2's Teacher

      Adrienne Howell

      2's Teacher

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: Since 2002, took a break to raise our children
      Years at DKH Academy: 4
      Education:  Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from SUNY College at Oneonta and Master of Science in Special Education from Mount Saint Mary College
      Experience: Mrs. Howell taught 3 years as a middle/high school math teacher at New York Military Academy and 8 years for LISD at Degan Elementary school.

      Hobbies and Family: My husband Jared and I have been married for 10 years and are blessed with 3 amazing children Leora 9, Gianna 7 and Jared 5.

      Favorite Quote: A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: To love and nurture as if they were my own children and use every window as a learning opportunity.

      Email: howell@dkhacademy.org

    • Laura Hudson
      2's Teacher & 3's Teacher Assistant

      Laura Hudson

      2's Teacher & 3's Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 8
      Years at DKH: 5
      Education: Bachelor of Science from Indiana University
      Experience: 4’s assistant at Trietsch Enrichment Center 2 years, Toddlers teacher at DKH Academy 2 years, 2’s teacher at DKH Academy 2 years

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Hudson has 1 daughter and twin boys.  She has been married for 25 years. Mrs. Hudson enjoys working out and crafting.

      Favorite Quote: “Treat your family like friends and your friends like family”

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: I love to incorporated science in my classroom.  I try to have a science experiment as well as an engineering activity every week.  I believe it stimulates the brain and promotes a critical and creative thinking process.

      Email: hudson@dkhacademy.org

    • Pat Lee
      3's Teacher & LEAP Teacher 2's & 3's

      Pat Lee

      3's Teacher & LEAP Teacher 2's & 3's

      Years of Experience in Education/Early Childhood: updating . . .
      Years at DKH Academy: 4
      Education: Mrs. Lee attended college and studied Early Childhood Education.  She has a Director’s License and she obtained Rising Star accreditation at the last school that she directed.
      Experience: Mrs. Lee worked for many years as a preschool teacher and teacher assistant. She worked for 25 years as Director of Preschools in Lewisville and Flower Mound.

      Hobbies and Family:  Art, Reading and spending time with our grown children and our ten grandkids. I love watching them all play various sports.  Our oldest daughter was one of the first year students of DKH when it was known as Das Kinder Haus.  I have always loved the program at DKH.

      Email: lee@dkhacademy.org

    • Michele McCann
      Toddler's Teacher & LEAP Nappers

      Michele McCann

      Toddler's Teacher & LEAP Nappers

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: Since 2000 I took a break to raise our three daughters. Did subbing and ran a personal business from home during that time.

      Years at DKH: 2

      Education: Attended University Of Northern Colorado in pursuit of an Early Childhood Education,
      Received an Associates Degree in Computer Programing and Network Administration from San Antonio College.

      Experience: 3’s and 4’s assistant and Nappers at DKH

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. McCann enjoys reading and cooking. She also loves the outdoors.
      Mrs. McCann has been married to her best friend Brian for 22 years and they have 3 beautiful daughters. She also has 4 fur babies; Coco the dog, Nola, Mr. Blue, and Miss Green her cats.

      Favorite Quote: “Stick with me the best is yet to be “

      Teaching Style: Play based, getting on the floor at their level, being hands on, helping them feel loved and confident for the next chapters in their lives.

      Email: McCann@dkhacademy.org

    • Julie McGovern
      2's Teacher Assistant, LEAP Assistant 2's & 3's

      Julie McGovern

      2's Teacher Assistant, LEAP Assistant 2's & 3's

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 10
      Years at DKH Academy: 10
      Education: Bachelor Degree for UNT
      Experience: 2’s Teacher / Assistant

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. McGovern has been married to her husband Matt married for 19 years. They have 3 children Jack 16, Kate 13, Hank 11.

      Favorite Quote: Simple words of a child can change everything.

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: Having fun and keeping the students happy is a strong goal I have for the classroom.

    • Jordan Moon
      3's Teacher & Toddlers Teacher Assistant

      Jordan Moon

      3's Teacher & Toddlers Teacher Assistant

      Education: Graduated from Marcus High School and has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Arkansas

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 4
      Years at DKH Academy: 1

      Experience: Ms. Moon spent her college years teaching an after-school enrichment program through a refugee resettlement non-profit for students ranging from 3 to 16. She also worked as a daycare assistant for a year where she cared for infants and children up to the age of 3.

      Hobbies and Family: Ms. Moon has two sisters: Ryan is a junior at Marcus and Taylor is a junior and soccer player at Baylor. She has a rescue dog named Tikka and another dog called Bentley. Ms. Moon has always wanted to be a teacher, and gets the amazing opportunity to work with her mom this year at DKH! She loves spending time with her family, watching sports (especially soccer), making crafts, and painting.

      Favorite Quote: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

      Email: moon@dkhacademy.org

    • Shiela Moon
      2's Teacher Assistant

      Shiela Moon

      2's Teacher Assistant

      Years at DKH Academy: first year

      Education: BS in Psychology with a Sociology minor from Texas Woman’s University.

      Experience: Before starting at DKH, Mrs. Moon worked with Special Education students at Heritage Elementary School. She has also raised three amazing children.

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Moon has been married for 25 years and has three daughters. Her oldest just graduated from the University of Arkansas and is currently teaching at DKH. Her middle daughter is a junior at Baylor University. Her youngest is a junior at Marcus High School. In her spare time, Mrs. Moon loves going to Baylor soccer games, crafting and spending time with my family and friends.

      Favorite Quote: Enjoy the little things in life…for one day you will look back and realize they were the big things. – Kurt Vonnegut

    • Stephanie Ranieri
      2's Teacher Assistant, LEAP Assistant 2's & 3's

      Stephanie Ranieri

      2's Teacher Assistant, LEAP Assistant 2's & 3's

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: 29
      Years at DKH Academy: 12
      Education: Bachelor of Applied Arts and Science with an emphasis on Occupational Training and Development
      Experience: After college, Stephanie worked several years as a curriculum developer, instructor and director of training.  Her curriculum has been implemented campus wide for faculty and staff at major universities as well as corporate education institutions within the DFW Metroplex.  In addition, she has held positions on accreditation teams responsible for upholding the highest standards of educational quality through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. She led a training team which helped to develop and implement student software systems at Southern Methodist University.   Before becoming a wife and mother, she was the corporate director of training and development for a national restaurant business with over 130 stores.

      Hobbies and Family: Ms. Stephanie is married and has two multi-talented teenagers.  She enjoys sports, music, and outdoor activities.

      Favorite Quote: The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. – Eleanor Roosevelt

      Teaching Style/Unique Quality: Hands down, I have the best job on the planet!  On any given day I am a dinosaur, a kitty cat, a taster of various cuisines, an auto mechanic, a builder of sky scrapers, and anything else a child can come up with.  Most importantly, I am a listener, a negotiator, a feelings validator, a communication coordinator, and a trusted friend to your children.  If they can dream it, they can be it, and I am 100% on board with them every step of the way.  You’ll find me in the school by listening for the sound of laughter because we do our fair share of that in the classroom. Allowing your child to bloom is my number one job.  I believe in meeting a child where they are, how they are, socially, emotionally, and academically.  We emphasize listening, communicating feelings and respect for not just other people, but for themselves and the world around us.

    • Celine Tobias
      3's & 4's Teacher Assistant

      Celine Tobias

      3's & 4's Teacher Assistant

      Years in education/early childhood: 4 (not sure if working in the preschool department at my church counts)

      Years at DKH Academy: 1 as a student :)

      Education: Graduated from Marcus High School, currently a freshman at the University of North Texas studying to become an elementary teacher

      Experience: volunteered in the preschool classrooms at Valley Creek Church for the past four years and also worked for one year as a Kid Keeper there. She has nannied and babysat kids of all ages for three years.

      Hobbies and Family: youngest of six kids, currently live with my two year old nephew who is like my own child. I enjoy spending time with friends, staying active, and going outdoors.

      Favorite Quote: “Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” – Mother Teresa

    • Tiffany Vaz
      Toddlers Teacher Assistant

      Tiffany Vaz

      Toddlers Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education: 12 years
      Years at DKH: 1st year
      Education: North Central Texas College Early childhood education. Currently enrolled in The Childcare Education Institute Online
      Experience: Montessori Teacher at Brighter Days Montessori for 5 years, Ran a private daycare catering to special needs children from ages 6 months to 2 years, a Preschool teacher at The Goddard School in Frisco.
      Hobbies and Family: I am married and have 3 children. I have a very large extended family that I love to spend time with! I enjoy traveling to new places, especially if there is a beach. Crafting, making new art projects and being outdoors are some of my favorite things to do!
      Favorite quote: The best way to make children good is to make them happy.- Oscar Wilde

    • Amber Wait
      3's Teacher Assistant

      Amber Wait

      3's Teacher Assistant

      Years in Education/Early Childhood: First Year

      Years at DKH: First year as an assistant, 6 as a parent!

      Education: Bachelors of Science in Industrial Engineering with a minor in Business from Texas A&M University. Before having children Amber worked in Nashville, TN as a Logistics Coordinator with Kroger managing deliveries for the entire eastern US, then moved to Louisville, KY and fell in love with local foods. She worked for a tiny co-op, as their office manager. After moving to Texas and having kiddos, she decided to stay at home. After volunteering for years in both kids’ school, she decided to make it official and actually start working at one.

      Hobbies and Family: Mrs. Amber LOVES to sew. She makes all sorts of everything from quilts to clothes. She also loves to cook and of course eat all the yummy things she makes. And since she loves fun you never know what color her hair might be. Anything from brown to hot pink! She got married way back in 2006 to her high school sweetheart, Keith. She has 2 kiddos. Cameron, currently in 3rd grade, and Violet, currently taking Jr. K here at DKH