Hi, my name is Lisa Kampwirth and I have been working in Early Childhood Education for over 30 years, and feel like I have found my home at Total Child. I love being a part of this wonderful community of parents, children, and educators at Total Child who believe in play-based education that supports and loves the total child. I have a master’s degree in early childhood education and development from the Erikson Institute. I am a proud mother of two children, one who is going to college in Switzerland and one who lives and works in Los Angeles, both wonderful locations for our vacations! I live with my dog Shadow and my husband Mark in Wilmette. I love to swim, take walks in the neighborhood, and make art.
Hello! My name is Jessica de l’Annee. I love working at Total Child because it is a magical place where children are at the center of all we do. Play-based education is highly valued and the families and staff are part of a supportive community. I have been at Total Child since 2013 and have taught pre-k, kindergarten, and 3’s. Prior to that, I taught middle school, was an applied behavioral analysis therapist for children with autism, and a nanny. I have a BA in elementary education from Elmhurst College and an endorsement in early childhood education from National Louis University. My husband Maurice and I have a cat named Liefje and a chinchilla named Munchkin. I love to read, travel, bike, hike, and play board games.
Hi y’all! My name is Kelsey Buckley. As a lifelong theatre artist, I have always had a deep appreciation for play and the joy of creativity. I was very drawn to Total Child’s play-based philosophy and respect for children. I feel so lucky to be joining the team as the two’s teacher this year. Prior to starting at Total Child, I worked as a toddler lead teacher, a preschool administrator, and a zoo educator. I am a current part-time student at the Erikson Institute working towards an MSW in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health. In my free time, I enjoy cooking, biking, and playing with my two cats, Champ and Scooter.
Howdy! I'm Jenna Stern. I am excited to join this wonderful team, and learn about what Total Child has to offer! I studied Political Science at Lake Forest College. I have spent my teenage years and early adulthood working with children. During my college years, I waited tables and walked dogs. I live with my roommates and two cats in Evanston. I am originally from Connecticut. I have a passion for the arts and I like to skateboard.
Hello, my name is Philip Crawford, and I am so excited to get the chance to join this welcoming group of parents, children, and educators at Total Child. I believe that all children learn differently and the opportunity to help children grow in their own individual way through play-based learning is what really inspired me to come to Total Child. I have been working with children for over five years now, from babysitting, to T-ball coaching, to helping with youth choir, to teaching at a preschool. I got my undergraduate degree in theatre and I love all of the arts. I’m originally from Nebraska, but now I live in Andersonville. I love animals and have a big fluffy cat named Tobie.
Hi there! My name is Heather Hall. I am delighted to work at Total Child as I really respect the teaching and learning approach that is valued here, where students’ interests and curiosities and parents and teachers collaboration guides play based instruction with conscious effort made to nurture and develop the many different types of intelligences in the process. I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology, returned to school to get my IL RN license (which is still active) and am currently pursuing my master’s degree in early childhood education. When I have free time, I love getting out- taking walks on hiking trails or throughout Chicago neighborhoods, taking pictures of animals I come across along the way and going to the stable to ride horses and play with all the barn animals. Singing and cooking are my two other loves.
Hi, my name is Frankie Plourde! I am so excited to join the Total Child community. I have been working in childcare since 2017 and am so excited to be working in the Explorers classroom this fall! As a recent graduate of DePaul University’s early childhood education program, I am a strong advocate for play-based learning. I love spending time with my two cats (Bennett and Darcy), reading, and going to the beach.
Hi there! My name is Ian Jeanette. As a new addition to the Total Child team, I’m excited to get to know each family we serve and encourage each child to develop a lifelong love of learning through play. I’m proud to bring with me experience in early childhood education and childcare from my work at CDS Hope Head Start, an early Head Start program from my hometown of Holland Michigan. As a new resident of the Chicago area, I enjoy exploring my surroundings by going on walks and spending time at the beach. Afterward, I like to relax at home with my two cats and a good book or art project.
Welcome, my name is Barbara Becker Gold. I love the community of families and educators at Total Child. We partner to support the whole child through play-based learning. I have worked in early childhood for twenty years and have a Bachelor's degree in Literature and Psychology from Loyola University. I have also taken several early childhood classes and trainings. I have three children, two of whom have also worked at Total Child. I love long walks, making jewelry, and reading detective novels.
Hiya! My name is Krista Skiffington. Working at Total Child has been a wonderful experience so far. I love the supportive, collaborative environment that feels like a true community. The educators here truly care about each child’s individual needs and work so hard to meet them where they're at. After graduating from Loyola University Chicago in 2017 with a B.A. in Psychology, I began working with children and haven’t stopped since! Some of my experience includes working as a kindergarten teacher in Thailand, a camp counselor in Chicago, and a registered behavior technician for kids with autism. I love to travel, write, hula hoop dance, and go on spontaneous adventures!
Hi, my name is Isabel Cieplinski. I am originally from Columbia, South America. I enjoy teaching the children Spanish during circle time. I have been working in early childhood education for 32 years and have been at Total Child for 21 years. The school is a wonderful place and I am very lucky to be able to share my passion for teaching with all the great families and their children. I have a B.A. in elementary school education from the University of El Volle in Columbia. In my free time I enjoy reading, watching movies, and boating in the summer. The water is my happy place!
Hi, my name is Jailine Hernandez. I enjoy working at Total Child because I get to work with amazing teachers that inspire me. The children are the sweetest and I like that they get to learn through playbased and Reggio. I went to U.I.C. and graduated with a BFA in Acting. After college, I worked at a few daycare centers and summer camps while I looked for auditions in the evenings. I soon realized how much I liked working with kids. I’m currently looking at options to go back to school to get my masters in education. I grew up on the south side of Chicago. I have four siblings and three nieces and nephews. My family means the world me me. On my weekends I enjoy hanging out with my cat, Cleo, cooking with my mom, and performing around the city.
Hi there! My name is Lucia Urquiaga but everyone calls me Luci. I love working for Total Child because I’m part of a very supportive team that helps cultivate a positive environment in the classroom. I’ve been working with children for seven years. I taught teens in a School of Rock music camp, worked at Dawes Elementary for three years as a paraprofessional in the K-2 special education room, and I was a nanny for two years for a child with special needs. I am currently getting my bachelors and eventually my masters degree in social work at Northeastern University. I live in Lincoln Square and enjoy playing guitar and singing. I also paint on the weekends with my grandmother in her art studio. I enjoy spending time with my friends and family creating meaningful relationships.
Hey, I’m Cory Shantz. I love exploring the outdoors with children and Total Child provides great outdoor spaces and proximity to many parks! I love that Total Child is a place where all of the staff members truly enjoy children. I have worked with children of all ages for seven years and in early childhood education for five, as well as earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Statistics. Before moving to Chicago I worked at a preschool in Albuquerque. I live with my girlfriend Kailey in Chicago. We love exploring the many neighborhoods and trying new restaurants and cuisines.
Hello all, my name is Celeste Kennedy. I love working at Total Child because of all of the amazing children and their different personalities. I love being able to share a connection with their wonderful parents as well. The other staff here offer a great amount of support and care to make Total Child such an amazing environment. I have been working with children for four years. I am currently studying Elementary Education with a minor in Bilingual Education, at DePaul University. I am a proud big sister to two amazing girls, who I love dearly. I live in Chicago and have always wanted to work with children. I enjoy spending time with my family, trying new foods, and spending time sewing and knitting.