Preschool

Welcome to our Junior Jaguars Preschool!

Our preschool classroom is a combination of purposeful instruction and active play.  We have created a classroom environment that promotes early learning and development.  Through a combination of teacher-directed small group lessons, whole group lessons, and active play, exploration and experimentation, the children grow academically as well as thrive with their social-emotional development.  


We utilize the Houghton Mifflin Pre-K Series.  It is a proven-effective comprehensive program that ensures kindergarten readiness by building the foundation for success in school and life.  The program encompasses all subject areas including Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Science and Art.  With the use of a variety of learning resources including quality Literature, AlphaFriends Letters, Oral Language Cards, Rhyme and Chant Posters, the children develop their language and literacy skills.  They practice listening, speaking, writing, and pre-reading skills including phonological awareness, word/print recognition, and exposure to print concepts. 

 

HANDWRITING WITHOUT TEARS

The children are exposed to writing in many ways throughout the school day.  We adopted the Handwriting Without Tears program for use in the classroom.  The primary focus is proper hand grip while exposure and practice with writing letters and numbers.  It utilizes fun, engaging and developmentally appropriate instructional methods that enable children to master handwriting as an automatic and comfortable skill.


MATH

Our curriculum includes math extensions but we also have the additional Pre-K Math set to augment what is included in the series.  The children explore a wide variety of math concepts throughout the year including number sense, classification/patterning, measurement, and geometry with a strong focus on number sense.  


RELIGION

The children are invited to explore, discover, and learn more about themselves, relationships with others, and about God's creations through our Religion curriculum.  We use the Our Sunday Visitor “I am Special” series.


SCIENCE

In addition to the Science concepts introduced in the curriculum, we provide the children with a Science activity and exploration table in the classroom.  This is a hands-on way for them to enhance and re-visit the concepts taught in the classroom.    


Our Teachers

Meet Our Director:

Jean Wilson

My name is Jean Wilson and I am very excited to be part of the Junior Jaguar Preschool Program as the founding Director. Being part of the staff is like “coming home” for me.


I started working at St. Joseph back in 1988 in the Extended Day Care as an aide and later the director. I worked there all through college while I was receiving my degree in Child Development and my Teaching Credential. Upon completing school, I started my teaching fourth grade here at St. Joseph. I taught fourth grade for three years before starting my own family. 


After being home full-time for a several years, I started back to work part-time at Wilson Preschool 

in Santa Clara as a Parent Education Preschool Teacher. Raising my own children as well as my work at Wilson Preschool helped me to fully appreciate the wonder and importance of Early Childhood Education. I taught at all age levels at the preschool from Toddlers to Pre-K. 


I also have experience as Resource Specialist in Parent Education. I worked at Choices for Children in San Jose. In that role, I organized and presented workshops for parents on topics related to parenting including Positive Discipline, Taming Temper Tantrums, The Five Keys to Raising Healthy, Happy Eaters and Kindergarten Readiness. I also trained childcare providers on best practices with children in group settings.


On a personal note, I am married to a wonderful man named Mark. We have two sons, both of whom are SJC graduates and a fur baby named Sadie. In my free time, I like to watch SF Giants games, read and work on my many house projects.


Meet Our Teachers:

Bianca Liu

My name is Bianca Liu.  I feel blessed and am very excited to be one of the teachers of the SJC preschool.


I have a master's degree in education and a Montessori Early Childhood Teaching Credential.  Upon completing my graduate studies, I worked at Legend Learning and Family Resource Center for five years, teaching elementary school children in an afterschool setting.  After starting my own family and staying home with my elder daughter for a few years, I went back to school and earned my teaching credential as a Montessori teacher.  Then I went on to teach at Delight Montessori school for four years. 


Prior to joining the Junior Jaguar Preschool staff, I was already attracted by the warm and friendly environment of SJC through the participation in my older daughter's school activities.  My two daughters are students here at St. Joseph.  


As a mother and a preschool teacher, I know how anticipated and at the same time how unsure a child would feel about starting preschool, you can be sure your child will find many loving and caring teachers here to walk that path with him/her.  And for the Chinese families in our community, since I speak both Mandarin and Cantonese, your child will find an additional support among all the friendly teachers.


Lauren Sullivan

My name is Lauren Sullivan and I feel very honored and blessed to be part of an amazing team of teachers and excellent preschool program for the Junior Jaguars Preschool at St. Joseph of Cupertino.


I believe that as a woman of faith my goal is to express my beliefs in my community through the education of children. I have had the pleasure over many years of experience successfully planning, conducting and supervising activities with children of various pre-school and school ages. I enjoy creating exciting and enriched environments to enhance curriculum and quality learning experiences.  I have an Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Arts and also completed coursework in American Sign Language.


My passions have always been art and photography and in the last few years scrapbooking. I combined my teaching, art, photography and scrapbooking skills and recently created and taught a kid's camp where children were enriched in art and crafts at a local scrapbooking store.


My dream had always been to work at St. Joseph School.  My dream came true when starting my position in 2010. As an added bonus, I met my husband in the halls of St. Joseph (he is the sixth grade teacher at SJC).  We were married here at St. Joseph of Cupertino and welcomed our son in April 2016. It is so exciting to be living my dream and I look forward each year to inspire our students to start creating their dreams.

 

Erin Edem

My name is Erin Edem and I’m excited to be a part of the SJC Junior Jaguar staff. I’m married with 2 grown sons who both graduated from St. Joseph of Cupertino School.


I earned a degree in Child Development from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and was a preschool teacher for the first 15 years of my career. I then earned a teaching credential from National University and became the Kindergarten teacher at SJC. I was in that position for 5 years. I decided to cut back my hours a bit and took a position as the Reading Intervention/Sue Barton Dyslexia teacher for grades K-3rd.   In 2017 I retired so that I could spend time with my granddaughter but found that I had some time on my hands. Mrs. Wilson offered me a spot on Friday mornings at the preschool as well as subbing opportunities and I accepted. I feel blessed to be spending time with the preschoolers. It is so special to be able to watch them grow in all areas of development throughout the year! 


Charissa Aragones

Hello, my name is Charissa Aragones. I am blessed to be part of a welcoming community of parents, teachers and most of all loving students. I have not only found my career, but my passion to teach and inspire students. 


I received a bachelor’s degree in Advertising with a minor in Art from San Jose State University. In addition to my bachelors, I have taken classes in early childhood development. My journey has led me to a career as a preschool teacher for the last eight years. As a dedicated educator, I strive to nurture my students as individuals in their growth and development.  I believe my purpose is to make a difference in the lives of children and families through education and in the community. In 2008, I started a community service project assembling activity packs for children at Oakland Children’s Hospital and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. Additionally, I have coordinated multiple coat drives with One Warm Coat. 


I’m excited to meet your child. It will be a true adventure filled with lots of learning and laughter.


Karen Patel

Hi!  I’m Karen Patel, and I’m so happy to be a member of the Junior Jaguars in St. Joseph’s Preschool.  I started teaching preschool in 1996 at Saratoga Presbyterian, then joined the Diocese of San Jose in 2000.  Aside from preschool, I’ve aided in grades 1 through 6.


I’ve always loved teaching, anything from dolls and dogs to toddlers and turtles!  Now I help out my grandkids with math, science and reading.  We also have lots of fun with art projects.


I’m originally from Boston where I attended Catholic school from 1st through 12th grades.  I met my husband, who’s from India, at a dance and we married a year later.  I didn’t work for ten years when I had my children (the most wonderful years of my life!) After my son and daughter went to school I worked part-time at various jobs around town.


I was planning to retire at the end of this school year from Holy Spirit School in Almaden, when I noticed this listing on the Diocesan website.   I couldn’t believe it!  This is so much better than retirement.  I get to have my mornings to do whatever I want, and I get to play with the preschool children all afternoon!  It is truly a job sent from heaven!