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West Union KinderCare

Heidi Cusworth, Center Director

18275 NW West Union Rd. Portland OR 97229
(503) 531-4046 Contact this center

Ages: 6 Weeks to 12 YEAR-OLDS
Open:

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Elementary Schools Bussed To:
West Union, Lenox, Bethany, Jacob Wismer (pronounced Whiz mer), Oak Hills, Rock Creek, Springville

Welcome

Our teaching team is fun, energetic, nurturing and dedicated to fulfilling the needs of the whole child while at our school. We want your child to come and learn with us.

Heidi Cusworth, Center Director

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SCHOOL-READY

Our kids are taking off!

By kindergarten, our kids are testing ahead of their peers. Read all about it.

Our Programs

Infant Programs (6 weeks - 1 year)

Babies grow and learn every day. Our goal is to provide a safe and nurturing "home away from home" where babies can explore and make new discoveries. We know that learning through play is extremely valuable at this age and our Early Foundations® Infant program is designed to give babies the skills that will serve as the building blocks for a lifetime of learning.

Toddler Programs (1 – 2 Years)

As toddlers develop friendships, self-esteem, and curiosity, our Early Foundations® Toddler program will help them explore their world in a safe and nurturing environment. Our unique curriculum is based on the philosophy that children learn best through experiences. So each day is filled with fun activities that excite and develop toddlers, giving them the comfort and confidence to speak those first few important words, as well as make their first friends.

Discovery Preschool Programs (2 – 3 Years)

At this age, children are making new discoveries daily. And as two-year olds begin to exert their independence, our Early Foundations® Discovery Preschool program is prepared to open their eyes to a world of learning, sharing, and exploring. Our holistic approach in the classroom engages young minds with a blend of music, art, and movement, as well as the early education fundamentals they'll need as they continue on to preschool.

Preschool Programs (3 – 4 Years)

As preschoolers gain more self-esteem, they may feel ready to take on the world. Our Early Foundations® Preschool program enhances that confidence by providing activities to help children become problem solvers and lifelong learners. Through independent exploration, structured activities, and hands-on learning, children will work on early literacy, math, science, and social studies concepts. A healthy dose of running, jumping, and dancing keeps them active too.

Prekindergarten Programs (4 – 5 Years)

Prekindergartners are preparing for the adventure of a lifetime – school. And our Early Foundations Prekindergarten® program is designed to get them ready by teaching letters and words, math concepts, and valuable social skills. With small group instruction, independent play in an organized atmosphere, and whole-group activities, children will have all the right skills to hop, skip, and jump right into kindergarten.

Before- & After-School Programs (5 – 12 Years)

Even after school's out for the day, children need to be engaged in a comfortable, yet stimulating environment. That's where our Catch the Wave® program comes in. This innovative before – and after-school program allows school-age children to balance learning and fun through a variety of experiences. From homework help to fun physical activities, our program is designed so that everyone goes home happy.

Interactive Kindergarten (5 - 6 Years)

A full-day interactive Kindergarten program that utilizes new curriculum with an interactive smart board making first grade readiness a priority.

Summer Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)

Don’t miss out on KinderCare’s Summer of Wonder: Six themed programs that will make summer exciting, educational and tons of fun. Whether your child is in our preschool, Pre-K or school-age programs, all of it is designed to help children learn while soaking up the fun. We offer flexible scheduling options to meet the needs of busy families like yours so we hope to see you there.

Participating Child Care Aware Center

KinderCare has partnered with Child Care Aware® of America in an effort to offer fee assistance for Active Duty military families and solutions to their child care needs when care at a Child Development Center on the installation is not available.

Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program

Cooking

The Cooking Adventures program gives children opportunities to participate in fun, developmentally appropriate cooking experiences. They will learn about recipes, ingredients, cooking vocabulary, and the importance of a healthy diet. The curriculum includes lessons on picnics, pizza, and heart-healthy meals.

Math

The Math Adventures enrichment program is designed to teach important mathematics concepts such as geometry, numbers, measurement, and probability. Your child will learn about length, height, and weight. He will learn about shapes and solids. He will learn how to add, subtract, multiply, and count money. Math is everywhere and giving your child every advantage now will add up to success later in life.

Music

Ongoing research proves that early exposure to music helps children think, reason, create, and express themselves. Children will laugh and learn about rhythm, vocal melodies, and a variety of musical genres and instruments, which can lower stress and advance memory. Learning never sounded so good.

Phonics & Reading Adventures

Set your child up for advanced success with literacy through phonics, the study of letters and sounds. Reader books, games, and activity cards help your child understand the basics of vowels and blending syllables, giving him confidence and command of language.

Spanish

Spanish Adventures provides young learners with a foundation for later success with the Spanish language. Music, games, children's Spanish literature, and other tools give children multiple opportunities to hear, practice, and see Spanish language for vocabulary and conversational development. Curriculum includes lessons on greetings, numbers, colors, animals, family, body parts and pets as well as how to get engage conversationally during common scenarios at home, a restaurant, or at the zoo. Qué pasa?

School Age Tutoring

Teachers & Staff

Our staff welcomes all families and children into our classrooms. They are available anytime to offer a tour of their classroom or answer any questions about the class or curriculum.

  • Heidi Cusworth

    Heidi Cusworth, Center Director

    Year Started:
    1/1/1991
    Tenure:
    26 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    22 Years
  • Shelley Wright

    Shelley Wright, Assistant Director

    Shelley has worked for KinderCare Education at many levels. She finds her current position as Assistant Director fulfilling because she gets to interact with all of the parents, children and staff.

    Previous Experience:
    Shelley has worked for KinderCare Education in many capacities over the last sixteen years
    Year Started:
    1/1/1997
    Tenure:
    20 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    21 Years
    Education:
    Early Childhood Education Credits, Child Development Associate Credential
  • Ms. Terry, Infant Classroom

    Ms. Terry began working with children in 2001. Infants and Toddlers are her passion. In 2010, Ms. Terry joined the team at the West Union KinderCare, first as the Lead Teacher in Toddler classroom and then moved to the Infant room as soon as the position became available. Ms. Terry studied Early Childhood Education at Maricopa Community College. She also focused some of her studies on nutrition. Providing a stimulating, loving, safe and clean environment is extremely important to her. It is also important for Ms. Terry to ensure smooth transitions from school to home and vice versa, by communicating effectively and thoroughly with parents about their baby.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2010
    Tenure:
    7 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    12 Years
  • Ms. Lanaya, Toddler Classroom

    Ms. Lanaya joined KinderCare in 2009. Since then she has worked mostly with Infants and Toddlers. She is the Lead Toddler Teacher. Ms. Lanaya enjoys working at KinderCare because of the entire staff. It is a professional group that works together for the benefit of the children who attend our school. In particular Ms. Lanaya enjoys teaching at KinderCare because of the curriculum. She has completed Early Childhood Education courses at Portland Community College and is currently enrolled to complete her child development associate credential with Rasmussen University.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2009
    Tenure:
    8 Years
    Education:
    Early Childhood Education Courses, Pursuing Child Development Associate Credential
  • Ms. Brittany, Preschool Classroom

    Ms. Brittany joined KinderCare in 2010. Prior to arriving here, she worked for various other childcare companies for five years. Her experience has been with Toddlers, Two-year-old and Three-year-old children. Ms. Brittany enjoys working at KinderCare because of the high standards and the curriculum. It is exciting to know she is offering the very best for the children every day. KinderCare Education has provided Ms. Brittany with excellent continuing training and education since she was hired. This has definitely impacted her teaching style and methods for the benefit of the children in her care. Ms. Brittany finds her day fly by since she made the move to the Preschool B classroom. Three-year-old children are the greatest, most energetic, curious and excited people on the planet.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2010
    Tenure:
    7 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    5 Years
  • Ms. Dipa, Prekindergarten Classroom

    Ms. Dipa has a Master's Degree in English Literature from University of Calcutta. She also has one year of bachelor's of education training from the same university. Ms. Dipa is currently the Lead Prekindergarten teacher. She started working for KinderCare in 2000. Ms. Dipa was here the day the school opened. She has worked in multiple capacities, even, for a time, as acting Center Director. It has been a wonderful journey so far. Ms. Dipa enjoys working with children, teaching them and contributing to building our future generation. She tries to provide the best experience that a child might expect each day.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2000
    Tenure:
    17 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    13 Years
    Education:
    Master's Degree in English Literature, Bachelor's of Education Training
  • Ms. Lisa, Prekindergarten Classroom

    I love teaching the children and especially love teaching math. I particularly enjoy teaching academics in an encouraging and nurturing environment. It is important to me to provide the best I can each day for the children in my classroom. I want all of my children to feel welcome and safe enough to take risks as they learn. I don't want children to worry about making mistakes and worry about doing everything 'right' while learning in my classroom.

    Ms. Lisa has a bachelor of arts degree in Liberal Studies with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education from Portland State University. She graduated in 2009. Prior to joining KinderCare Ms. Lisa worked for a Head Start program in Vermont and an Early Childhood program in Tennessee. She joined KinderCare in May of 2012 as the Lead Teacher in the Prekindergarten classroom.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2012
    Tenure:
    5 Years
    Education:
    Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Liberal Studies
  • Ms. Alla, Private Kindergarten Classroom

    The past two years at the West Union KinderCare have been very fulfilling for me. The quality teaching team and supportive management make teaching here wonderful. The community and families at West Union are the best. It is a fantastic partnership we share in educating and growing the children at West Union.

    Ms. Alla began teaching Kindergarten for KinderCare in 1991. She loves teaching the KinderCare Kindergarten curriculum. She tried out the Management positions within the company but found that she could not leave teaching.

    Year Started:
    1/1/1991
    Tenure:
    26 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    22 Years
    Education:
    Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology & Sociology, Bachelor's of Arts Degree in Elementary Education
  • Ms. Kiersten, Private Kindergarten Classroom

    Ms. Kiersten graduated from NAU in 2012 with a degree in Elementary and Special Education. Being the oldest daughter of three, taking care of children has always been a passion for her. Ms. Kiersten is excited to be at KinderCare and to provide your children with the best Prekindergarten year possible. She started at KinderCare in 2007. At that time Ms. Kiersten worked in the Infant room. She returned in late 2012 and very quickly after took over the "late for date" Kindergarten children. It is important to Ms. Kiersten to provide the children with a safe place to learn, grow and explore. If there is one thing she feels she truly wishes to provide is an environment where the children feel safe enough to take risks, make mistakes and grow.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2007
    Tenure:
    10 Years
    Education:
    Degree in Elementary and Special Education
  • Ms. Michele, School Age Classroom

    I know that when things are working exactly the way I hope then the children and I are learning and growing together. That is when we have magic in our classroom. School Age children can be independent but still need help and guidance. It is fulfilling to watch them grow in independence. It is always fulfilling when I know I have brought them something new to discover and learn.

    Ms. Michele graduated from Boise Bible College in 2009 with a bachelor of arts degree in education. She has been a teacher in Early Childhood Education since 2001 and joined this KinderCare team in 2012. The reason Ms. Michele work's with children and will always work with children is because she wants to make a difference in their lives. She knows that her experience and her passion makes her School Age classroom the best.

    Year Started:
    1/1/2012
    Tenure:
    5 Years
    Years in ECE industry:
    12 Years
    Education:
    Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education
  • Ms. Marianne, Floater

    Ms. Marianne pleased to be joining the KinderCare team! She obtained a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Early Childhood Education from St. Cloud State University in Minnesota and a Master's Degree in Education from Santa Clara University in California. Ms. Marianne taught in the Cupertino School District (California) for ten years prior to moving to Portland with her family. She spent most of that time teaching first grade but had experience with children in grades Prekindergarten to eight grade. Ms. Marianne has taught all subjects but her specialty is teaching early literacy skills. She loves to incorporate music into her lessons as often as possible. Ms. Marianne's passion for teaching comes from her love of the learning experience. She finds children to be naturally curious and feels that they should be free to inquire, explore and think critically. Ms. Marianne believes that every child should be treated with respect and dignity and should feel important.

    Years in ECE industry:
    10 Years
    Education:
    Master's Degree in Education, Bachelor's of Science Degree in Early Childhood Education
  • Ms. Hanni, Floater

    My entire life has encompassed caring for, teaching and nurturing children of all ages. I was an active volunteer for my own four children's schools and athletic activities before entering the childcare field. My goal is to expand my knowledge and grow in the childcare field by continuing my experience and education.

    Ms. Hanni comes to us with four years of experience in Early Childhood Education. Her experience is with children two and under for the most part and also includes some time in a management role for an early childhood program. Currently Ms. Hanni is a Step 5 in the Oregon Registry, with 120 hours of early childhood education

    Years in ECE industry:
    4 Years
    Education:
    120-Hour Early Childhood Education Units

Upcoming Center Activities

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April
April's Learning Focus

Children 6 weeks to 3 years old: Growing Gardens

What better time to explore the beauty and science of flowers and gardens than the spring? Infants’ learning will focus on sensory experiences with different plants and flowers, while toddlers and three-year-olds have the opportunity to learn how to care for plants. We’ll plant seeds in soil, water the plants, observe bugs and discover how they help plants grow, and even plant a butterfly garden outside! We’ll build math skills by counting seeds, learn new vocabulary words related to flowers and plants, and as always, sing songs and read books involving gardens. 

Children 4–5 years old: In the Spring + Wild Animals

For children in the Preschool and Transitional Kindergarten Classrooms, April is about exploring all things spring and discovering wild animals! Preschoolers will look for signs of spring outdoors, make mud cakes and count the twigs placed in them, and paint still-life paintings of things related to spring. When our learning turns to wild animals, we’ll learn about the habitats and habits of creatures big and small while maintaining a focus on learning lowercase letters. 

The older children in Transitional Kindergarten will focus on project-related work and pick something to work on together. In years past, children have painted a mural, made spring parade floats, painted wild animal masks, and created a model of a wild animal’s habitat. Both of these units focus on expanding the children’s understanding of the natural world around them.

Monday April 10, 2017
Come get a sneak peek of summer at KinderCare during our Open House event, from April 10th – 14th.

At KinderCare, our summer adventures are designed for learning and fun. We love taking our experiments outside, having special guests visit our centers, and even exploring our senses on walks outside or by rolling around in the cool grass. We can’t wait to meet you and show you what makes our centers special and why we would love to spend our summer with you!

About Our Center

Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and through the various training opportunities in the community.

Languages Spoken at Our Center

  • German
  • Hindi
  • Spanish

Meals & Menus

Meals Served

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • PM Snack

Holidays Observed

We observe the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • President's Day
  • Memorial Day
  • 4th of July
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Day after Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Day

Please note that because holidays observed may vary between centers, please be sure to check with your Center Director for specific closures.

Health and Safety

All of our staff are CPR/First Aid certified. We are a newer school so we meet all the State of Oregon Childcare Division regulations without needing "grandfathering" with the State of Oregon as many older schools require.

At KinderCare, what families say about us means a lot. Read below some of the great experiences our families have had with us.

Share Your Story
If you have a story about your experience at KinderCare, please share your story with us.

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Our staff would like to welcome you to visit our center. The staff takes pride in keeping up to date with the latest trends in Early Childhood Education. Ongoing training is offered to the staff during the year at the center and though the various training opportunities in the community.

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