Lisa McMillen, Center Director
Ages: 6 weeks to 12 years
Elementary Schools Bussed To:
Emerson, Field, Hawthorne, Lincoln, Jefferson, Jackson, Edison, *subject to change, not necessarily both drop off and pick up*
Our center is accredited by NAEYC.
Meet Lisa McMillen, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2002
Education: Associate's Degree in Early Childhood Education.
Favorite Children's Book: I'll Love You Forever
Meet Lisa McMillen! Lisa is the Center Director at Elmhurst KinderCare in Illinois. She attended Triton College, where she earned her associate degree in Early Childhood Education. Lisa has been with KinderCare for nineteen years now. Her favorite quote is, "Learning is not a race for information, it's a walk of discovery." When she is not working, Lisa loves to watch her three children’s outdoor sports games, and enjoys being outdoors with her family.
AMERICA’S MOST ACCREDITED
Nationally only 10% of daycares are accredited - nearly 100% of our learning centers are. That’s a big difference, and that means KinderCare kids are getting the very best. Here’s why.
Infant Programs (6 weeks–1 year)
Leaving your baby in someone else’s care is a big step. Everyone at our centers—most importantly, our naturally gifted infant teachers—will work with you to make sure the transition goes smoothly. When you step into our infant classroom, you’ll see how much we want your infant to feel safe, loved, and ready to explore their world.
Toddler Programs (1–2 Years)
Everything in our toddler classroom is designed for little explorers. That’s because a lot is going on at this age. When your child is wandering all over the place, that means they’re learning and discovering new things every day. We’ll help them explore their interests (and find new ones!) as they play and learn.
Discovery Preschool Programs (2–3 Years)
This age is filled with so much wonder and curiosity. That’s why we offer a ton of books and toys and bring artwork down to kids eye level. Children in discovery preschool also begin to learn how we all work together in a classroom. Simple math and science, pretend play, and group play help them get used to a more structured school setting.
Preschool Programs (3–4 Years)
This age is all about expression, when kids really start to form their own ideas about what they want to play and how they want to create. Every day in our preschool classroom, your child will explore science experiments, create artwork, and play pretend—all the skills needed for their big next step: kindergarten!
Prekindergarten Programs (4–5 Years)
When you walk into one of our pre-K classrooms, you’ll see artwork and writing displayed around the room. Labels are everywhere to help kids connect letters with words. You’ll also see pictures on the walls that reflect the families in our community. Your child will also deepen their knowledge in language, math, science, Spanish, and social skills.
Before- and After-School Programs (5–12 Years)
You can count on us to provide reliable care for your school-ager while you’re at work, with safe transportation from our center to your child’s school and back! Whether your child wants to start a drama club, build a volcano, or create a comic book, they will have a place to follow their dreams. Your child will start and end the day with a whole lot of fun!
Interactive Kindergarten (5–6 Years)
Kindergarten is a critical year for young learners. Experienced KinderCare teachers will tap into your child’s natural curiosity to help get them even more prepared for elementary school. Our engaging lessons make the most of current technology while offering plenty of hands-on play and exploration.
School Break Programs (preschool, prekindergarten, and school-age)
Winter break, spring break, summer break—when school’s out (but you still need to work), you can count on KinderCare to provide a safe and supportive learning environment that’s focused on fun. We welcome children ages 5–12 during school break times and make sure they have a sensational, screen-free experience they won’t forget.
Participating Child Care Aware Center
KinderCare partners with Child Care Aware® of America to offer fee assistance for Active Duty military families and flexible support to fit their needs when care at a Child Development Center on the installation is not available.
Elementary School Distance Learning
Healthy bodies, happy hearts, growing minds. We make distance learning easy on your whole family! Our teachers are trained to facilitate safe and dynamic learning experiences online and in-person. Since every school has their own learning plan, we’ve added flexible enrollment options to meet your family’s needs. Whether you choose to enroll full-time, part-time, or before and after school, we’re here for you!
Learning Adventures - Enrichment Program
Cooking Academy™ (3 – 12 Years)
In Cooking Academy, kids learn new recipes from cultures around the world and develop a healthy relationship with food. They’ll whip up everything from Southwest rainbow lettuce wraps to pumpkin muffins, building their skills in STEM, communication, and more along the way. And yes—little chefs get to eat their culinary creations!
Music Explorers™ (2 – 4 Years)
KinderCare families are already giving a standing ovation to our newest Learning Adventures program: Music Explorers! Kids will learn to sing, move, listen, play instruments, and even create their own tunes. Our original curriculum blends math, science, social studies, literacy, and mindfulness (think yoga!) for a uniquely KinderCare way of learning the foundations of music.
Phonics Adventures® (2 – 4 Years)
Learning how to read is a whole lot of fun at KinderCare! We help kids grow to love books and words (and get ready for kindergarten) in our Phonics Adventures program. From discovering the basics of vowels to practicing poetry, kids learn all about letters and sounds in small-group lessons made just for their age group. (Bonus: Kids who attend our phonics program are more prepared than their peers for school—and we have the data to prove it.)
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 to develop vocabulary and conversation skills. Curriculum includes lessons on greetings, numbers, colors, animals, family, body parts, and pets, as well as how to engage conversationally during common scenarios at home, a restaurant, or at the zoo.
STEM Innovators (3-8 Years)
You’ve probably heard a lot about how important STEM education is for your child, but what does that really mean? Our STEM Innovators program takes kids’ natural ability to make sense of the world and applies it to robotics, chemistry, coding, geology, and more. While your child experiments, they’ll discover how to use technology to do amazing things!
We're the only company in early childhood education to select teachers based on natural talent. Being a great educator isn't enough though. KinderCare teachers are also amazing listeners, nurturers, boo-boo fixers, and smile-makers. Put more simply, we love our teachers and your child will, too.
Meet just a few of our amazing KinderCare teachers!
A KINDERCARE TEACHER WITH
An Artist's Heart
"My classroom is full of art!” says Mary Annthipie-Bane, an award-winning early childhood educator at KinderCare. Art and creative expression, she says, help children discover who they really are.
We put our best-in-class teachers in a best-in-class workplace. We're so proud to have been named one of Gallup's 37 winners of the Great Workplace Award. When you put great teachers in an engaging center, your children will experience an amazing place to learn and grow.
Don't take our word for it. Hear what our families have to say about our amazing center!
Dear Members of Our KinderCare Family,
I wish to take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything you have done for both Elyssa and me. Given that we do not have family in the area; the teachers and staff at KinderCare have served as Elyssa’s “second parent.” As many of you know, Elyssa is adopted. What you probably do not know is that I went from a single woman who knew nothing about children (and I mean nothing), to a mother with a three month old child in less than one hour. In less than two days, Miss Stacey was able to secure Elyssa a spot in the infant room and thus our journey with KinderCare began. Honestly, I am not certain Elyssa would have survived without Miss Margarita. Knowing nothing about how to raise a child, not to mention feed one, I did exactly what they told me to do. I would frantically take notes as one of them outlined Elyssa’s evening routine and feeding schedule. They informed me of what to look for in her diaper and when to take her to the pediatrician. Miss Margarita would tell me “go home and feed her this, she likes it now”; or “go buy her Cheerios. I gave them to her and she loves them.” Miss Margarita was the first to see Elyssa’s first tooth. When she told me I cried because I was so glad it was her. My tears soon dissipated as I asked, “do I have to do anything with it and if so what?”
Elyssa was so fortunate to have had Miss Colleen for almost three years. Her ability to really get to know Elyssa was, in my opinion, the key to Elyssa’s development and growth. The patience and understanding she exhibited was remarkable! No matter what, she was always there to help Elyssa work through any difficulty she was experiencing even when Elyssa was no longer a student in her classroom. I will never forget the evening I was putting Elyssa to bed (she was four at the time) and she told me that she “loved Miss Colleen because she made her feel happy and safe.” That in turn made me feel safe and for that I am forever grateful.
I would also like to extend a special thank you to Miss. Sharline, Miss Linda, and Mr. Vince for never giving up on Elyssa and continuing to guide her through a very difficult time and transition. Thank you for aiding in her growth and development and for being so incredibly patient and tolerant of the difficulties she was experiencing. Elyssa is not necessarily an easy child to parent and/or teach at times. But you never gave up on her. Miss Sharline, thank you for your sophisticated insight and guidance. You were always extremely positive and I walked away from each of our conversations believing that things would get better. You were so right!
Elyssa was extremely fortunate to spend to spend the summer in Miss Maureen’s class and is currently in her afternoon Kindergarten class. She is flourishing in this environment! I am blessed that Elyssa was provided the opportunity to work with Miss Maureen. I appreciate the friendship I have developed with her and know that she always “goes the extra mile” which has significantly impacted Elyssa’s development in a very short period of time.
There are no words to express how thankful I am for the opportunities that Miss Lisa and Miss Stacey have provided for Elyssa. Without this staff, I am certain that Elyssa would not be where she is today. All of you who have taught her or interacted with her have had a hand in making her the very special person that she is. Together we have produced an extremely warm, caring, loving, and creative child.
I am so fortunate that Elyssa has a place to go where she is happy and feels comfortable, safe and loved.
Thank you to each and every one of you. You have been and continue to be our guardian angels.
With sincere gratitude,”
Heather H. - KinderCare Parent
I would like to share my thoughts on KinderCare as a mother of 3 young children, all of whom attend KinderCare. My husband and I entrusted our children's daily activities, well-being and safety to the dedicated teachers and staff that makes up the center. This of course was not any matter to be taken lightly and proved to have many factors surrounding the decision-making process. In unquestionably the most formative years of their lives, we wanted to ensure that our children would feel comfortable in this environment in order to establish a secure relationship with their teachers on every level - a relationship full of support, love, structure and learning. What could be more important than having your children in Quality childcare which will give them the tools they will need to succeed in school later on in life. KinderCare is our choice for many reasons. The most important reason however is that our children have clearly developed into intelligent, social and happy little individuals. We owe this in part to KinderCare without a doubt! Our children truly enjoy attending and even talk about their teachers when they come home after a long day. that speaks volumes. I realized that the childcare we choice was an excellent one and that our children were in the best hands they could be next to our own.”
Kelli P. - KinderCare Parent
I wanted to take a few minutes to thank you and your staff for the past year of care you all have provided to both of my children. Specifically, Miss Teuta deserves special recognition for her role in Brody’s amazing development over the past year. When Brody started at KinderCare he was 21 months old and a very young “Two” in Miss Teuta’s room. From the beginning, Miss Teuta took extra care to make sure he was not lost in the group of older and much more verbal children. Although he was not very verbal at 21 months, she immediately noticed he knew his letters and numbers and gently encouraged him to use his words to express his thoughts. She encouraged him to participate in group time without stifling his thirst for individual play. Her flexibility and patience were evident immediately. He very quickly felt part of the group and in the process grew close to Miss Teuta. Early on I would ask Brody who his best friend was, and he would proudly exclaim, “Miss Teuta!” This is not unique to Brody. Anyone who walks into her room will hear a chorus of “Toota, Toota…” followed by any number of comments or requests. The kids love her almost as much as she loves them. Even so, it didn’t take long for me to see that she practices just the right amount of sternness to temper her kindness. She has clearly mastered a higher understanding of the two year-old mind. As is the case with all two year-old children, Brody is a very stubborn child. However, speaking as a mother who has watched her child hold his breath until he passed out in a fit of rage, I think I have earned the right to say he may have a little more stamina than most. Miss Teuta has handled him amazingly. She and I regularly had extensive conversations about his experiences in her classroom. Because she knew his personality, we waited until he was ready and used a “full-steam-ahead” approach to potty training. It was quick and painless and I feel like Miss Teuta coached me through the process just as much as Brody. This was such a success because she truly took the time to get to know my child and the way his mind works. Miss Teuta is no pushover and I admire her for that. Towards the end of his stay in her room I began to worry that his bond with her was so strong that it may complicate his transition to the next classroom. Of course, I underestimated Miss Teuta. She gently coached him until he was asking every day to visit the “Three’s”. She played a major role in creating the independent and outgoing three year-old boy that Brody is today and the loving bond she created with him was strengthened by her ability to recognize he was ready for a new experience. I believe anyone who works with two year-old children is a saint, but someone who does it as well as Miss Teuta should be commended. She is gentle, yet firm. She has high expectations, yet practices understanding. And she loves these kids as if they are her own. This much can been seen by the mark she has left on my son. Miss Teuta is a very special and gifted teacher and should be recognized for the amazing effort she puts forth every day. KinderCare is very lucky to have her.”
Heather M. - KinderCare Parent
Who Are KinderCare Families?
They hail from hundreds of cities across the country from countless backgrounds, and proudly represent every walk in life. What our families have in common, though, is the want to give their children the best start in life. We are so proud to be their partner in parenting.
Hear from just a few of our amazing KinderCare families.
A Globe-Trotting Family Finds A
Home in Houston
Four young children, four different passports, two languages, two full-time jobs…oh, and a few triathlons thrown in for good measure. Meet the globe-trotting Colettas—a family on the go.