Mary Villarreal, Center Director
Meet Mary Villarreal, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 1994
Education: Child Development Associate Credential
Favorite Children's Book: The Bad Seed
Meet Mary Villarreal! She is the Center Director at Clear Lake KinderCare in Houston, TX. Mary attended San Jacinto College and Texas Southern University and holds a Child Development Associate credential. She has been with KinderCare since 1994. Every day, Mary looks forward to meeting new families and helping children discover their true potential. "All your dreams can come true, if you have the courage to pursue them." – Walt Disney. Outside of work, Mary enjoys shopping, fishing, and having dinner on the water.
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.
Clear Lake KinderCare Programs
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!
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.)
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!
As a single mother, it is very rewarding to know that my son is in good hands as I leave him every morning. We are greeted with love and open arms each day, and I always receive kind words in the evening about his day. The family activities that are offered each month are fun for both my son and I--it is a great way to see him in his element and gives me a chance to talk to the teachers. Ms. Mary and Ms. Claudia, along with their team, have high-quality care.”
Tina & Andrew - KinderCare Parent
We love Clear Lake KinderCare and are extremely grateful to all the teachers who have cared for our boys (who are now two and three), since they were eight weeks old. KinderCare has definitely been more of an extended family. Our boys love each and every teacher, and the teachers show the same feeling in return. Our boys love going there and sometimes, when we arrive to pick them up, it's hard to get them to leave. That speaks volumes. We know that when we drop our kids off, they are in excellent hands!”
Christine - KinderCare Parent
My child has been attending the after-school program at Clear Lake KinderCare and she loves it. She always raves about the fun after-school activities that are offered and the delicious snacks. I appreciate that the teacher (Ms. Franseca) takes the time to help my daughter with her homework every day. She is also looking forward to the fun summer activities and field trips. Safety is a big concern of mine, and Ms. Mary (Director) and Ms. Claudia (Assistant Director) go the extra mile to make sure they manage a safe place for children, even going as far as checking the buses every day after returning from drop-off in the morning and checking as well in the afternoon when the children arrive at the center. Ms. Mary and her staff go beyond customer service!”
Johns - KinderCare Parent
Clear Lake KinderCare has been a great place for my family. My two-year-old has been here since she was five months old. She loves her teachers and has grown up with the friends in her class. Her favorite time of the day is story time with her teacher. She is always sitting as close as she can get! She also enjoys dancing to music and creating art projects. My eight-year-old is in the before- and after-school program. He enjoys riding the bus to school and spending time with the friends he has made. We are welcomed each morning by the staff as the kids are settled into their breakfast routine. I think it's great that my two kids get to eat together in spite of their age difference. The KinderCare staff teach and love my children like their own!”
Stevenson Family - KinderCare Parent
I have been really impressed with the amount of care and individualized learning that I have seen in my toddler since being at Clear Lake KinderCare. Each week she tells me something new that she has learned while at school, like singing the months of the year. I haven't met another two-year-old who can sing all the months of the year and I cannot take credit for that!”
Ashley B. - KinderCare Parent
My child has attended the KinderCare on El Camino in Houston, Texas, since January of 2013. He was six months when he began and it was his first time in child care. My husband and I have been constantly impressed with the quality of care our son has received. What we love most is that even though our son is a baby, all of the instructors have really gotten to know and understand him as an individual, and given him the sort of care and attention that he needs. It is so clear that the instructors love all the kids and babies.”
Susanna L. - 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.
Frequently Asked Questions
What accreditations does KinderCare have?
We are your trusted caregiver. Our centers are state-licensed and regularly inspected to make sure everything meets or exceeds standards, including child-to-teacher ratios and safe facilities. Our centers aren’t just licensed—most are accredited, too! Find out more.
Do you offer part-time schedules at Clear Lake KinderCare?
Everybody’s schedule is different. We’re happy to offer quality, affordable part-time and full-time childcare. Drop-in care may also be available. Reach out to your Center Director to learn more.
How does naptime work at Clear Lake KinderCare?
Our teachers meet every child’s needs during naptime. Our teachers know how to get babies to nap. In fact, they are pros at getting children of any age to nap. Visit our article on "10 Ways We Help Kids Get a Great Daycare Nap" to learn more.
Do you support alternative diets?
We strive to be as inclusive as possible. To that point, we provide a vegetarian option at mealtime, take care to not serve common allergens and can adapt menus based on your child’s food sensitivities. If your child has additional needs, we’ll work with you to figure out a plan.
Are meals included in tuition? Can I choose to send my child with lunch?
We provide nutritious meals and snacks developed by a registered dietician to meet the needs of rapidly growing bodies and minds. If your child has special dietary requirements and you would prefer to bring in their lunch, please make arrangements with the center director.
Does my child need to be potty-trained?
Every child begins toilet learning at a different age. Until your child shows an interest in toilet learning, we’ll provide diaper changes on an as-needed basis. When your child shows an interest, we'll discuss how to work together to encourage toilet learning.