Jessica Arens, Center Director
Meet Jessica Arens, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2017
Education: Bachelor's Degree
Favorite Children's Book: The Monster at the End of This Book
Meet Jessica Arens! She is the Center Director at Northeast KinderCare in Lincoln, Nebraska. Jessica attended Rasmussen College, where she earned an Early Childhood Education credential. She has been with KinderCare since 2017. Every day, Jessica enjoys helping children learn and discover their true potential. Her favorite quote is, “I can do things you cannot. You can do things I cannot. Together we can do great things.” – Mother Theresa. Outside of work, Jessica enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and visiting the Omaha Zoo.
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!
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!
Our two children started at Northeast KinderCare in Lincoln, NE shortly after a move from out-of-state. While we have had a great experience overall at the center, Ms. Teresa in the prekindergarten room is amazing! Our son is a different kid since being in her classroom. He is happy and confident. He has made huge strides in his verbal skills and his ability to write letters and draw discernible pictures. He talks with enthusiasm about the things he does at school and about the friends he has made. He even declined a "skip day" to go to the children's museum with Grandma who was visiting from Texas because he wanted to go to school. Ms. Teresa empowers the children and loves them for who they are and where they are in their own development.”
Emily O. - KinderCare Parent
Our two children, now five and three, started at KinderCare as infants. As the time progressed there, it became evident that this was so much more than a daycare. Through KinderCare, our children have been exposed to social skills, structure, creativity, compassion, and the foundations of learning. They even got to take a cooking class and partake in swimming lessons! I am convinced that KinderCare has been instrumental in my five-year-old's smooth transition to kindergarten. Above all, Bernie and her staff have given us the gift of trust. We cannot thank them enough!”
Nicole F. - KinderCare Parent
I want to express my appreciation for the wonderful job that the Northeast KinderCare staff does taking care of my two children. Moving to a state with no family and no support makes it kind of scary when you have to leave your children while at work with others, but after looking and touring numerous daycare centers, I had to make a decision and I'm very happy I chose KinderCare. When I walked into the center for open house, I immediately felt welcomed. The staff and Directors are so awesome, and it feels good to see that they all have fun and learn at the same time. If you are looking for a place for your little ones, KinderCare is the place where your child will feel loved and safe, while learning many skils to prepare them for there road ahead! Thank you, KinderCare!”
Crystal J. - KinderCare Parent
I wanted to write to share just how happy my husband, Chris, and I are with the care that our daughters, Reagan and Peyton, receive from their teachers and all the other wonderful staff at Northeast KinderCare. When my husband and I found out we were pregnant with our first child, I immediately knew where I wanted to have our baby attend daycare. Not only did I receive an excellent recommendation from my sister, Erin, who had brought her children to KinderCare, but it is also the same center she and I attended as children ourselves, which I only have fond memories of. When we visited the center, I was sold after meeting Bernie, the wonderful teachers, and hearing about all of the great things that KinderCare had to offer. I love that it is not a place that is simply “babysitting” our children, but instead, they are being taught, cared for, and loved! In fact, it has become quite the family affair because our youngest sister, Rachel, now brings her daughter to KinderCare as well. As difficult as it is to leave my children somewhere while I go to work, I never worry about the care they are receiving. Every morning I drop my girls off, we are greeted with smiles and I am amazed how the teachers and staff members know all of the children by name, even though they may not be in the classroom with them. There are many children at the center, yet the teachers take the time to know all of the children individually, which I find extremely special. Not only do my husband and I love the care our girls receive, but it is obvious our children do too. My daughter shrieks with excitement every morning we walk in and she sees Carla for the first time. My other daughter always comes home with stories about her day and what she did with her friends and teachers. Anytime we drive by KinderCare, she will point and scream “my school”! It is amazing how much she has learned the past two and a half years from your center. I honestly cannot give enough wonderful praises for Bernie, Reagan and Peyton’s teachers, or the rest of the KinderCare staff! Thank you so much for all you do for our precious girls, and the other children at the center. In case we don’t say it enough, you are all truly appreciated.”
Ashley and Chris T. - KinderCare Parent
My name is Ava, I have been coming to KinderCare for about 10 years; I have met many new friends. "Well, what if my kids have allergies, like peanuts?" Tammy’s got you covered. Tammy is in the kitchen most of the time. If your kid does have allergies, just talk to Bernie Olin, the Director of the center. "Boy, it’s a hot summer day--it's 100 degrees Fahrenheit." The kids will not be able to go outside because 92 is the limit. Yes, your child will be wearing sunscreen. There are many different kinds of classrooms; infants are right when you walk in to your right. A little bit down the hall is the Toddler room. The next room would be the two's. Straight down is the three's room. Now to your left is the kitchen, four's, five's, and school-age. Outside is a wonderful place to be. We have balls, four-corners, sand table, a jungle gym, and a bike path that’s just the for four's, five's, and school-age. Along the fence are bikes, slides, and a jungle gym. That’s for the toddlers and twos. KinderCare has taught me how to read and write. They offer phonics and cooking, and now my brother does phonics. They serve breakfast, lunch, and snack after nap time. Nap time is two hours for four's, five's, toddlers, two's, and infants. If you have any questions, please ask Bernie Olin or Brittney Cambern.”
Ava B. - KinderCare Parent
Thank you, Northeast KinderCare! At a most difficult time for my four-year-old son, in the middle of a custody case, he had great separation anxiety, especially with drop-offs at preschool. KinderCare provided a safe environment where I felt good about where my son would be during his time in preschool, with a keypad entry system, clean and very well-equipped classrooms, great meals, and great staff/teachers, who helped tremendously with transitioning my four-year-old to feeling okay about being dropped off at preschool. He made a special bond with his teacher, who went over and above to help him each morning at drop-offs, quickly engaging him so I could get to work without him having a huge meltdown. He made friends with other children in his class, as well as the other staff at KinderCare, who all make the effort to know the kids' names. When the regular school year ended for public schools, KinderCare provided a summer program to continue regular preschool attendance, which was amazing to keep my son accustomed to being dropped off at school. It was a long process to where he finally does great when it's time for school, so it would not have been good to then have three months off for school holidays, so the KinderCare summer program kept him going through the summer months with many great activities and field trips, leading up to transitioning to kindergarten in public school. I have three children, with my four-year-old being the youngest, so I was amazed at how many drawing projects the kids do, giving us a great little pile of art projects to put in a school book in comparison to public preschool, which my two older children attended. KinderCare provided a great preschool program, which I feel has given my four-year-old a great head start on his school years. He has mastered all of the fundamentals that my two older children learned at public preschool. However, I felt that my four-year-old had it the best by attending KinderCare and he came to like going to school, even on days when it was optional through summer holidays, and my four-year-old and I would often say he has "the best school ever!" Thank you, KinderCare, for making preschool a great experience for my son.”
Maree 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.