Kristen Amaral, Center Director
Meet Kristen Amaral, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2012
Education: Associate of Science
Favorite Children's Book: The Little Engine that Could
Meet Kristen Amaral! She is the Center Director at Petaluma KinderCare in California. Kristen attended Rasmussen College, where she earned an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education. She has been with KinderCare for eight years, and before that she was a substitute teacher. Every day, Kristen enjoys helping children discover their true potential. Outside of work, Kristen enjoys hiking, crafting, reading, baking, and spending time 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.
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.)
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!
I am a first-time mother who went back to work full time after our daughter was born in July 2015. We, my infant girl and I, have been attending KinderCare in Petaluma for about eight weeks now. I can't tell you enough how incredible and wonderful your staff is at this facility. Being a first-time mother, I was very anxious about returning to work and the options I had for infant care are very limited. I was so fortunate to have contacted KinderCare and toured the facility many months in advance, to prepare for when I would return to work. The staff at KinderCare is truly amazing. They knew my name and child right away and made us feel "right at home" during a difficult transition time for us. They are considerate and supportive, extremely knowledgeable and offer incredibly focused attention on my little girl and her needs while also fostering her sense of community, individual growth and development. I couldn't ever imagine the GIFT that KinderCare would be for her and us. At first, I was nervous that my "particular requests" for her care would get "lost" in the shuffle of caring for other infants, but right away the staff SHOWED me they had listened to my requests and treated me with total respect. I can't say enough how much this meant to me. My infant is getting the BEST care I could have ever imagined and knowing how she is being cared for by the KinderCare staff for has completely lain my anxiety and fears to rest and allows me the confidence to be back at work. They are always making sure they communicate with me observations of her, exciting developmental events and tracking her overall health. I don't know every person on the KinderCare staff by name; however, they have always all treated me with kindness and consideration. They are an exceptional group of individuals who deserve a special note of recognition in that they bring 150% to the table, each day and everyday. Your company has a very special resource in these individuals and I encourage you to recognize the "above and beyond" the staff offers just as a normal part of their daily approach to the children they care for. Thank you for the opportunity to express how wonderful the experience with KinderCare has been for our family.”
Brooke - KinderCare Parent
August 4, 2015
Dear KinderCare Management,
My husband and I wanted to tell you about two of your amazing teachers, Miss Susie and Miss Christina in the infant room. Our son Luke has been in the care of Miss Susie and Miss Christina since he was five months old and this will be his last week with them before he moves to the toddler room. We are so sad that Luke will no longer be with these two amazing teachers. He has grown so attached to Miss Susie and Miss Christina as these ladies treat the kids as if they are their own. Not only do they take great care of our son and all of the other infants, but they truly love each child and it definitely shows. Our son (and my husband and I) are greatly going to miss Susie and Christina.
Miss Susie and Miss Christina should definitely be recognized, as they are the ones that give KinderCare the excellent reputation that it has.
Rob, Ashley and Luke Brown
Ashley and Rob - KinderCare Parent
Dear Ms. Susie, Ms. Jenn, Ms. Rana, Ms. Cindy, Ms. Libby, and everyone at KinderCare,
A huge thanks to all of you for your care and support and answering questions. I felt like such a huge step to put Ani in daycare, but you guys treat her (and us) like family. You're all so warm and to have such a welcome reception has greatly reduced my fears. Thank you so much! We're so grateful!
Kate, Andy & Ani - 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.