Krista Giel, Center Director
Meet Krista Giel, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2011
Education: Bachelor's Degree
Favorite Children's Book: Love You Forever
Meet Krista Giel! She is the Center Director at North Hills KinderCare in Pittsburgh, PA. Krista attended Clarion University, where she earned a Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. She has been with KinderCare since 2011. "Don't give up because of one bad chapter in your life. Keep going...your story doesn't end here." Outside of work, Krista enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and teaching and learning from her children.
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.
North Hills 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!
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.
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!
When I ask my son Aidan, age 4, what he likes about Learning Adventures, he just says "it's awesome." And he's right, but there's more to the story. My son isn't just learning phonics or how to read, he's developing a positive, trusting relationship with a teacher and that gives him the confidence to try all kinds of new things. He asks me to help him write the names of people in our family, he tries to read words on menus, or when we go into stores, he looks at books by himself and tells me the story of what's happening. He often makes mistakes, but that doesn't stop him. And I feel like that is the really valuable lesson he is learning in his Learning Adventures classes. He is learning to love learning!
Elizabeth H. - KinderCare Parent
I can not say enough positive things about KinderCare North Hills, PA. The teachers make you feel so welcome, such a part of their family. My daughter who is two, is so excited each morning to go to school and the smile on her face when we arrive there each day, speaks volumes. As a first time parent, you never know what to expect, yet the teachers here have made it possible for us to continue our careers, feeling safe and secure in our decision to put our daughter in their care. We know she is well cared for, well fed, safe, and happy. The piece of mind that comes with utilizing KinderCare is priceless. Thank you all for all your do for the families in your centers everywhere.”
Nicole S. - KinderCare Parent
I have trouble putting into words how much gratitude I have for the staff. When we first enrolled our boys in the center just over two years ago, Ben was in Kindergarten and was not reading at the same level as his class mates. He was getting individualized attention at his elementary school but we decided to enroll him in phonics with Miss Kate. I am so glad we did. His teacher in 2nd grade has commented to me several times that he is one of his favorites as far as reading aloud is concerned. I credit a lot of this to Miss Kate and her helping him. He loves reading and will pick up a book whenever possible. The entire staff has also approached Joshua's hearing issues head on with us and seen the ups and downs we have faced over the last two years. There are teachers who have learned sign language to communicate with him before he received his hearing aids. They have never excluded him from activities even though he wasn't communicating the same as the other kids. I also am so thankful for Miss Becky and Miss Rachel who have learned how to care for hearing aids and am appreciative of him being in a great environment. I have asked several times by family members and friends if he will be moving to go to preschool somewhere else such as Western Pa School for the Deaf, but I can say that I feel he is getting a great start to his learning with the teachers here at KinderCare. As soon as the hearing aids were flipped on he was telling us color names and his friends. I know this is because of the great place he is!”
Heather - KinderCare Parent
My boys have a truly special relationship with the teachers at KinderCare. When you ask my two- year-old, who is best friend is at school, he says the names of his teachers! What a wonderful thing to hear. When my four-year-old was home sick, he asked if we could call and talk to the Center Director because he missed her. Many parents feel guilty about sending their kids to daycare during the workday, but when you know your child is loved and cared for so well, and engaged in so many exciting activities like music, cooking and science, the guilt fades away. There are so many things I love about our KinderCare Center. I love how my four-year-old comes home and tells me a shoebox is a rectangular prism but a piece of paper is only two-dimensional. I also love how his teacher and his friends' parents tell me my four-year- old is funny. He is funny and his classroom environment must really give him a chance to show his true personality. I love how Miss Becky emails me to tell me my two-year-old is doing fine after a slightly bumpy drop-off, or a food allergy, or a bump on the head, or anything.”
Elizabeth H. - KinderCare Parent
We didn’t start at KinderCare. It was our third day care and I do not like change. I fought against us changing day cares again but now I can't emphasize enough how happy we are. It took us a while to find our second day care (after a miserable1st daycare decision). We were at our second place for a few years, and we loved it. But as our kids got older, we moved, and the drive was feeling longer every day. We also realized that we needed more services than what were offered, including busing. We did our research. We visited more than a few places because we knew what we did not want. Every part of KinderCare seemed to meet what we wanted more than the other places. It is bright, the kids play outside often, and the curriculum is closely aligned with what we had researched would be best for creating independent thinkers. There are so many books and so many different stations. KinderCare also offers busing, they meet my work hours and they offer so many summer field trips. They have water play in the summer. They encourage family activities. We’ve now been at KinderCare for a few years for our two daughters. Our 2nd grader can’t wait for an in-service day at school because we only have her in daycare on those days during the school year. We let her pick some of her activities for the summer, and she chose to go to KinderCare two days a week above all of her other choices. Our kindergartner gets really angry with us if we pick her up too early in the day. They love the teachers and the activities, and we love that our babies are so happy.”
Sharon - KinderCare Parent
It’s been less than a month since my daughter moved from the two-year-old classroom into the Three's, and the changes we have seen are incredible. The teachers have potty-trained her so she has no more accidents during her time at the center. Her vocabulary has exploded and she’s forming much more complex sentences. She is singing songs she learned at school and making up ones of her own as well — with real words and narratives that make sense. Imaginative play used to consist of, “Hide—there’s a monster/dinosaur/dragon coming!” but now involves characters and actions and results and consequences. And of course, I can’t forget all she has learned in the Phonics and KinderMusic classes. She is now leading me in call-and-answer sessions based on the Pattern work she is doing in the extra Math Enrichment Program. KinderCare is more than a daycare. It is an all-around well-balanced system of education for parents who are interested in giving their kids a head start or encouraging the desire for learning already imbedded within them. You and your team of exceptional teachers, Ms. Becky, have allowed me to go back to work full-time, because I know there is someone watching my daughter who cares deeply about her education and well-being. I recommend KinderCare — and your center in particular — to every parent I come across. You have my grateful thanks!”
Mara - KinderCare Parent
I wanted to take a moment to tell you about what an amazing employee you have in the Assistant Director of your Ross Center! Rachael is not only wonderful with my daughter but she provides excellent customer service each and every time. There is not a time that I call or stop by the office that she is not smiling. Yes I can even hear her smile through the phone! My daughter is going to be moving to the Moon Township Center in September and I was very stressed about the move. Rachel has been so great! She has answered ALL my questions (trust me I ask a lot). Rachel is the reason we selected the center in the first place. When I came to look at the center, over a year ago, Tara the director at the time was out and Rachel sat and spoke with me in detail and made me feel so comfortable that I stopped looking right then! She is a true gem that KinderCare is lucky to employee. I must say I am in HR and wish I were lucky enough to have employees like her on my team.”
Melissa C. - KinderCare Parent
I just wanted to drop a line to you to let you know that your staff at the Pittsburgh (Cheryl Drive) Center is "Awesome". My daughter has been enrolled since 2006 and has returned for the Summer Program prior to going back to her school in August. I spoke to my Tara prior to enrolling her to be sure she can be in a room with her old friends and if she could not I was not going to enroll her due to the fact she has five close friends there and she would have a blast with them. Tara stated my request would not be an issue so my daughter got enrolled. She started on June 13th and when we got home she was very upset that none of her friends were in her class like I had promised her. The next morning I spoke to Mandy and even before we were out the door, she was with her friends. I understand this was probably due to the transition, but the promptness and accommodation was more than I can ask for. Also, my son just transitioned from the Infant room and is having a very difficult time with the transition due to separation issues. Your staff has been so accommodating to help him feel comfortable.. I am so grateful since my kids are my most prized possession. The specific teachers I would like thank are: Arlene (she is wonderful), Sarah, Mandy, Jen, & especially Robin. Robin has this calm, caring way about her and my son just takes to her. I know Becky is new, but since she has been there, she has been great to talk to, she listens to any needs we may have, and she genuinely cares. When I call to check on my son, she instantly knows how is day is going and I have an update prior to being transferred into his room. That shows me she cares about the kids needs and takes time to interact with her staff instead of being locked in an office all day and not caring. This makes me feel so comfortable since I have been through MANY directors and teachers since my kids have been there. The turnover is difficult on kids as well as parents. When new people watch your child, you always have a uneasy feeling in your gut until you get to know the person who is taking care of your kids. Lastly, I want to thank you for agreeing to take another 10% off of my daughters tuition, we are going through a difficult few months, but your generosity has helped, thank you.. I hope the teachers and the new director plan on staying for a while, they are a great asset to your team and organization and I feel comfortable with any of them taking care of my children.”
Tara 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.
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 North Hills 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 North Hills 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.