Keri Knudson, Center Director
Meet Keri Knudson, Our Center Director
At KinderCare Since: 2001
Education: Bachelor of Arts
Favorite Children's Book: Where the Wild Things Are
Meet Keri Knudson! She is the Center Director at Wheaton KinderCare in Illinois. Keri attended Northern Illinois University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She has been with KinderCare since 2001, and before that was a school-aged teacher and trainer. "The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." -Dr. Seuss. Outside of work, Keri enjoys working out at the gym and any time spent with her family, whether it's taking their dog to the park or binge-watching Netflix at home.
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.
Wheaton 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.
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.
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 can't say enough wonderful things about Ms. Lisa's phonics program. All three of my children went through the phonics program, and all three knew how to read before starting kindergarten. The best part is they don't see it as work or learning. They think it is fun. They love doing phonics. My son doesn't like reading and wouldn't go anywhere near letters or words with me, but he happily did phonics with Ms. Lisa and he now reads several levels higher than his current grade. My daughters think writing is a fun activity. It was such a relief knowing as they entered kindergarten they were confident in reading.”
Karen K - KinderCare Parent
Many thanks to each of you!
You take wonderful care of our most precious gifts. We appreciate beyond words the love and support you give our girls. We hope this year is filled with joy and peace for you and your families. Thank you for all that you do.”
The Conley Family - KinderCare Parent
KinderCare in Wheaton has done amazing things for my granddaughter's progress in life. We work together as a team for her development and to strengthen acquired skills. We also work to improve skills not mastered. I enjoy all the staff at the center and couldn't complain about one of them. It's so refreshing to know my granddaughter can't wait to get to school. Thanks to all the staff!”
The Garofalo Family - KinderCare Parent
Wheaton KinderCare is so wonderful! We love the teachers and all the knowledge that goes into educating our kids. We wouldn't consider any other facility.”
Andrea Belanger - KinderCare Parent
Aaron, currently in second grade, participated in the phonics program while he was enrolled at the KinderCare in Wheaton. The phonics program helped him develop his love for writing and reading that has carried into his education today. In his recent teacher conference, his teacher commented on his writing skills, along with his handwriting. In second grade, he is testing at or above his grade level in all areas of literacy. Aaron's handwriting has continuously been an area that has stood out due to the work that he has put into learning and writing his letters in phonics. The phonics program was Aaron's foundation for his love of writing.
Sarah is currently in the phonics program. Since starting the program in July, Sarah has shown tremendous progress in recognizing and writing her letters. Prior to the program, she had low letter recognition. Four months into the program, she is writing full sentences. Phonics has become a highlight of her day and she loves to review the letters she learns when she comes home.”
Patty H. - 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 Wheaton 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 Wheaton 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.