who we are
Laurel Play Gardens is an initiative of Teknol Inc. formed by a group of Edupreneurs seeking visible change in educational space in Silicon Valley, and elsewhere. The team is comprised of some exceptional people from varied disciplines who have taken the road less traveled. With an aspiration of national footprints, Teknol is on the threshold of making a bigger impact on many more lives.
- To promote free play which is child-led
- To protect children’s innate connection to their environment, the natural world
- To allow children to interact with their ever-changing environment
- To enable children to take healthy and manageable risks
- To allow children to experience complete freedom of movement
- To allow opportunity for children to follow their own initiative
- To engage with other children in an unstructured, unhurried space
- To have a multi-sensory engagement with the world
- To give the time and space to awaken their own natural sense of wonder
- To forge friendships and feel part of a community which supports their important job of parenting
- To give the opportunity to closely observe their child’s development
- To aid children with group social skills through gentle guidance in manners, courtesy and developing friendships
- To model peace, inclusion, tolerance of differences, respect and patience with one another
- To encourage children's sense of order, independence and concentration
- To develop pre-reading language skills and pre-writing fine motor skills
- To introduce early math concepts through counting games, demonstration and use of manipulatives
- To encourage discovery and interest in the wonderful world around us with materials and sensory activities to spark the child’s innate curiosity
- To guide children in having fun and experimenting with art, music, dance and their own physical abilities
- To introduce children to our world through cultural experiences with people, foods, plants, animals, countries and geography
- To share joys and concerns of each child’s development with parents and guardians
Thirty years ago, led “back to school” by her three-year old daughter, Amy, Kristina began working with young children at the National Child Research Center in Washington, DC. Since that time, the education of young children has become her calling.
Kristina has broad educational experience encompassing play-based as well as Montessori programs. She formerly was Administrator and Kindergarten teacher at Willow Vale Christian School and Children’s Center (Pre-K-8 and Independent Studies) in Willow Glen, California.
Kristina holds a BA in English Literature from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. In 2000, at Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, California she completed a 28-hour program in Montessori Early Childhood Education. As part of the Masters of Montessori Education program at Notre Dame, she conducted research in Japan on the country’s preschool programs.
Near Laurel Play Gardens Preschool, in the Rose Garden neighborhood of San Jose, Kristina now lives with her husband, Bill, their son, Arnold, and his two-year old daughter, Natalynn. This fall Natalynn will lead Kristina “back to school” as Kristina “follows the child” and returns to school as the Director of Laurel Play Gardens. Bill and Kristina are grandparents of eleven and parents of six adult children.
Faye has been guiding and enjoying children for 25 years as an Early Childhood Teacher. She comes by this naturally having grown up with 10 brothers and sisters on a large North Dakota farm. She learned her kind and gentle ways from her parents who shared their love of the prairie, animals and stars with their children. While raising her own family, Faye worked in early childhood centers and schools from Stanford to Seattle. Her joy for life and the world is contagious and an inspiration to her young charges. You will find Faye happily leading an expedition into the mud in search of worms or sitting quietly watching the butterflies dance around the garden.
We are grateful to have Faye with us at Laurel Play Gardens.