Welcome to Pre-K

Our preschool is a part of the St. John Neumann community.  It is rooted in the strong foundations of our Catholic faith and promotes the spiritual, academic, physical, and emotional well-being of each child. Our dedicated preschool teacher and their assistant provide students with the integral fundamentals needed to succeed.

The vision of St. John Neumann Preschool is the care and guidance of children to learn to the best of their ability.  Our preschool children are given opportunities to engage in hands-on activities to prepare them the best we can for Kindergarten.

Meet Mrs. Doktycz

I was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago.  Singing has always been a part of my life.  I remember well singing with my dad and two older sisters the Sound of Music at family parties.  In high school, I was in choir and swing choir. I received my undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois Champaign/Urbana in Child Development.  I also sang for the university chorus.  I received my master’s degree in Instructional Leadership from University of Illinois at Chicago.  My teaching career started with grades four, five and six.  After moving to Knoxville I taught fourth and fifth grades at Sacred Heart, but my heart has always been in early childhood.

I have three children who all attended St. John Neumann and Knoxville Catholic High School. I am a founding member at All Saints Church and created the Children’s Choir which I directed for 16 years.  I also ran the music for VBS and sacraments of Reconciliation and First Communion for many years.  I am a member of the choir and a cantor for Masses.

Before going back to work full time, I substitute taught at St. John Neumann for ten years.  My husband, Mitch, has been the Cross Country coach for the past ten years.  The opening in the Pre-k program was a dream that I never thought would come true.  This is the beginning of my seventh year in Pre-K.  This is where I belong.  I get to teach young children and, of course, sing with them every day!

Meet Mrs. Stapleton

Born and raised here, I am proud to be a Knoxville Native! I’ve lived in Knoxville my entire life, with the exception of college at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, TN.

I grew up attending St. John Neumann Catholic Church and was married there to my husband Pat who I met at ETSU. I graduated from nursing school in Knoxville from Fort Sanders School of Nursing (now Lincoln Memorial University).

I am a registered nurse and worked in family practice and allergy & asthma until my son, Michael, now a junior at Knoxville Catholic High, was born. When my daughter Audrey, (an 8th grader here at SJNCS) started kindergarten in 2011, I started working at SJNCS part-time as the school nurse. A few years later when the preschool opened, I started working as a teaching assistant full-time. I still enjoy helping in the clinic as needed though! I spend most of my free-time taking care of my family and our two dogs Shamrock and Clover.

In addition to spending time with family and friends, I enjoy cooking and baking, decorating, and reading. I feel extremely blessed to work at SJNCS and to be a part of the school community as a staff member and as a parent!

Now that my children are a little older, I enjoy working with the preschool children. We have fun and stay busy, and everyday is an adventure! I especially love that each day as part of my job, I have the opportunity to pray, worship, and live my Catholic Faith in all that we do!

What We're Learning This Year

This class is designed to be a full-time, 5 days per week, Kindergarten preparatory program. Days are not repeated. If your student is enrolled in our 4 year-old class on a part-time basis, they will participate in the activities of that day.

In Pre-K, your child will participate in daily activities geared towards fostering independence, enhancing academic development, and promoting relationships and community.

We use the Splash into Pre-K curriculum from Frog Street Press which provides an extensive integration of theme, disciplines, and domains. Each week is filled with exciting themes such as families, communities, things that move, our Earth, bugs, choices, and many, many more. This is a cross curricular program with literature, math, science, social studies and social development.

Our reading program, Happily Ever After breaks down and explains the earliest reading skills and aligns with our elementary curriculum for a smooth transition into Kindergarten. It is literature based and focuses on letters, colors, shapes and vocabulary to prepare them for the K-2 Superkids series.

Religion is taught from God Made the World by Loyola Press. We have religion daily and incorporate learning prayers and songs about God during this class. There is a weekly Religion activity that we do on Wednesday afternoons. Each year, we prepare our students to attend Mass on Mondays and Thursdays starting in October.

Center time is provided as time allows. Centers are based on our theme or skills we are currently working on. We usually have play dough and encourage them to make it theme based (i.e. we are learning about homes this week and we may ask them to try and make a home with play dough). We may have a center that is letter practice with dry erase boards or magnet letters, a game that is run by a teacher, and several others (puzzles, pattern blocks, color sorting, peg boards, etc.) This is a popular time of the week. It is like a free play with some structure. They can move around but are not required to (especially if they trying to complete a puzzle or activity).

Singing and dancing time occurs daily after nap. We learn songs that go with their themes and review others they have learned, and once everyone is fully awake we get up and move our bodies. Kids yoga is something fun we try and do during this time, as well.

Friday Folders come home each Friday. please check and clean out your child’s Friday Folder each week.

Lunch 10:50-11:20 

Mon: PE 9:35-9:55 (gym) 

Tue:Span 9:35-9:55 (classroom) 

Wed:Lib 9:35-9:50 (library) 

Thur: PE 9:35-9:55 (gym) 

Fri:Art 9:35-10:05 (classroom)