Owner & Executive Director / Kindergarten Teacher
Joan Winslow is the Owner and Director of The Learning Company and Academy, and teaches the Kindergarten class.
Joan is a native Californian and graduated from San Jose State University with Distinction and Honors, receiving the Outstanding Teacher Award. She majored in Sociology, minored in Music and English, and holds her Standard Teaching Credential and Certificate of Merit from the Spanish Teachers Association.
Joan founded the school in 1980 and has owned five schools including one whose grades included preschool through 8th grade. She enjoys creating and presenting musical play with the children six times a year and plays the piano teaching the children to sing and dance twice a day.
In her spare time, Joan enjoys gardening and playing classical music on her piano. She also enjoys having fun with her two grandchildren and traveling to Mexico with her husband, John, who teaches math and helps with the reading program at the school.
Joan's main goal is to help her young students love to learn and to be creative. She is pleased to hear that most of her kindergarteners go on to first grade reading and doing math on a second or third grade level.
Preschool Teacher - 4 year olds
Miss Lilian is the teacher of the four year olds and young fives. She has been working with children for over twenty years, seventeen of which were at The Learning Company and Academy.
Miss Lilian studied in Amman - Jordan in the Middle East, completing her degree in Executive Office Administration and Language (Arabic, French, English) and is currently studying Greek. She moved to the United States in 1991.
Her passion and dream is working with young children, so she returned to school to study Child Development and completed all the classes offered which entitled her to become an Assistant Director.
Miss Lilian is married and has three children who keep her busy. She likes reading, attending workshops for early childhood educators, walking, swimming, and hiking.
Preschool Teacher - 3 year olds
Miss Yolanda has been teaching for eleven years, eight of which have been at The Learning Company and Academy. She speaks Spanish and English. She is married and has one daughter. Her family enjoys spending time together reading, exercising, and gardening.
As a teacher, Miss Yolanda tries to create an environment that enhances each child's imagination, self-direction, and motivation. Her goal is to help them grow to their fullest capacity; physically, socially, and academically. Miss Yolanda feels that the best thing about teaching is that there is always more to learn everyday.
Afternoon Kindergarten & Preschool Teacher
Miss Victoria says The Learning Company and Academy has been a joyful teaching experience for her, lasting more than twenty years. She currently teaches the afternoon kindergarten and preschool program. She is a graduate of San Jose State University, having received her Masters Degree in Family Relations and Child Development with a minor in Sociology.
Miss Victoria worked for The Learning Company and Academy for six years as a preschool teacher and Assistant Director and then became head teacher for the school while teaching Kindergarten. Her classes, knicknamed "The Kinderfroggins," have a brick step #408 in Oak Meadow Park. Many of her students are now parents of children who are currently attending this campus.
Miss Victoria is dedicated to her family, enjoying attending soccer games, plays, and all of their other pursuits. She also enjoys ballroom dancing, art, and science.
Debbie Ambelang has been the Gymsters teacher at The Learning Company and Academy for numerous years. Debbie was born and raised in San Jose and acquired her degree in Physical Education from San Jose State University.
Debbie enjoys hiking, tennis, bocce ball, and traveling. She recently had the experience of a lifetime hiking to the base of the Matterhorn in Switzerland. She says she feels very fortunate to be able to work with children teaching them about their bodies and assisting them to improve their motor skills.