Joni BucknerToddler's Class
Ms. Buckner received her Bachelor of Arts in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.
What drew you to teaching? "Cherished memories of helping my mother with our Church nursery is what drew me to teaching. I love watching the children play, explore, learn, and achieve. Being a witness to their blossoming personalities and growing independence is truly heartwarming."
Favorite Snack: "Cookies with milk"
Hidden Talent: "Champion Jenga Player"
Emmy Bullard4's Class Teacher
Ms. Bullard received her Bachelors of Arts in Elementary Education at UNC-Chapel Hill and her Masters of Education at East Carolina University.
What drew you to teaching? "I did a lot of babysitting as a teenager and always loved being with children. Working at the Girls Club in the summer confirmed that I would enjoy teaching."
Favorite Snack: "Goldfish"
Hidden Talent: "Sewing"
Stephanie BurneyToddlers & 2's Class Teacher
Ms. Burney received her Bachelors of Arts in Education from St. Lawrence University. She minored in French Literature and Developmental Psychology.
What drew you to teaching? "It's the only job where you get paid to play. And because children sparkle."
Favorite Snack: "Oreo Cookies"
Hidden Talent: "I can do the splits."
Joyce Cason3's Class Teacher
Ms. Cason has her Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education.
What drew you to teaching? "It started early when my own two boys were young and in preschool here at SJDS. Once the oldest entered kindergarten, I knew that I wanted to teach kids. I started substituting at SJDS and at a Charter School. When a kindergarten class started at SJDS in 2007, I was offered a job in that class. I've been with SJDS ever since. I enjoy helping children learn, and understand. I hope to inspire them."
Favorite Snack: "Fruit"
Hidden Talent: "I can sew."
Mitzi Daughtry4's Class Teacher
Ms. Daughtry has her Bachelors of Arts in Early Childhood Education, Pre-K through 5th Grade.
What drew you to teaching? "I had two things. I have a few family members who were teachers and wonderful role models to me. The second reason is when I was in 4th grade I struggled in math. My teacher helped me so much. I have never forgotten her and what she did for me. from then on, I wanted to be a teacher and help children the way she helped me.
Favorite Snack: "Trail Mix"
Hidden Talent: "Running"
Courtney Easley2's Class Teacher
Ms. Easley received her Bachelors of Arts from College of Charleston and her Teaching Certificate from Meredith College and UNCW.
What drew you to teaching? "My love of children! It's so rewarding to see how much each child learns and grows in such a short amount of time that you spend with them in the classroom."
Favorite Snack: "Pretzel Chips"
Hidden Talent: "Painting"
Jordan HooperToddler's Class
Ms. Hooper received her degree in Communications and Non-Profit Studies at NC State University and her Masters in Elementary Education from UNC Charlotte.
What drew you to teaching? "My love of children led me to teaching. I taught first grade before I had my two boys. The balance of stay at home momming and teaching the toddlers two days a week is perfect!"
Favorite Snacks: "Gum, Skittles, Snickers."
Hidden Talent: "Decluttering and Organizing"
J.K. Thomas2's Class Teacher
Ms. Thomas attended North Carolina State University.
What drew you to teaching? "I love watching children have fun while learning how to play interactively. I believe that preschool is such an important first step of their journey in education! I enjoy the creative aspects of teaching that help children learn and develop crucial life skills. For me, there is no greater reward than seeing a child accomplish a task, knowing that I played a small role in guiding them towards reaching that goal!"
Favorite Snacks: "Gummy Bears, Pretzels, Diet Coke"
Hidden Talent: "Hmm... this talent is so well-hidden that I don't even know where to find it!"
Patti Whitley2's Class Teacher
Ms. Whitley received her degree from UNC-Chapel Hill.
What drew you to teaching? "Originally, I had planned to obtain a "Masters in the Art of Teaching" once my children were middle school age but the love of preschoolers from my subbing days convinced me to become a preschool teacher. At the earliest age, children are so eager to learn and I love that enthusiasm along with the extra special hugs and thumb kisses."
Favorite Stack: "Popcorn"
Hidden Talent: "Checkers Champion! (among family and friends)"
Shannon Leas3's Class Teacher
Mrs. Leas attended Appalachian State University and studied Culinary Arts at Ashville.
What drew you to teaching? I am able to create, play, laugh, smile, sing silly songs, jump, and make fun crafts everyday with precious little children. Teaching is a work of the heart!
Favorite Snack: Crackers and Cheese
Hidden Talent: I can Skurf
Sue Williams3's Class Teacher
What drew you to teaching?
When my two children were at SJDS, I was invited to come teach. That experience sparked my love and passion for teaching. After many years of teaching in public school, I have returned to my roots.
My favorite snack: popcorn
Hidden talent: Making fun happen with my grandchildren!
Shannon Lockamy3's Class Teacher
Ms. Lockamy received her Associates and Bachelors Degrees from Peace College.
What drew you to teaching?
"I had an early start in teaching by teaching dance at 16. I have always been drawn to teaching the children. I worked in Wake County Public Schools before moving to the Wilmington, NC area. I enjoy watching the children grow throughout the years.
Favorite Snack: Fruit (except strawberries)
Hidden Talent: "I play the bagpipes and I clog dance."