main

Meet Our Staff

After 30 years, Moonstone’s dedicated staff prides itself on providing a safe, loving and inspiring learning environment. Our qualified staff ranges from certified early childhood teachers to storytellers, artists, dancers, musicians, and language specialists. Maintaining such a diverse staff enables us to have a foundation for exploration and creative growth. All staff has a State Criminal clearance, Child Abuse clearance, and an FBI check. Moonstone trains all staff annually with a minimum of six hours of continued career training, CPR & First Aid training, and Fire Safety training.

The entire staff at Moonstone Preschool has been hand selected for their love of children, learning, and creativity. Every teacher has something unique to offer our students through their varied educational backgrounds….

We lead by example and love what we do!!

Sandy Robin - Founder

Sandy is one of the founders of Moonstone Inc., which has been around since 1983. Sandy has a Master's in Education Leadership from The Bank Street College of Education and an undergraduate degree from Antioch University in Early Childhood and Elementary Education. She also has a certificate from The Penn Academy of Fine Arts, where she studied sculpture and drawing for four years. Outside of Moonstone, she regularly practices and teaches Ashtanga and Bikram yoga. Sandy has two sons named Christopher and Ben, who both attended Moonstone in its early stages.

Julia Weekes- Director

Julia is an educator and artist specializing in experiential education and cooperative learning for youth, teens, and adults. She is a Philadelphia-area native and resides in Mt. Airy with her husband Iggy and her two boys Judah and Isaiah. Julia received her BFA from Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts and an MAT (Masters of Art in Teaching) from University of the Arts. She has been teaching art, horticulture, and science for over twenty-five years with a focus on community-based programming for underserved populations. Julia has over a decade of experience in grant writing, fundraising and community outreach. She has also taught preschool and still teaches at her synagogue. In her spare time, Julia continues to make art, play the ukulele and sing, cook, and garden.

Shannon Roscoe- Assistant Director Shannon has worked at Moonstone since June 2004. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in the spring of 2003 with a BA in Film Studies and a minor in Spanish. She has been around children for a long time, being the oldest of four girls. Before moving back to Philadelphia in 2004, Shannon worked as a teacher at the Children’s Center of Pittsburgh.  In June 2006, Shannon graduated from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition in New York City as a Certified Holistic Health Counselor, and is now a member of the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. Currently she is pursuing additional training in Education at The Community College of Philadelphia.

Michelle Mullally - Assistant Director

Michelle has worked at Moonstone since January 2006. She has a BFA in Furniture Design from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She exhibited work at The International Contemporary Furniture Fair in New York City in 2001. Upon moving to Philadelphia, she worked for Urban Outfitters Inc. as a department manager. Looking for a change of career and wanting to work with children in an artistic environment, she came to Moonstone.  Michelle is currently working towards her Masters Degree in Education from Drexel University.

Mishaun Johnson - Administrative Manager

Mishaun, who is originally from Texas, has been a part of the Moonstone Family since 2001. She started out as a parent and then began working at Moonstone in January 2004, as the assistant administrator. She has three children, two of whom are Moonstone alumni. Before working at Moonstone, Mishaun worked at the Warner Brothers Studio Store for 5 years, as an Assistant Manager, and at Maxercise for 2 years, as an Office Manager. She also proudly served in the US Air Force before moving to Philadelphia in 1994.

Stephanie Ricci - Administrative Assistant

Stephanie, a Philadelphia native, attended the University of the Arts for Photography. She has shown her photography and multimedia work at many galleries in the Philadelphia area. Stephanie has been working with children in artistic settings since the young age of 15 and is very excited to be a part of the Moonstone family. When she's not at Moonstone, she's doing freelance photography work and playing hockey.

Tod Yoder – Lead Teacher / Half Moon teacher

Tod has been with Moonstone since 1998. His compassionate nature has been brought to life within Moonstone's nurturing environment. Tod's extensive experience with children draws from being part of a large family. He is a freelance artist, having studied commercial art and communication in his home state of Indiana. He traveled the world, working as a flight attendant for ten years, before joining the preschool. Tod has an appreciation for cultural diversity and individualism, which inspires his teaching style. Tod practices yoga, reiki, and meditation, which gives him a grounded center and encourages others to cultivate self-awareness.

Christi Hensler - Lead Teacher / New Moon teacher

Christi Riley Hensler started working at Moonstone in November 2003. Since then, she has had four children of her own. Christi has been a member of Girls Scouts since 1985 and a leader since 1997.  Within that time, she has received the Gold Award, which is the highest award in the organization. Christi is also a member of the Ancient Ladies of Hibernia (#87). Christi came to Moonstone because she loves working with children and she looks forward to being here for a long time.

Johnny Buckley - Lead Teacher /  Blue Moon Teacher

"Engaging children in play is oddly similar to a rehearsal process.  Both are preparatory by craft, lively, and loaded with infinite possibilities for discovery."  Johnny joined Moonstone Preschool in 2005 and quickly developed a relationship working with the youngest group, the new moons.  Happily able to apply his theater training to education (BA in Theater from Temple University, 2001), Johnny has imparted a multifaceted curriculum using storytelling, puppetry, literature, first friday art showings, and visual art-oddities to educate and inspire.  He communicates the school's ideas and curriculum themes by writing the weekly newsletter.  In his spare time, Johnny tinkers with  wooden toys and collects odd treasures.

Alyssa San Valentin - Lead Teacher / New Moon Teacher

Alyssa earned her Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts from Rowan University, which she thought she would use to take over the world. Instead she found it was more useful for teaching messy art to kids. Alyssa volunteered as a workshop leader teaching young girls how to screen print t-shirts at the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls in Brooklyn, NY. These days she still screen prints, makes books, plays guitar in a two piece band, and enjoys teaching kids of any age and gender.

Gina Polite – Lead Teacher / Music Teacher

Gina Polite grew up in New Jersey and graduated from the University Of The Arts in 2007. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance, specializing in Opera and Jazz. She then worked professionally as both a jazz and classical singer in various venues in and around Philadelphia, and then started teaching music at Moonstone in the fall of 2008. Throughout college and her professional career, Gina has performed with Peter Nero and the Philly Pops, members of Philadelphia Opera Company, and The Philadelphia Singers.  She was also a featured performer in the Barrymore Awards and two Summer Solstice events hosted by the Kimmel Center. When Gina is not teaching, she likes to write children’s songs and spend time with friends and family.

Kate Leibrand- Art Specialist

Kate was born and raised in South Jersey before she attended Elizabethtown College in Lancaster County, PA.  She graduated in 2011 with a Bachelors in Fine Arts, as well as her Pennsylvania Teaching Certificate for Art K-12.  After deciding to go back to school for her graduate degree, Kate found herself in a preschool job and fell in love with the energy, creativity, and humor at this age.  She graduated August 2014 from Moore College of Art & Design with a Master's of Fine Art in Studio Art.  Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally.  Kate enjoys everything from painting, to crocheting and cooking.

Samantha McConnell -  Library Specialist

Samantha grew up in New Jersey and has always had a passion for the arts.  She earned her Bachelor's Degree of Fine Arts and Art Education from Moore College of ARt & Design in 2004.  She continued her quest of knowledge and all things art at the University of the Arts, where she earned her Master's Degree in Art Education in 2010.  Samantha has had her art shown at the Kimmel Center, the Lincoln Financial Field, and Fleisher Art Memorial.  Samantha has years of experience teaching children throughout the Philadelphia area and is is excited to be a part of Moonstone.

Terrence McGinn- Full Moon Teacher

Terrence has dedicated his life to education in the arts. He brings more than 20 years of piano, visual arts, and culinary talent to Moonstone.  Prior to joining the preschool, Terrence was a chef with years of industry experience. He has also worked with various children’s programs through the Philadelphia Department of Recreation and Summer Art Camp.  He looks forward to teaching and growing with your children.

Irene Repik – Half Moon Teacher

Irene is a native of Kiev, Ukraine. While in Kiev, Irene studied music (vocal, conducting and musical education) at a musical conservatory. After completing her studies, Irene taught music to children ranging from preschool to high school age. She also spent time performing at a musical theater, where she won several opera competitions. Twenty years ago, Irene and her family moved to Philadelphia. After settling in, her family owned and operated a traditional eastern European bakery and cafe. After the cafe closed, Irene began to nanny full time. She has been a nanny for the past seven years, which ultimately led her to Moonstone. Here at Moonstone, Irene works with the Blue Moons, and often times has featured solos in music class

Alexis Macrina - New Moon Teacher

Alexis grew up in the Philadelphia area and has been working with children of all ages for over 10 years.  She returns to Moonstone after a 4 year leave  teaching fitness and nutrition programming to at-risk youth in Columbus, OH.  Alexis competes in bodybuilding, as well as continuing her hobby of goldsmithing.  She is excited to share her passion and interests with the Moonstone kids.

Jessica Johnson- Full Moon Teacher

Jessica was born in Bitburg, Germany to her parents who were both active duty members of the United States Air Force at the time. She came to Philadelphia at 3 months old after her parents finished serving and has lived here ever since. She graduated high-school from the Girard Academic Music Program and attended The Art Institute of Philadelphia for Culinary Arts. She was previously a manager for Starbucks Corporation in the Center City District for 3 and a half years. She has two younger siblings who are Moonstone Alumni. She has been part of the Moonstone family for 10+ years, babysitting for her first family at the age of 13. Then continuing to babysit for numerous other Moonstone families and staff for the last 10 years and still to this day. She has been a part-time nanny on and off for various families over the past 3 years. She is the oldest daughter of Moonstone Administrator, Mishaun Johnson.

Alycia Kohler- Language Specialist

Alycia grew up in the Philadelphia area and graduated from Rowan University in 2003. She began her teaching career in Patagonia, Chile, helping children learn English. After living in California and Kentucky, she came back to Philadelphia. Since 2010, Alycia has taught ESL, Reading, and Citizenship, worked as a nanny, and developed and facilitated programs for the Free Library. She used to ride her bicycle past Moonstone and wonder what was going on inside; now she is excited to be the new Language Specialist. Along with teaching children, riding her bike, and traveling, Alycia loves to read, bake pies, and sew.

Chris Panico- Music Specialist

Chris grew up in southern New Jersey and started playing piano at a very young age. He moved to Philadelphia in 2009 to study Composition at the University of the Arts and has stayed in the city since. After graduating from college Chris worked as a private music instructor independently and through several schools in the area, working with children of all ages. When he isn’t at Moonstone or in lessons Chris likes to read, write music, and walk his very small dog, Bombur.
Rebecca Twumasi Boateng- Hygiene Specialist
Rebecca currently lives in Philadelphia, but is originally from Ghana in West Africa. She is a high school graduate from Pentecost Secondary School in Kumasi, Ghana and use to work at Glory Daycare in Sunyani, Ghana as a childcare aide.  After moving to Philadelphia, she worked as a babysitter.  Rebecca has a teenage daughter named Dorcas Boateng.
Meghan McEnerney- Blue Moon Teacher

Born and raised in central NJ where from an early age Meghan knew she wanted to work with children.  She received her BFA from Rutgers in Camden taking classes in art education. Her experience comes from working at several other learning centers in Philadelphia before finding her way to Moonstone, where she fell instantly in love with the facilities, curriculum, staff and children. In her spare time she does sculpture, loves gardening, and is a passionate consignment shopper.


Employment Opportunities

Open Position(s):

If you are interested in applying to Moonstone for future teaching opportunities, including substitute opportunities, please email your resume with our Preliminary Questionaire to julia@moonstonepreschool.org.

Moonstone Inc. has been and remains committed to the principles of nondiscrimination and equal employment opportunity and seeks students, staff, teachers, and volunteers from diverse backgrounds.  Consistent with this commitment, Moonstone Inc. does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, handicap or marital status or any other legally protected class in the administration of any Moonstone program or activity or any related employment practice.

Happenings

Save the Date...

  • May 20th- Spring Cleaning Day
  • May 29th- Closed for Memorial Day

United Way #48916



Tour



Logo

Age
18 months to 5 years old

Hours
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Address
750 South 11th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Phone
tel: 215.574.9157
fax: 215.940.2841

Phone
learn@moonstonepreschool.org

facebook
Find us on Facebook!


to a good cause

-
© Moonstone Preschool 2010