Meet The Team
Ms. STEFANIE, EDUCATION DIRECTOR and FOUNDER
Ms. Stefanie obtained her Master of Arts degree in Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education from New York University and has certifications in both of these educational fields. With over eleven years of experience working with children from ages one through five, she’s equipped to help young children thrive in their educational environment. She’s worked as a classroom teacher, an early childhood special needs consultant to schools and teachers, and a small group instructor for special needs children. In 2014, she decided to start Purple Crayon to serve the Bath Beach Brooklyn community. Her goal was to create a high quality preschool program that values play with a balance of structure. Besides her educational experience, she also has a Bachelor of Science degree from New York University School of Business and has worked as an accountant for more than seven years. Though she is still licensed as a Certified Public Accountant, she felt drawn toward the teaching field due to her enthusiasm for educating, her love for young children, and her desire to see students succeed in their futures. One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching young children is to be able to help children form an understanding of the world around them. As an educator, Ms. Stefanie strives to challenge her students while finding ways to channel their unique interests in order to instill in them a love of learning that will last for a lifetime.
MS. Agnes, operations assistant
Ms. Agnes has her Associates Degree in Computer Science and studied for her bachelor's degree with a major in Marketing. Her private sector experience includes a stint at Versace, the fashion company, as junior accountant. Ms. Agnes is a mother of three and it led her to adjust her course to focus on her children and faith. She became the treasurer of the Filipino Arts and Music Ensemble, a 501(c)3 organization that promotes culture through music and arts among children, and continues to do so to this day. She also was a Sunday school teacher teaching faith and morals to school age children and is currently one of the stewards of a church-based organization. She is dedicated, passionate and loves working with all children who she regards as gifts that give so much inspiration and messages of love and hope. In Ms. Agnes' free time, she enjoys spending it with her three grown-up children and loving husband to explore new places, museums, and nature trails together.
MS. CHRISTINA, TEACHER
Ms. Christina obtained her Master's and Bachelor of Science at New York Institute of Technology in Childhood Education with a concentration in English. She has her New York State Early Childhood Education and Childhood Education teaching certifications. She has over 13 years of experience working with children in different schools. She started in a position as a 1:1 aide and worked her way up to be the lead teacher of a preschool in Brooklyn. She has also substitute taught in many different public schools across Long Island in Grades K-12. Through her many different teaching experiences, she realized she loves working with the preschool age children. Preschool provides children with an opportunity to explore their environment, play and make friends with their peers and develop the ability to see what they enjoy most! She loves seeing how excited the children are to come to school and enjoys watching them grow!
Ms. FRANCHESCA, TEACHER
Ms. Franchesca has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. She is currently pursuing her Master's Degree in Early Childhood Education (Birth-2nd). She has over nine years of experience working with young children. Her educational career began with an assistant teaching position in Long Island City, which eventually led to a position as lead teacher at a reputable preschool in Astoria, NY. Her main experience in the educational field has involved working with children ages three to six years old who have developmental and/or special needs. As a dedicated educator, she is passionate about both seeing children learn and helping them to develop a thirst for learning. Her goal is to inspire each of her students to have a positive outlook on life and on their educational opportunities.
Ms. GINA, TEACHER
Ms. Gina has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business from The College of Mount Saint Vincent, and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree in Childhood Education. Ms. Gina has been working with young children for over 10 years in different educational settings. After graduating from college, Ms. Gina took on the role of Assistant Director at The Huntington Learning Center. She quickly moved up to the Director of Education, where she created, implemented, and monitored educational programs K-12. Ms. Gina also developed relationships with students, families, and teaching professionals from surrounding schools. During her time at Huntington Learning Center, Ms. Gina worked side by side with teachers and students which inspired her to pursue her teaching career. Ms. Gina loves working with young children and watching them grow and learn about the world around them. In her free time, she enjoys DIY projects, going to the beach, and spending time with family and friends.
Ms. JACLYN, TEACHER
Ms. Jaclyn graduated with her Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education and has her New York State Early Childhood and Student with Disabilities teaching certifications. Throughout her high school and college years she has been working with young children, which has inspired her to continue on with her Master’s in Early Childhood Education. Ms. Jaclyn has helped to run a camp for young girls and has been a teacher for parent-child classes at The Little Gym. She joined Purple Crayon in 2015 as an assistant teacher and has worked her way up to be the lead teacher teaching various age groups throughout the years. One of Ms. Jaclyn’s major goals is to be a positive role model in children’s lives.
MS. JAY, Assistant Teacher
Ms. Jay obtained her Bachelor of Psychology degree from CUNY- Brooklyn College. She has over 5 years of experience working with children in different capacities and ages. She started in a position as an assistant at a math and english learning center. Through her experiences, she realized teaching and being in the classroom is her goal and passion. Her goal is to teach and inspire young children to work pass their limits so that they can achieve their desired goals in life. Ms. Jay enjoys working with children and seeing them learn and grow.
MS. JANE, Assistant Teacher
Ms. Jane received a diploma in Early Childhood Education in China and a diploma in Music Education from Shaoguan University in Guangdong province. She also has obtained her Level 2 certificate in the Chinese Putonghua Proficiency Test. She has been in the United States for 13 years. She has 19 years of experience in early childhood education. Ms. Jane is an assistant teacher and also teaches Mandarin at Purple Crayon. She is a caring individual who loves to play and learn with the children she teaches. She hopes that with her help, the children will fall in love with Chinese, love to speak Chinese and make it their second language.
MS. JENNIFER, Assistant Teacher
Ms. Jennifer is pursuing her Bachelor degree in Early Childhood Education. She began her career in education as a teacher’s aide working with children with special needs as she embarked on a new educational journey in Early Childhood Education. She continued on to work in an Early childhood Education Center where she began teaching 2 year old learners. Ms. Jennifer enjoys working with all young learners and exploring the ways they process information and apply it to their lives. She has experience working with children ages 2 through 7, and has been in the field for 5 years. She wishes to continue to model compassion and self-confidence to any child she teaches and continues to do so.
MS. LYDIA, ASSISTANT TEACHER
Ms. Lydia is a nurturing and passionate, assistant teacher at Purple Crayon who enjoys creating with great, little minds. She has extensive experience working with children between the ages of 2 and 9 years of age for more than 5 years. She is a Brooklyn Native and studied Music and Studio Art at the College of Staten Island. She hopes to continue to teach young children how to tap into their creativity, uniqueness and self-confidence.
Ms. MICHELE, TEACHER
Ms. Michele graduated with her Bachelor of Arts from CUNY College of Staten Island in Early Childhood Education and has her New York State Early Childhood Teaching Certification. She started her career in a preschool classroom setting for over six years. During her experience in the classroom, she realized she wanted to learn more about special education and was accepted into a masters program for special education. While she pursued her studies in the masters program she worked as a special instructor to children with autism in a one-to-one setting. Through her many experiences, she discovered her passion was to be in the classroom setting where she can work with many children and collaborate with other teaching professionals. With this in mind, she found her way to join Purple Crayon in 2017. In Ms. Michele's free time she enjoys spending time with her twin girls and shopping new clothing trends.
MS. MICHELLE, Administrative associate
Ms. Michelle is a Bay Ridge, Brooklyn native who graduated from Fort Hamilton HS and went on to obtain an Associate Degree in Fashion Merchandising. She had spent over 25 years in the fashion retail industry, holding various positions in fashion photography, advertising and marketing. A few years into her career and after having three kids is when Ms. Michelle developed an interest to work with children in a school setting. She enjoyed volunteering for her kids’ school events and fundraisers. She also contributes her time, alongside her husband, to non-profit youth leagues in the Bay Ridge/Dyker Heights area. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, she lost her job at a company that she was with for 13 years, but it left her with an opportunity to choose a different path. Ms. Michelle was successful in making her career change in 2022 when she found her way to Purple Crayon, and it has been a fulfilling and rewarding experience. She loves to greet the children as they enter the classrooms in the morning and see them smile. Ms. Michelle is a proud mother of two adult children and one teenager. In her free time, she enjoys attending her daughter’s sports games, watching movies, tv shows & professional sports, knitting, gardening, bike riding, playing with dogs at the park and doing art projects with her youngest daughter.
MS. NOVEM, Assistant Teacher
Ms. Novem is an assistant teacher and Chinese teacher at Purple Crayon. She obtained her certificate of Pre-school Education in 2010 from Guandong Teachers College of Foreign Language and Arts. She began her teaching career in China and has 8 years of experience working with children. Her passion for teaching led her to continue her career as an early childhood professional when she arrived in New York. Her teaching journey in New York includes being an assistant teacher in various preschools and also being a lead teacher in Chinese immersion preschool programs. She joined Purple Crayon in 2018 to continue on with her journey. She enjoys reading, watching movies, and spending time with her family in her free time.
MS. YURIDIA, Teacher
Ms. Yuridia is currently finishing her Masters degree in Early Childhood Education at Brooklyn College. She discovered her passion for education in 2017, after working as an assistant teacher for a one-year-old classroom and working her way up to being a Lead Pre-k teacher. Ms. Yuri has experience working with preschoolers and up to first grade. She is patient and engages her little learners in practicing their skills through interactive lessons that promote growth and student confidence. When she is not in the classroom, she enjoys activities with her family like watching a good movie or finding new and exciting places to eat.
MS. ROBERTA, Assistant teacher
Ms. Roberta graduated from Fort Hamilton HS and is currently pursuing her Bachelor in Childhood Education at Brooklyn College, and will later pursue her Master’s Degree in Special Education. Ms. Roberta has over 4 years of experience working with young children, she has a passion for leading young children in the right direction and watching them grow. Her family came to the United States from Brazil and she grew up in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. She loves to read books, spend time with her dog Benji, and go on vacations anywhere there is sun, sand, and water.