Meet our Kindergarten Teachers

Mrs. Anne Nimey, Teacher

Mrs. Nimey has taught kindergarten at St. Agnes for eleven years. Before teaching at St. Agnes, she taught first and third grades for eleven years in private schools in Virginia and Louisiana. She earned a B.S. in pyschology and teaching certification from Tulane University. Anne received her Master’s as a Reading Specialist from George Mason University. In her free time, Anne enjoys reading mysteries and baking.

Mrs. Diane Engebritson, Assistant Teacher

Mrs. Engebritson is starting her eighteenth year at St. Agnes. She began as an assistant teacher in first grade. After two years, she moved to kindergarten. Before coming to St. Agnes, Mrs Engebritson taught at a local pre-school. She also worked in the Fairfax County Public Schools teaching children ages five through ten. Mrs. Engebritson studied Early Childhood Education at Virginia Commonwealth University. This past summer, she received certification in the IMSE Comprehensive Orion-Gillingham Training.  In her free time, Mrs Engebritson enjoys gardening, baking, and spending time with her family. She raised two St. Agnes graduates and her husband is a St. Agnes graduate.

Mrs. Colleen Vorbach, Teacher

Mrs. Vorbach is beginning her fifth year as a kindergarten teacher at St. Agnes, and eighth year as a Diocesan educator.  Her greatest joy in the classroom is sharing with young learners an enthusiasm for reading and expressing language through writing.  To that end, she has enjoyed working with her St. Agnes colleagues to implement
the Orton-Gillingham multisensory approach to language development.  Mrs. Vorbach holds a Bachelor of Science from Old Dominion University and teaching certification from the Virginia Catholic Education Association, Certificate of Catechesis and is enrolled in the Special Education Graduate Certificate program at
Marymount University. She and her husband have two children.

Mrs. Maria Khorsandi, Assistant Teacher

Mrs. Khorsandi joined the St. Agnes community as a parent in 1989.  She volunteered as a playground monitor, lunch assistant, and room parent.  She has been working as a Spanish teacher as well as an assistant teacher for Pre-k, 1st grade and currently Kindergarten for 23 years.  Prior to working at St. Agnes, Mrs. Khorsandi worked at the Car Store as a manager and bookkeeper.  She and her husband have 3 children who graduated from St. Agnes.  She enjoys teaching children at St. Agnes — St. Agnes has always been family to her.

 Kindergarten At A Glance

Children, age 5 by September 30, are eligible for full-day kindergarten, which provides a safe, nurturing learning environment and education of the whole child.  Faith formation is woven through the entire day to develop the children’s love of God.  Each child’s self-image is fostered so that each child can appreciate himself as a wonderful person created by God.
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Academically, the focus is on introducing skills needed for successful reading and writing, skills used to communicate, and math concepts that will lay the foundation for future learning.

The Responsive Classroom approach is used to encourage children to make choices, act responsibly, and work cooperatively.  Kindergarten children grow in learning, so they can work independently, follow directions and increase their attention span.  class size is limited to 25 students per class.

The kindergarten curriculum is designed to prepare the student for first grade. The program is developmental, dealing with all areas of growth:

  • spiritual
  • social
  • emotional
  • language
  • physical.

Academic highlights include:

Religion

Kindergarten students begin to understand and appreciate God’s goodness in creating them and the world. Students learn about God through Bible stories and projects.

 

Language Arts

Children receive varied experiences in reading and writing, auditory and visual perception, and language development.  With these skills, children gain the foundation for all future learning.  St. Agnes utilizes the multi-sensory program, Orton-Gillingham, to teach reading.

 

Math

Students use a “hands on” approach of guided and free exploration of materials along with questioning and independent experiences.  Topics covered include shapes, counting, patterns, addition, subtraction, graphing, measurement, and money.

 

Social Studies

Children learn about people, jobs, citizenship, holidays, maps and customs.

 

Science

The Science program follows a discovery and problem-solving approach.  Using all five senses, children learn about living and non-living matter, weight, space, weather and seasons.  Fun units, such as insects and dinosaurs, will be included, depending on the interest of the students.

 

St. Agnes kindergarten teachers meet with the rising kindergartners in the spring to administer the Brigance kindergarten readiness assessment, while the parents meet with the Principal or Vice-Principal.