Meet our Kindergarten Teachers
Mrs. Anne Nimey, Teacher
Mrs. Nimey has taught kindergarten at St. Agnes since 2007. 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 twenty-first 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. Kathleen Hofer, Teacher
Mrs. Kathleen Hofer began teaching at St. Agnes in 2014. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from George Mason University and a Certificate in Special Education from Marymount University. Kathleen has worked in diocesan schools for 9 years. She has served as a lead preschool teacher and instruction assistant as well as a 3rd grade teacher. Prior to her career in primary education, Kathleen worked at George Mason University as Assistant Director of the Alumni Association and the Assistant Director of the Annual Fund. Kathleen is also the mom of three St. Agnes graduates.
Mrs. Sophia Ciesinski, Assistant Teacher
Mrs. Sophia Ciesinski is starting her first year at St. Agnes. She graduated from St. Agnes in 2012. She earned her Bachelor in Nursing from Marquette University in 2020 and transitioned to early childhood education in 2021. She earned her AMI diploma from the Washington Montessori Institute in 2023. She married her husband in April of 2023. Outside of school Mrs Ciesinski enjoys baking and cooking. She is also an active volunteer for her Sorority. She is excited to be returning to St. Agnes!
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.
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:
Academic highlights include:
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.
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.
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.
Children learn about people, jobs, citizenship, holidays, maps and customs.
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.