EAST PRESCHOOL TEAM
DISCOVERING DINOS (Twos / Threes)
DANIELLE GAWLIK - LEAD TEACHER
Hello, my name is Danielle Gawlik. I graduated with my bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Eastern Illinois University. During my time at Eastern, I had the opportunity to have two practicum courses, one in third grade and the other in fifth grade. I also student taught in first grade at Troy Shorewood Elementary School in Shorewood, IL. In 2018, I started teaching at my first daycare. I have worked with the twos and pre-k (4-5 years old) age groups. Teaching these age groups has been so rewarding. My goal is to ensure that all the students in my care feel safe and welcome.
This profession means everything to me. From when I was a little girl, I always knew I wanted to become a teacher. As I got older, I saw my siblings struggle with school and it was through helping my younger sister that I really knew I wanted to be an educator. Shaping young minds is something I plan on doing for the rest of my life.
I grew up in Joliet, IL my entire life and just recently moved to Chicago in December of 2020. I have one brother and two sisters. I also have four nephews who each keep me busy in their own way. Just recently I became a mom to a beautiful baby girl in July of this year. In my free time I love spending time with family and going on walks. I also love watching football (GO BEARS!) and other sports such as track and cheerleading. I ran track for five years and was a cheerleader for sixteen years.
JACQUELINE SANCHEZ - ASSISTANT TEACHER
I am currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree. I enjoy working with children because they love to learn new material. I like being able to help them develop new skills, and create friendships with classmates that will prepare them for the future. I love teaching because I enjoy working with children because they love to learn new material. I love being able to help them develop new skills, and create friendships with classmates that will prepare them for the future. My favorite area of play for children is dramatic play because it gives them the ability to use their extraordinary imagination. Also, they get to interact with one another, and play different roles.
ZEALOUS ZEBRAS (Preschool/PreK)
AUTUMN NORMAN - LEAD TEACHER
Hi, I am the PreK / Kindergarten teacher! I graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a B.A in Psychology, and that experience gave me a deeper understanding of how young children develop, think, and process through their experiences. That led me to obtain a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from National Louis University. As one of the founding teachers at Little Inspirations, I have always enjoyed watching children develop an understanding of their world through interacting with it on a daily basis. I have never thought of the classroom as just being indoors, so I am very excited about watching children interact with their world through fun community outings, field trips, and outdoor adventures. In my spare time, I enjoy sketching, coloring, and watching TV, particularly Netflix.
CARMEN MEZA - ASSISTANT TEACHER
Hi! My name is Carmen Meza, or Ms. Carmen if you please. I’m one of the Assistant/Substitute Teachers at Little Inspirations. I go from classroom to classroom to assist the Lead and Assistant teachers in anything they may need, so you may see me in different classrooms every other day. I have 2 years experience working in a childcare setting, but 5+ years in babysitting for friends and family. I was introduced to Early Childhood Education while in my Sophomore year in high school and since then I have enjoyed working with children and seeing all their little quirks and personalities develop. I am currently in school at Northeastern Illinois University to complete my B.A in Early Childhood Education with an endorsement in Bilingual Education (Spanish & English). The thing I love about ECE is seeing the development, and being able to play a part in those foundations to their future education is an amazing feeling. I just love to see that moment where they learn something new and are able to understand it. In my spare time you will find me attending college, listening to true crime podcasts and spending time with my family and my nieces and nephews (I have 7!). You will also find me babysitting my preschool-aged niece and middle school-aged nephew.