Hugs, smiles and stories are part of the job. OLHSA Head Start Lead Teacher: Nancy Shimel Posted: August 13, 2019 Updated: August 13, 2019

Nancy Shimel, Head Start Lead Teacher

Hugs, smiles and stories are part of the job.













I was always drawn to early childhood. After seeing my children's experience through their preschool, I thought, “That job looks like it would be really fun,” and I made the decision to re-enter the workforce and become a teacher. I was a stay-at-home mom at the time, so I went back to school to get the credentials I needed. The great thing is that OLHSA will help you do that.

As a teacher, it’s rewarding to see where the kids start at the beginning of the year, and how much they grow by the end. You can see how much you've helped them, especially with this age group. What I like about Head Start is that it services the entire family and the children. It’s not just a drop-off and pick-up relationship. There are support staff that work to try to support all the family's needs, whatever they may be. If someone asks for resources, we have them available. We’re making a difference in so many ways.

What’s more, everyone who works at OLHSA is committed to community action. It draws service-minded and people-oriented people. I really respect the people I work with and have made some incredible friendships. We all have teaching partners and I have been really fortunate to have strong assistants in my classroom. It offers another set of eyes and perspective. We talk about what went well and what didn’t go so well in the classroom. So, I never feel like I’m in it by myself. This is also a wonderful career to have as a parent. Your nights and weekends are available to do whatever you need to do in your own personal life. Your breaks usually coincide with the school, so there are no conflicts.

 I’ve been here for seven years, and I still look forward to it. The hugs, the smiles, the stories. Every day is a different adventure.