The Poppies Room



Children naturally learn through what they see in the world.  Teachers create a developmentally appropriate environment for each child to play, create, move, experiment and express themselves. Children are active learners and need opportunities for choice, independence, and learning through play with real materials in hands-on direct ways. Children’s activities, materials, and classroom curriculum are based on individual development: socially, emotionally, physically, and intellectually. Children are provided a balance of indoor and outdoor time, active and quiet time and individual, small, and large group play.

Children need routine and continuity in the classroom and with adults, so we create consistency in the classroom through predictable schedules and activities. Children express a range of emotions as a natural part of their development. We identify and acknowledge these emotions and create opportunities for children to express them in healthy, constructive ways. Children model what they see. Teachers treat children and other staff with respect, kindness, and empathy. Children are learning how to participate in group activities, get along with peers and develop trust for other adults. We support this task by creating opportunities for meaningful interactions with others, nurturing friendships, and teaching conflict resolution skills at every age. Children express creativity and self-expression through open-ended activities and experiences. Creative, child-directed play is encouraged in many forms such as drawing, painting, music, building, role play, and more.


Andrea, Poppies Teacher

Hello, my name is Andrea.  I have been working at The Learning Gardens since August 2011. I have my Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology with a Clinical Counseling Concentration from Edgewood College.  I also have my Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction teaching license. I was previously a nanny for seven years, a lead teacher for the YMCA after school program, and I taught and designed my own art classes for two years at the Maple Bluff Village Center.  I look forward to having you and your child as a part of the Poppy classroom!



Sarah, Poppies Teacher

Hello!  I’m Sarah Goebel. I grew up in northern Illinois and just moved from the East Coast where my husband was stationed in the Navy and where I got my bachelors at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, majoring in Psychology in 2021. I have a huge passion for teaching social/emotional regulation and coping skills to help build resilience during transitions whether that be in day-to-day transitions or big life events. I love to share my knowledge of children’s love languages and social/emotional child development. I enjoy reading about adolescent mental health and listening to child development podcasts on my drive from Janesville.

My husband and I had our first baby boy, Chase, in February 2022.  He is currently enrolled here at The Learning Gardens as well. I also enjoy learning about American Sign Language in my free time, along with rock collecting/crystals, and astrology. I love playing and being silly with my son and husband.

I love that The Learning Gardens uses play-based learning for the little ones to grow and discover with their imagination. I look forward to growing and learning with your kids and hope to have a fantastic school year.

Favorite quote: “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” – Christopher Robin

Meet Henry!

Henry is a Russian Tortoise and the star of the Poppy classroom.  He enjoys burrowing under the warm heat lamp to sleep, eating and joining the kids outside with a balloon attached to his belly.  In the early mornings when the children start to arrive, Henry likes to watch them come into the classroom and perks up at the sound of their voices.