Welcome to our Preschool and Child Care in Madison
545 Zor Shrine place, Madison, WI 53719 Conveniently located behind REI
Call Us+1 (608) 622-1771

Meet Our Teachers



We are proud of the diversity of our teachers’ educational and professional backgrounds and the array of talents they bring to The Well!

Our staff is committed to reaching the required annual training and professional development hours and we encourage teachers to be creative with their continuing education so that they can hone their skills and learn more about subjects they are interested in and passionate about.

Our teachers are all up to date with CPR, First Aid, SIDS/SBS and Child Abuse & Neglect trainings and certifications.


Seedlings  (Infants/6 Weeks – 1 Year Olds) 

Julia Brown, Lead Teacher: Miss Julia holds her BA in Psychology from University of Wisconsin – Madison. Prior to The Well, she worked with children in camp settings, as a nanny, and taught at Madison Sports & Recreation (MSCR) summer programs. She loves sports, music, traveling and pretty much anything there is to do outside during Madison summers.

Diana Tyler, Lead Teacher: Miss Diana has been caring for children since she was 10 years old. She has a BS in Early Education and has worked children from ages 2 weeks old to seniors in high school, however her passion is working with the little ones! She is a grandma of three wonderful boys (with another grandchild on the way). She enjoys all the smiles and hugs she gets from our Wellies, and has rocked and cuddled more children than she can count during her career!

Sprouts (Toddlers/1 Year Olds)


Teacher Breanna GuentherBreanna Geunther, Lead Teacher: Miss Breanna has 4 years of experience coaching high school softball and leads our Wellies Sports Days, which focus on skills like teamwork, cooperation, and coordination, with the preschool classes in addition to being a Sprouts teacher. She enjoys sports, music, movies and cooking.




Miss Maria, Yoga Teacher

Maria Vasilev, Assistant Teacher: Ms. Maria is not only a Sprouts teacher, she practices yoga with our young yogis. She has been teaching yoga for 2 years, and holds her BS in Sport & Physical Education. She also enjoys practicing gymnastics, which she has done since she was a child.


Saplings (2 Year Olds)


Teacher Shawn VasquezShawn Vasquez, Assistant Teacher: Mr. Shawn has 5 years of experience providing ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) therapy for toddlers and children ages 4-10 years. He has 10 years of experience performing stand up and improv comedy which comes in handy when working with the Saplings! He enjoys dancing, nature walks and performing.



Teacher Alisha St. PierreAlisha St. Pierre, Lead Teacher: Alisha, or “Ms. Lish”, earned her MA in Urban Special Education from Cardinal Stritch University and a BA in Journalism & Mass Communications from UW-Milwaukee. She has 10 years of teaching experience and enjoys creating things and performing improv. She runs Drama Workshops for the 4K students (Willows) that focus on social & emotional development. She is a Well parent to a Blossom.         

Blossoms (3 Year olds)


Teacher Ellie HeikingEllie Heiking, Lead Teacher: Miss Ellie has a degree in Corporate Health Communication & Health Promotion from University of Wisconsin – Whitewater. She has 8 years of experience in childcare. Passionate about fitness, she’s competed in 2 mud runs, 3 Susan G. Komen “Race for the Cure” events, and several other runs just for fun. She loves to incorporate activities that focus on wellness and nutrition in her teaching.

Willows 4K Program (4-5 Year Olds)


Rhyannon Yates, Lead 4K Teacher: Ms. Rhyannon holds her Associate of Arts in Education from Florida State College and is currently pursuing her BA from UW-Milwaukee. With an extensive background in teaching and copywriting, Rhyannon loves teaching literacy concepts through fun, interactive activities. She is also passionate about science and runs our preschool “STEAM Lab”. She is the parent of 3 daughters, one of whom is a Blossom.

Dakota Popejoy, Lead 4K Teacher:  Miss Dakota worked as a camp counselor through the Price County 4-H organization where she gained experience helping children learn at all ages. She recently was in sales & marketing but made the switch back to working with kids, and into early childhood education, because she’s always had a passion for seeing young children grow and succeed in the things that they love.

Enrichment Learning & Support Teachers


Teacher Jiabao Zhang

Jiabao Zhang, Lead Teacher: Mr. Jiabao holds his MA in Music from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, a BS in Project Management, and a BE in Finance. He has 3 years of experience in childcare. He is an opera singer and loves food & travel.  He teaches Mandarin Language Learning and Voice Lessons. He also supports the preschool classes. He is the parent of a Blossom!


Teacher Allie SachtjenAllie Sachtjen, Senior Lead & Support Teacher: Ms. Allie has her Associate’s in Early Childhood  Education and 10 years of childcare experience. Allie was a lead infant teacher and now supports all classrooms as she works part-time while pursuing her degree in Dental Hygienist program at Madison College. She enjoys cooking, baking, hiking and traveling.


Geovanna Agobian, Lead Teacher: Ms. Geovanna holds a BSA in Dentistry and has two years of previous childcare experience. She loves listening to music and enjoying life in general! She delights in supporting the infant class, as well as many other projects around the school. She is the parent of a Seedling!

Samantha Buckley: Ms. Sam is a New York native with over ten years of classroom experience. She has degrees in early childhood education from the University of Wisconsin- Madison and the Teachers College at Columbia University.  She believes the best part of teaching is empowering students to take charge of their own learning. Outside of teaching and learning, she enjoys spending time with her family and rescue pup, hiking, swimming, and eating her way through Madison.  She is also the parent of a Seedling.



Volunteer Deena Grass

Deena Grass, Learning & Curriculum Volunteer: Miss Deena is a retired elementary teacher who taught for 30 years and now shares her knowledge, expertise and resources with our teachers. She also finds us really great learning materials! She holds her BA and MA in Education. She is a proud grandmother to 9 grandchildren.