MEET OUR EXCEPTIONAL INSTRUCTORS

School surveys continuously reveal that the teachers are the #1 positive aspect of our school. Our teachers are dedicated and caring. They work to connect with each child personally and give each the best possible instruction that they can within the student’s level of skill and ability. SWS teachers are highly educated and experienced. They are committed to their faith and the mission of Catholic education.

Lisa Schneider, B.A.

Lisa Schneider, B.A.

Kindergarten Teacher

About Lisa Schneider

Lisa Schneider is the kindergarten teacher at St. Wenceslaus School. Although she is only in her third year as a teacher, she feels that she has found her home here. She moved to New Prague to accept her dream job teaching at a school that values a Catholic, STEM education. Her teaching philosophy involves small-group instruction and making sure students know they are loved and safe at school every day. She loves teaching kindergarten because kindergarteners experience so much growth academically, emotionally, socially, and spiritually in the quick nine-month school year.

B.A. – Elementary Education – College of St. Benedict

Lisa’s Super Powers

  • Harry Potter Trivia Pro 90% 90%
  • “Let’s Go Wild!” Chant starter 40% 40%
  • Wheel of Fortune Junkie 100% 100%
Jennifer Wetschka, M.A.

Jennifer Wetschka, M.A.

Grade 1 Teacher

About Jennifer Wetschka

Jennifer’s teaching experience has been with the youngest learners, starting with preschool, then kindergarten and finally first grade. She has taught both K and 1 at SWS for the past 13 years. Her passion is in developing a love of reading in her students. Every day there are enthusiastic discussions about books and words in the first grade classroom.

B.A. – Elementary Education – University of MInnesota, Morris

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction – St. Mary’s University

Jennifer’s Super Powers

  • Reader 90% 90%
  • Children’s Book Collector 40% 40%
  • Disney World Fan 100% 100%
Kathy Giesen, M.A.

Kathy Giesen, M.A.

Grade 2 Teacher

About Kathy Giesen

Kathy joins the staff at SWS after teaching in the Catholic schools for the past twelve years. She was a teacher in the 8th and 5th-grade classrooms but found her love for the 2nd grade in her past 4 years. Second-grade students have helped Kathy discover her true passion for teaching. Kathy feels blessed to watch her students grow in their faith as they receive the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Communion. Kathy lives in New Prague with her husband and three children.

B.S. – Elementary Education – University of Wisconsin – La Crosse with a Minor in Mathematics

M.A. – Education – Saint Catherine University

Kathy’s Super Powers

  • Reading 90% 90%
  • Scrapbooking 40% 40%
  • Spending time with family 100% 100%
Carly McDonald

Carly McDonald

Grade 3 Teacher

About Carly McDonald

Carly is a first year teacher and is very excited to begin her teaching career at this wonderful Catholic school. Carly loves teaching all subjects, but especially math. She went to college in Ohio and is so excited to be home and teaching in Minnesota. In college, Carly played lacrosse for her university and was very involved in the athletic department and she is looking forward to her involvement in the athletics here as well.

B.S. – Early Childhood Education – Minor in Theology – Franciscan University of Steubenville

Carly’s Super Powers

  • Lacrosse Player 90% 90%
  • Coffee Drinker 40% 40%
  • Cookie Baker 100% 100%
Ann Christy, M.A.

Ann Christy, M.A.

Grade 4 Teacher

About Ann Christy

Ms. Christy has been teaching full-time at St. Wenceslaus School since 1989 – first as a second-grade teacher (9 years), then as a 5th-grade teacher (3 years), a Junior High Religion and English teacher (15 years) and now again as a 5th-grade teacher since 2016. She enjoys challenging her students with integrated STEM projects and a growth mindset. Ms. Christy teaches her students to play with words, improving their writing and increasing their vocabulary. She also makes time to teach her students a bit of the Spanish language.In her spare time, Ms. Christy has written educational pieces for Venture and Vision magazines as well as for the Center for Mission newsletter.

B.A. – Elementary Education – Saint Catherine University

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction – Saint Catherine University

Certification in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) – Saint Catherine University

Spanish Studies – University of St. Thomas

Ann’s Super Powers

  • Writing 90% 90%
  • Speaking Spanish 40% 40%
  • Praying 100% 100%
Becky Smisek, M.A.

Becky Smisek, M.A.

Grade 5 Teacher

About Becky Smisek

Becky’s journey started in 1999 when she was hired as an instructional aide at St. Wenceslaus. She then taught a few of the physical education classes and was soon placed in the 1st grade classroom as a long-term substitute. Her first official classroom teaching assignment was in 6th grade in 2004 and she remains as the 6th grade teacher today. Becky is always excited to get to know her new students each year and feels very much at home here at St. Wenceslaus School where she is surrounded by great staff, supportive families and God’s guidance.

B.S. – Business Management/Industrial Relations with an Accounting Minor – Mankato State University

M.A. – Education with a Teaching Degree –  Saint Catherine University

Certification in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) – Saint Catherine University

Becky’s Super Powers

  • Loves teaching American History 90% 90%
  • Is a trivia junkie 40% 40%
  • Can make the meanest kettle of Vomacka this side of the Mississippi 100% 100%
Lori King

Lori King

Grade 5 ELA Teacher

About Lori King

Lori grew up in a small town in Ontario, Canada and moved to Minnesota after graduating from college with an undergraduate degree in Child Studies and Psychology, along with a Bachelor of Education in Elementary Education.  Lori’s teaching career began by teaching 1st grade for six years, one year overseas at an international school and the other five years at a private school in Eden Prairie, MN. Lori then returned to college to obtain a Masters in Special Education from Minnesota State University- Mankato followed by four years of teaching in a Special Education setting in Burnsville and Northfield.

Most recently, Lori has worked in the ECFE program in Northfield as well as teaching 5th – 8th grade at Holy Cross. In 2019, Lori joined the St. Wenceslaus team at the 5th grade level. She is very excited to be able to return to her love of teaching reading and writing to students!

BA: Brock University, St. Catharines Ontario
                                                                                                 
BEd: Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario                                                        
MSc: Special Education – Minnesota State University, Mankato 

 

Lori’s Super Powers

  • Being in two places at one time! 75% 75%
  • Traveling 90% 90%
  • Speaking French 60% 60%
Becky Zwirner, M.A.

Becky Zwirner, M.A.

Grade 6 Homeroom & Grades 6-8 Math

About Becky Zwirner

Becky Zwirner has been at teacher at Saint Wenceslaus for 17 years. She has taught grades 5-8 at SWS and really enjoys teaching math and science. Becky attended Minnesota State University in Mankato for elementary education and received her masters from St. Mary’s University. Becky has also added a STEM certificate from St. Kate’s. She likes being able to teach at Saint Wenceslaus where there is focus on the whole child and faith is incorporated in every subject. She expects respect from her students and gives respect back in return.

Becky also coaches softball at New Prague High School. In her free time, Becky enjoys spending time with her family playing cards, solving puzzles and playing games.

B.A. – Elementary Education – Mankato State University

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction St. Mary’s University

Certification in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) – Saint Catherine University

Becky’s Super Powers

  • Teaching Math 90% 90%
  • Giving “The Look” 40% 40%
  • Playing Cards 100% 100%
JIll McBroom, M.A.

JIll McBroom, M.A.

Grade 7 Homeroom & Grades 7-8 Religion, Grade 7-8 Science

About Jill McBroom

Jill McBroom is delighted to be part of the middle school teaching team at St. Wenceslaus School. After staying home with her children, she re-entered the workforce as a preschool teacher at Little Spirits Preschool and an early childhood screener. She couldn’t resist the opportunity to go back to her roots and teach middle school math and science.  Jill has 11 years of experience teaching middle school and believes that students learn best by doing (and having a little fun along the way)! This philosophy blends beautifully with the STEM focus at St. Wenceslaus School.

B.A. – Elementary Education – University of Illinois

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction – Nations Louis University

Jill’s Super Powers

  • Reader 90% 90%
  • Number Cruncher 40% 40%
  • Family Manager Extraordinaire 100% 100%
Jamie Schoenbauer, B.A.

Jamie Schoenbauer, B.A.

Grade 8 Homeroom & Grades 7-8 English, Grades 7-8 Literature, Grades 7-8 Social Studies

About Jamie Schoenbauer

Jamie comes to Minnesota from Ohio after a stint teaching middle school in Austin, Texas. She has been at SWS for 12 years, each one spent in 7th and 8th grade teaching social studies and language arts. Jamie is best known for her rapport with the often-befuddling middle school student. She believes in holding kids to high standards, while having fun at the same time.

B.A. – English Education, Heidelberg University

B.A. – Communication Arts and Literature University of Minnesota

M.A. – In Progress – Educational Studies –  University of St. Thomas

K-12 Reading Certification – In Progress – University of St. Thomas

Certification in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) – Saint Catherine University

Jamie’s Super Powers

  • Reading, writing, but not arithmetic 90% 90%
  • Washington, DC touring 40% 40%
  • Superfan of THE Ohio State University 100% 100%
Katherine Piquette

Katherine Piquette

Art K-8 Grade

About Katherine Piquette

Kate Piquette is an experienced and talented artist and teacher. She taught art classes for many years at St. John’s Catholic School in Savage. Kate uses a special teaching philosophy called “Teaching for Artistic Behavior”, which is a student directed art program. Mrs. Piquette also began the Broadway Musical Theatre, SJB program in the school co-directing the students for 10 seasons with successful productions. She is anxious to work with the student artists of St. Wenceslaus.

M.A. of Education on Curriculum and Development – Hamline University, St. Paul, MN

B.A. of Education – Mount Mary University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Katherine’s Super Powers

  • Italian Cooking 90% 90%
  • Keeping all of the plates spinning 40% 40%
  • Can name all of my grandchildren 100% 100%
Annette Stavos, M.A.

Annette Stavos, M.A.

Librarian Preschool - Grade 8 & Preschool STEM Teacher

About Annette Stavos

Annette has been teaching at St. Wenceslaus School for 19 years. She has worn many hats in her teaching career as a kindergarten teacher, art, physical education, 1st grade, 3rd grade, 5th grade homeroom, 5-8 grade science teacher and currently preschool STEM teacher and librarian. Teaching at St. Wenceslaus School has been a blessing. The students and staff are awesome to work with and this school feels like a big family.

B.S. – Elementary Education – Minnesota State Mankato

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction St. Mary’s University

Certification in ESL (English as a Second Language) – University of St. Thomas

Annette’s Super Powers

  • Making Stained Glass Windows 90% 90%
  • Crocheting, Loves Golf but it does not like her! 40% 40%
  • Reading and Cooking 100% 100%
MIke Tschimperle, B.S.

MIke Tschimperle, B.S.

Physical Education K - Grade 8 Health 7-8

About Mike Tschimperle

Mr. Tschimperle has been at St.Wenceslaus school for 34 years. He enjoys being able to teach physical education to all students K – 8. He thinks it is special to get to know every student in the school and watch them grow from year to year. He also is delusional thinking that the younger students really think he is in his forty’s or fifty. Mr. T as the students call him, likes to golf with his son Ryan, enjoys spending time with his great-nephew Aiden and having more time with his wife Margaret, now that he isn’t coaching as much.

B.S. – Physical  Education and Health K-12 University of Minnesota

Mike’s Super Powers

  • Expert Gardener 90% 90%
  • Traveler and Golfer 40% 40%
  • Reader, Cook and Vikings Fan 100% 100%
Katherine Gorr, B.A.

Katherine Gorr, B.A.

Music Preschool - Grade 8

About Katherine Gorr

Katherine is the music teacher for all grades at St. Wenceslaus. Her goal for all grade levels is for them to enjoy music in its many forms, and have an appreciation for different styles of music.  Katherine is excited to be apart of a family of staff members at SWS. Through singing, dancing, listening, playing instruments and having fun, Katherine strives for all students to leave music class with a smile on their face!

B.A. – Music Performance – University of Minnesota Duluth

Katherine’s Super Powers

  • Off-road Jeeping Queen 90% 90%
  • Hockey and Dance Mom 40% 40%
  • Expert Coffee Drinker 100% 100%
Emily Lehman, B.S.

Emily Lehman, B.S.

Club House Director

About Emily Lehman

Emily Lehman is our extended care Club House Director for students Kindergarten to Grade 8. She recently graduated from Minnesota State University, Mankato in December of 2018 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education. In the mornings, Emily will be teaching sixth grade at Lonsdale Elementary, and in the afternoons, she will be directing the Club House at St. Wenceslaus. Emily grew up and graduated from New Prague High School in 2014. She has been a member of St. Wenceslaus Church her entire life, so she is very familiar with the community and can offer our students many insights and opportunities.

B.S. – Elementary Education – Mankato State University

Emily’s Super Powers

  • Camping and Traveling 90% 90%
  • Coffee Drinker 40% 40%
  • Spending time with family and friends 100% 100%
Elaine Harty, B.A.

Elaine Harty, B.A.

Sacramental Program Director/Instructor

About Elaine Harty

Elaine Harty has been working at St. Wenceslaus School since 1972. Most of those years were spent teaching third grade. She earned her teaching degree from Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her passion is reading, exercising, especially walking, and supporting children to become independent learners.

B.A. – Elementary Education Alverno College

Elaine’s Super Powers

  • Reading 90% 90%
  • Exercising – Walking 40% 40%
  • Supporting children to become independent learners 100% 100%
Kathy McNamara, M.A.

Kathy McNamara, M.A.

STEM Room Coordinator

About Kathy McNamara

Ms. Mac enjoys working part-time after over forty years of full-time teaching. She now organizes supplies and materials in the STEM room and helps with school and parish recycling/composting projects. From spring through fall, you will often find her working in the parish/school gardens.

B.S. – Elementary Education – Mankato State University

M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction – University of St. Thomas

Kathy’s Super Powers

  • Organizer 90% 90%
  • Learner 40% 40%
  • Juggler (of many things) 100% 100%