Melanie Bacon – Executive Director
Hi, my name is Melanie and I graduated the Early Childhood Education program here at Saskatchewan Polytechnic with a diploma in Early Childhood Education in 2001 and I have had the pleasure of working with children and families for close to 20 years. I have been at Play & Discover ELC since January 2008. In the span of my ECE career I have worked with infants and toddlers in a teen support centre, pre-school children, and school age children in a variety of settings.
I believe very strongly that play and exploration are essential to a child’s development and that each child has valuable skills and knowledge. Through play children learn to make sense of the world around them. When we provide children a variety of materials and great deal of time for open-ended free play they can and will do incredible things. When we believe in children they begin to believe in themselves building strong and capable. It is not for me to decide what they “need” to learn each day; they know and it is our responsibility to respond to those interests with as much curiosity and excitement as they do. We are on this journey of learning together.
I also do consulting and facilitation work around the province for various organizations. I enjoy meeting other educators and learning from them. In 2012 I was a recipient of The Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence in Early Childhood Education. I was a highlight in my career to be awarded such a high-honour in the field that I am so passionate about.
In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my family, friends and listening to music. I have a son who is currently a student at the University of Regina in the Hill School of Business. Watching Lane grow and become an incredible young man has brought me such joy. Now that my son is grown, I spend a lot of time with my two incredible nieces Mackenzie and Breighlee. The girls and I enjoy some “girl glam jam” sessions as we embark on many adventures together.
Welcome to our centre! I look forward to getting to know you.
Lesley Stetner – Supervisor and Educator
My name is Lesley and I am the floor supervisor at Play & Discover Early Learning Centre. I have worked in Early Childhood Education for 10 years, with 8 of them being at this centre. I hold a Bachelor of Arts Education from the University of Regina with a major in visual arts and a minor in drama.
I have worked with all ages levels throughout my years as an educator, and I am passionate about providing a safe, loving, learning environment that allows children to grow holistically – physically, emotionally, socially, spiritually and intellectually. I strive to provide the children with the tools to become confident, independent, self-thinkers so they become successful individuals as they grow.
I was honoured to win the SECA Award of Excellence as an Early Childhood Educator in 2015. I am always continuing with my own learning by attending workshops that help me grow as an educator.
As a floor supervisor, I also work closely with families. My hope is that all families feel important, heard, loved and supported. I am always available to discuss any questions that may arise! I have also used my background in Arts Education to create an Art Program for all of the children. They explore different materials and mediums, learn new concepts, artist studies and some art history, all while having a ton of fun!
I am the proud mama to a wonderful little boy named Fletcher, a partner of 15 years to Nathan and to complete our little family, a fur baby named Tippy.
Ashley Bucsis – Chef
My name is Ashley Bucsis. I am a Certified Redseal Chef. I attended Culinary School in 2013, graduating in 2016 with my Journeyman Certificate. I have been working in the Food Industry since 2012 – covering everything from Fast food, to high end weddings and Banquets. I have been passionate about cooking my whole life, and love nothing more than the satisfaction of creating fresh, new dishes.
With this being my first job directly involving children, I am hoping to bring some nutritional knowledge to the centre and get the children excited to try new things! Nutrition in early childhood is important for cognitive, behavioral, and physical development. I believe a healthy and nutritious diet is one of the most important factors for ensuring that a child reaches optimal development, nourishing their bodies and minds.
When I am not in the kitchen, I enjoy binging on some Netflix Documentaries, drawing, or spending time outside.
Nicole Wall – Educator
Hi! My name is Nicole. I have spent the last 13 years working with children of all ages and their families. I have a passion for helping children learn, create and explore. I have my level 3 in Early Childhood Education and participate in ongoing professional development opportunities.
In 2016 I was honoured to receive the SECA Award of Educator Excellence.
In believe that every child has the right to be treated as an individual. Treating children and their families with compassion, respect and kindness is at the core of what I do. If we provide children a safe space and time to explore, anything is possible.
In my spare time I enjoy going on road trips, camping and exploring in British Columbia, gardening and thrifting. I also own my own small business, “wall flower designs”. I create wall hooks and other small project using upcycle materials. I also enjoy fundraising and getting in involved with my community.
I look forward to getting to know you and your children.
Shannon Filson – Educator
Hi. I am Shannon and I have a certificate in Early Childhood Education. I have been in the field for 14 years. My personal philosophy of Early Childhood Education is to have an enriched environment for the children to learn and grow in.
In my spare time I like to bake, go to tradeshows, go to shows and plays.
Lastly, I would like to share that I received a SECA Award of Educator Excellence which I am very proud of. This award goes to show all of the hard work and dedication I put into being and Early Childhood Educator.
Shaelyn Schill – Educator
Hi, my name is Shaelyn. I was born in Regina but raised in Wawota, Sk. I went to Lethbridge College where I acquired my Level 2 in Early Childhood Education. I have volunteered and worked in the filed for 5 years and my passion continues to grow.
My personal philosophy is that children learn best through exploring freely. We can provide experiences and materials but the children will learn by doing. Children should always feel safe, loved and listened to. I love to spend my time doing yoga or exploring the outdoors. I am excited to be here as an educator and to get to know you and your children.
Brandi Lillejord – Educator
Hi, my name is Brandi. I was born in Regina and raised in the small town of Wawota, Sk. I graduated from the University of Regina with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and I have taken many online Early Childhood Educations classes which have given me a level two certification. I have been in this field since 2002 and have been thinking about obtaining my level 3 but haven’t gotten there yet.
I believe that every child is unique. The way one child looks at and solves a problem is not necessarily the same as another child. It is up to us as educators to support this individuality.
In my spare time I like to read, listen to music and spend time with my husband and my two girls.
Ravinder Dhaliwal – Educator
My name is Ravinder. I was born and raised in India and I came to Canada in 2014. I have a diploma in Early Childhood Education. I completed my education at Sheridan College in Ontario. I have been working as an educator since February 2017.
My personal philosophy is that we should provide children a safe and playful environment which promotes their physical, social, cognitive and language development. Children learn best when they play and when they make mistakes and problem solve.
In my spare time I listen to music, watch movies, play video games, play cricket and hang out with friends. I can also speak four languages; Hindi, Punjabi, English and Urdu.
Caitlyn Anderson – Educator
My name is Caitlyn and I have been in the Early Childhood Education field for 4 years. I convicted with a level three diploma. I have also furthered my education by taking numerous workshops pertaining to early childhood.
In 2017 I received the SECA Award of Excellence and an Early Childhood Educator.
I believe that children are in charge of their own learning and it is our responsibility to scaffold and provide every opportunity for a child to explore that learning.
In my spare time I enjoy reading, sitting in the sunshine and taking walks outside.