Preschool Staff
 

Mrs. Sandy Tams - Early Childhood Director & Preschool Teacher

stams@sflutheranschool.com 

1Y01077.JPGYear started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): I began teaching at SFLS in 1977. I taught preschool then and I still teach preschool in addition to directing the preschool and enrichment. 

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: 
I enjoy the children and their families the most. Being the first to “light the fire of learning” and then hear, “I did it!!” is just the best.

Family
: Husband - Jim;  3 children - Jeff, Brad (& Deb) and Amanda (& Brian); 7 grandchildren - Dylan, Tori, Lucas, Sydney, Jace, Kade & Cale and dog, Sugar.

Education: BA in Elementary Ed from Wayne State University 

Hobbies: My favorite hobbies are reading and walking. 


Miss Heather Miller - Preschool & Fantastic Five's Teacher

hmiller@sflutheranschool.com 

1Y11028.JPGYear started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): I actually started at SFLS in 1987 as a Kindergartener and graduated in 1996. However, I began teaching at SFLS in 2011 as an Enrichment teacher at Lord of Life and an AOK teacher at the Central location. 
 
Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: It is very nice to be able to share the love of Christ with the kids, families, and staff members. I also really enjoy the staff that I get to work with and the children and their families. I enjoy getting to know new people and am looking forward to meeting lots of new people. 

About you/your family: My parents and younger brother all live in Sioux Falls, so I get to see them often. I am single, as is my brother, so I don't have nieces and nephews to spoil, but I do have cousins who I enjoy visiting and playing with. 

Education: Elementary Education from Dakota State University 

Hobbies: I like to read, listen to music, watch movies, hang out with family and friends, and visit my grandpa's farm. 
 

Mrs. Susan Olson - Preschool Teacher

solson@sflutheranschool.com

1Y01237.JPGYear started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2016, 3 year old Preschool on Tuesday & Thursday afternoons.
 
Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: My favorite thing about teaching at Sioux Falls Lutheran is sharing Jesus with all of her students.

About you/your family: Ethan is in 5th grade, Luke is in 1st, and Joshua is in Kindergarten all at SFLS.  Benjamin is 3 and will be attending preschool next year at SFLS.  Darren and I have been married for 16 years.  Darren is currently serving as the Executive Secretary of the South Dakota LCMS District.  Prior to this position he served at St. John's Montrose and Zion Lutheran in Canistota for 8 years.  I also grew up on a farm in Truman, MN.  I attended St. Paul Lutheran School in Truman MN and Martin Luther High School in Northrup, MN.  

Education:  I have an Elementary and Middle school education degree from Concordia University in Seward, NE and I have a Masters of Education in Early Childhood from the same place.  
 
I taught middle school language arts 1 year at St. Paul's Lutheran School in Jackson, MO. Then taught 1 year of 5th grade at Christ Community Lutheran School, St. Louis, MO.  Then I taught 7th grade at Immanuel Lutheran School in Bay City, MI.  Then back to Christ Community Lutheran School in St. Louis for 2 years of 4th grade.  (The different places due to my husband being at the Seminary and on vicarage.)  Then I took the call to Zion Lutheran Preschool in Canistota, SD as the head teacher and director.  I served there for 8 years. 

Hobbies: Reading, shopping, traveling, spending time with friends, hanging out with my four boys!

Favorite bible verse: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  Phillipians 4:13


Mrs. Tina Lenz - Kids Day Out Director & Fantastic Five's Teacher

tlenz@sflutheranschool.com

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 1979--1991 (Called to help start grades K-3), Returned in 2006-present.  Currently I am currently teaching Fantastic Fives and are one of the Early Childhood Directors.

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: I love the children in my class as if they were my own children.  I want them to not only learn, discover, create  and use their imagination but to know that Jesus loves them and will always be by their side.  I enjoy seeing the children, I've taught over the years, and learn how God is using them in their own lives in service to others. Seeing and talking with previous students warms my heart!  God has truly blessed my years as an Early Childhood Educator.  
 
About you/your family: Received my BA in Elementary Ed from Concordia-St.Paul, MN and Master's in Early Childhood from Concordia-Seward, NE.  Have taught in South Dakota and Iowa.  I am married to Rod Lenz (college sweetheart).  He is the Educational Administrator for Children's Home Society.  We have 2 married daughters.  Andrea/Steve have 3 children and live in Wichita, KS and Ashley/Derek have 1 son and lives in Des Moines, IA.  Our 4 grandchildren are the lights of our life!

Hobbies: I love to SHOP especially at places where items have been refurbished, love to decorate our home, make crafts, go boating, visit with long-time friends and spend as much time as possible with our our grandkids!
 
Favorite bible verse: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  Proverbs 3:5
 

Mrs. April Kusie - Kids Day Out Preschool Teacher & Discovery House Educational Assistant

akusie@sflutheranschool.com 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2014

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: I love watching the kids learn and grow.  One of my favorite things is watching the “I can’t” turn into an “I did it!”

About you/your family: Husband, Jim; children Emma (15), Sam (12), Ben (10), Katie (7)

Education: I graduated from the University of Sioux Falls in 2000, where I majored in Elementary Education and Early Childhood.  I have taught preschool for the last 15 years and I have also taken care of infants and toddlers for the past 14 years, as the Nursery Director at my church.

Hobbies: When I am not teaching, I am a Soccer Mom, traveling on the weekends to tournaments; I also sell Usborne books.  If there is any time left, I enjoy reading, watching football (GO PACKERS!) and watching Netflix.
 
Favorite Bible Verse: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11
 

Mrs. Brooke Aker - Kids Day Out Preschool Teacher & EA

baker@sflutheranschool.com
 

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Mr. Bhrett Baney - Preschool Educational Assistant

bbaney@sflutheranschool.com 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 1997 Preschool Educational Assistant 

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry:

About you/your family: wife, Peggy; Daughter Emily and Son Ryan and daughter-in-law 

Education: BS from SDSU

Hobbies: bowling, sports


Miss Carrie Congdon - Enrichment Teacher 

ccongdon@sflutheranschool.com 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2008

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: Most enjoyable aspects for me are building relationships with the children, parents and my coworkers.  I love teaching in our Christ centered environment and watching the children grow, learn and develop.

About you/your family: Mom, Brother & Sister-In-Law, Sister & Brother-In-Law and 2 nieces and 1 nephew.

Education: BS Early Childhood Education

Hobbies: traveling, spending time with family & friends, reading 
 
 

Mrs. Lesa Harr - Preschool Educational Assistant
 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2012

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: I enjoy seeing the kids mature and the excitement they express when they complete a project.

About you/your family: husband Craig; Lucas 7th grade & Levi 1st grade @ SFLS. 
 
Education: MS in Counseling/Human Resource Development and BA English Speech Drama. 

Hobbies: reading, singing, playing piano, camping. 
 

Mrs. Pamela Herman - Preschool Educational Assistant & AOK 
 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2009

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: My most enjoyable part of the ministry at SFLS is helping the children to learn and grow in their knowledge and faith. 

About you/your family: husband Guy; 3 children Charysh, Miranda & Garrett and 6 grandchildren.
 
Education: Presho High School

Hobbies: Camping, crafts, traveling 
 

Mrs. Janelle Henry - Preschool & Kindergarten Educational Assistant

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2015

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: 

About you/your family: husband Justin, 2 boys Taten (14) and Cohen (11)
 
Education: Washington High School

Hobbies: I enjoy shopping and spending time with family, attending all sorts of sporting events from football, hockey and baseball. 
 
 

Mrs. Miranda Jacobsma - Enrichment Teacher, Discovery House

mjacobsma@sflutheranschool.com 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2009

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: What I love the most are the relationship made between the students, their families and myself. Also watching the students grow throughout the year, with their height, academic skills, and social and emotional skills. 

About you/your family: husband, Travis , new baby boy Cooper (2016) and 2 cats - Sadie & Sophie
 
Education: Early Childhood Specialist Associates Degree from Southeast Technical Institute. 

Hobbies: crafts, being outside, reading, watching Twins baseball, listening to music and watching movies. 
 
 

Mrs. Heidi Klein - Enrichment Teacher & Discovery House Educational Assistant
 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2014

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: The most enjoyable part of my teaching ministry is watching how the kids grow both emotionally and academically throughout the year.  I love it when a child goes from saying "I can't" to "I can do this all by myself"!

About you/your family: husband, Amos; children Elijah (4th) , Aurora (2nd) & Elise (1st) at SFLS 

Education: BS in Exercise Science

Hobbies: Dance (especially ballet) 
 
 

Tiffani Meier - Kids' Day Out Educational Assistant T & Th am

 

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Mrs. Jill Nikolas - Fantastic Five's Educational Assistant 
 

1Y01094.JPGYear started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2008

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: The most enjoyable thing about my work is being with the children and being with faith filled coworkers.

About you/your family: Husband Roger; children Allie, Joseph & Micah
 
Education: 2 years at Northern State University

Hobbies: reading, gardening, crafts
 
 

Mrs. Brenda Paulson - Enrichment, Preschool Educational Assistant & AOK
 

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 2013

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: It is rewarding to watch the preschool children develop basic social and academic skills throughout the school year.  Getting hugs from the kids is best reward.

About you/your family: Husband Loren; children Sara, Marisa and Jessica. 8 grandchildren, Austin, Hailey, Cade, Kennady, Maiya, Grady, Brady and Corbin
 
Education: Accounting background

Hobbies: reading, gardening, spending time with family.
 
 

Mr. Jim Tams - Discovery House & Enrichment Educational Assistant

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Year started at SFLS and present teaching responsibility(s): 

Most enjoyable aspects of your teaching ministry: 

About you/your family: Wife Sandy; Children Jeff, Brad and Amanda and 7 grandchildren
 
Education:  BS Degree from UNO in business
 
Hobbies: coin collecting, hunting and fishing