ABOUT HARRISVILLE CHILDREN'S CENTER
Founded in 1972, Harrisville Children's Center is a non-profit, independent child care center governed by a board of directors consisting of parents and community members. Harrisville Children's Center is committed to providing high quality child care and early education to families living or working in the Monadnock Region of southwestern New Hampshire.
The Harrisville Children's Center offers flexible full and part time programs throughout the year for children ages 6 weeks to 6 years of age. We provide a safe and nurturing environment that promotes the social, emotional, physical, creative, and cognitive development of each child. We maintain low teacher-child ratios so that our experienced and educated staff can identify and address each child's individual needs. Your child's development unfolds naturally as we provide a balance of activities, a respectful environment, and the consistency that each child needs.
The Harrisville Children's Center:
Provides flexible, full and part time programs for children ages 6 weeks through 6 years of age.
Invites families to connect through educational and social opportunities.
Attracts and retains high quality early childhood educators.
Maintains low teacher/child ratios.
Offers a sliding scale tuition discount to low and moderate income families.
Assists families eligible for the state funded tuition scholarship program.
FACULTY & STAFF
Linda MacGillvary // Director
Linda has been the Director of the Harrisville Children’s Center since 2002. She has her Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education/Special Needs. She has taught preschool through grade two in both private and public school settings. She also has experience as an educational consultant, workshop presenter, curriculum developer, and a museum docent. Linda is the mother of two sons, Jonas and Zachary. She enjoys gardening and landscaping, photography, reading, and working on her antique cape. Linda can be reached weekdays at HCC, typically between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm.
Claire Gargan // Teacher - Infant Program
Claire has been working at HCC since August 2012 as Lead Teacher of the Infant Program. She is certified as a NH Infant/Toddler Lead Teacher. She enjoys being a part of a hard-working, dedicated team of professionals who have the best interest of every child at heart. Claire believes in holistic care of infants and toddlers. Each child learns at his or her own pace and needs to be nurtured to their full potential. Claire has more than 30 years’ experience in the field of parenting, teaching and child care and she is the grandmother of one grandson and four granddaughters. She arrived in NH from Southern Africa in 2012, where she taught in elementary schools for 18 years in both Zimbabwe and South Africa as a classroom teacher and school principal. Claire has two Montessori Diplomas from London in the field of Nursery Foundation Education and Primary Teaching and a Hornsby Diploma in Special Education, also from London. She enjoys sewing, knitting, reading, swimming, travel, spending time with her grandchildren, and being an active member of the Harrisville Community Church.
Andrea Clifford // Teacher — Floater/Afternoon Infant Program
Andrea is beginning her fifth year at HCC. She has been working with children over the years since 1995. She has been a preschool teacher for two and three year old children, kindergarten assistant, before and after school program facilitator, and school age summer program leader. Andrea took a hiatus from children’s programs in 2003 to prepare for opening a café/gift shop in Dublin with her mother, which she ran successfully for 6 years. She is excited to continue caring for our tiniest precious ones in her role as afternoon infant room teacher. Andrea lives in Peterborough with her three Russian Wolfhounds and enjoys vegetable gardening, cooking, trips to the ocean and New England historic sites, and spending time with her 7 nieces and nephews.
Erika Curtiss // Teacher - Toddler Program
Erika began her education in Fine Arts at Antioch College where she received her BA in Visual Arts. She then went on to obtain her MFA at Marywood University. Upon graduating from Marywood, Erika moved back home to Keene, New Hampshire after being gone for fifteen years to take care of her grandparents. While caring for her grandparents she came to the realization that art assists in the growth and health of all human beings, young or old. It was then that Erika decided to attend Antioch University New England for both Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education. Her intention was to integrate art into all aspects of the curriculum with the idea that art aides in the formulation of motor skills, the ability to observe, as well as cognitive development. Upon completion at AUNE, Erika joined the HCC community as the Toddler Teacher in January 2012. She is very excited about being with children that are open to opportunities to explore not just art but everything around them.
Gina Wright // Assistant Teacher - Toddler Program
Gina is looking forward to her first year at HCC. She is excited to be the assistant teacher in the Buttercup Room. Gina graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2004 from Chester College of New England, where she studied Art and Art Education. Gina has worked with children in a number of different capacities: an assistant preschool teacher, child care associate, and a Zumba Kids instructor. Gina lives with her husband
in Jaffrey, NH. She enjoys spending time with family, going to the beach, being creative, and teaching Zumba Fitness Class.
Ruth Klingler // Teacher — Afternoon Toddler Program
Ruth is very happy to begin her fifth year at Harrisville Children’s Center. She has a B.S. degree in social work as well as an Associate degree in child development from Ellis College. Ruth has been teaching young children in a preschool setting for twenty years and has also run Eager Beavers, a church-scout club for girls and boys ages four to ten years old. She has a love for nature and brings this interest to the classroom through displays of butterflies and insects, animal collections, and related crafts. Ruth also enjoys hiking, canoeing, fishing, reading, and crochet work. She lives with her husband and two children in Jaffrey.
Jessica Kipka // Teacher — Younger Preschool Program
Jessica is delighted to begin her eighth year at the Harrisville Children’s Center. She finds it absolutely fascinating to explore the world through the curious and wondering eyes of young children. Jessica holds a B.A. in Sociology and a Master’s in Elementary Education. She has taught tennis, swimming, gymnastics, theater, and first grade. Her education in human development has been, and continues to be, supplemented by her own three children who range in age from 16 to 23. Jessica lives with her youngest child (the eldest now lives in Georgia and teaches high school German, the middle is a sophomore in college), her wonderful husband, a fluffy dog, and three silly, black cats in Peterborough.
Lilli Somero // Assistant Teacher – Younger Preschool Program
Lilli is a lover of beautiful things including literature, nature and children, all of which have surrounded her throughout her upbringing and continue to be a reminder providing her with inspiration. Her passions collide through watching the patience and desire of children and their ineffable drive to learn about what surrounds them. Rarely is there a time when Lilli is not with children, at which point she walks local mountains and forests seeking the solitude and calm that comes with the acceptance of time passing, only to drive home to an atmosphere filled with children playing outdoors and laughter all around. Lilli begins her eighth year as an assistant teacher at the Harrisville Children’s Center.
Ellen Winston // Afternoon Teacher – Younger Preschool Program
Ellen is thrilled to be returning to HCC after 3 years at another center working full-time with toddlers and preschoolers. Ellen moved to New Hampshire 6 years ago from Connecticut where she taught preschool and was director of a large child care center for 6 years. Ellen has a BS in Early Childhood Education from Southern Connecticut State University and a Connecticut Director’s Credential. Ellen lives in Swanzey and enjoys
spending time with her daughter, son-in-law, and 2 granddaughters who live in Rindge, as well as visiting her other 2 children and families living in California.
Candice Gagne // Teacher – Older Preschool Program
Candice joined Harrisville Children’s Center in March of 2017 as the lead teacher in the Sunflower Room. She has an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Nashua Community College and has been teaching in the field for 4 years. Candice encourages children to grow and learn through play, hands on experiences, and art. She loves to see the children express themselves throughout the day with different activities. Candice enjoys photography, crafting and going on adventures with her husband and 2-year-old son in Rindge, NH.
Heather Dalrymple // Assistant Teacher – Older Preschool Program
Heather joined the HCC staff in January 2017 simply because she loves children. She respects and appreciates them as individuals and wants to encourage their interests and to help them to sparkle. Growing up, Heather and her family left their home town in Connecticut to live in Brazil, where Heather graduated from Escola Graduada in Sao Paulo. It was an educational and cultural experience she will always value. She finished her education in the states at the University of Tennessee, majoring in Special Education. Heather created and ran a summer program for preschoolers in Connecticut. She worked as a counselor at Crotched Mountain Rehabilitation Center until her daughter was born. Heather ran the Day Care at the Crotched Mtn Ski area. Heather then founded Hancock Baskets Inc. which she still manages. Heather lives at her home in Hancock with her husband Keith and her 2 cats, NaNa and Dizzy Lizzy. She treasures the time spent with her daughter August and her mother. Heather enjoys kayaking, walking, reading, the arts, nature and all creatures great and small.
Karen Baird // Business Manager & Administrative Assistant
Karen began working at HCC in July of 2007. She studied Accounting and Business Administration, leading to a degree at Franklin Pierce College. Karen went on to receive her Master’s Degree at Southern NH University. She has owned Baird Financial Management for the past 26 years, spending the last eight years focusing on the needs of local non-profits. Karen’s responsibilities at HCC include billing, accounts payable and payroll.