Meet Our Teachers

Pyramid Model Poster.pdf

Growing healthy families by promoting the social and emotional development of toddlers and young children with our Program Wide Pyramid Model Implementation

Photo taken: 5/24/2023

We Can Be Problem Solvers! Read by Ms. Karen We are starting Program Wide Pyramid Model Implementation. I hope you will enjoy this book with your child! Watch for additional resources coming soon! 

First day of Summer Camp! Looking forward to rolling the kids around in the mud!

Karen Beck, Director and Teacher - 16 years with UHP

Karen became a part of the UHP community while living in Eagle Heights from 1998-2002.  Her two children, Ellie and Alex, attended UHP. Karen was the Treasurer Board Member, a Parent Helper, and a Substitute Teacher before the Board hired her as the Director.

Karen loves to garden. She has two rain gardens filled with native perennials to help replenish ground water and keep the lakes clean as well as for pollinators. She has a love for insects, bugs, and being outside. She is a backyard beekeeper and has Walking Stick Insects and Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches in the classroom. She enjoys sharing her passion for insects, nature, science, math, and building with the kids! Plus, she loves singing, dancing and doing process art and science as well as hands on projects with the children.

Karen also enjoys kayak camping in the Apostle Islands, Wisconsin and tent camping in the Porcupine Mountains, Michigan.


Karen has been teaching for over 16 years.  Her most recent accomplishment was earning her initial PreK - 3 teaching license through Concordia College receiving it in June 2020.

Jennie Leunig - 2023-24 Morning and Afternoon Teacher and Summer Camp Teacher- Third year with UHP

Hello! I’m Jennie and I’m so excited to be at UHP! I love working with kids, especially at camp or anywhere I can spend a good bit of time outdoors. My favorite summer camp, which I went to for nine summers as a camper and worked at for two summers, is the Concordia Language Villages’ German village, Waldsee.


I majored in Italian and International Studies at UW-Madison and I love learning new languages. This passion has taken me to study abroad years in Germany and Italy, and I am currently in the pursuit of learning French and Spanish. My love for languages coupled with my desire to work with children in a school setting steered me towards speech-language pathology and back to UW, where I am finished up the Communication Sciences & Disorders Capstone Program. When I’m not at preschool or in class, you can find me reading, baking, doing yoga, skiing (if there’s enough snow at Cascade Mountain), singing, or going for a walk by Lake Monona.


UHP is the perfect place to see smiling faces. Thanks for the warm welcome!

Maeve Ryan - Substitute Teacher and 23 Summer Camp Teacher - New to UHP

Maeve is a UW-Madison student pursuing her passion for teaching. She has experience working with small and large groups of children meeting needs and alternative needs with children ages 6 months to 10 years.

Maeve likes to camp and be by the water in her free time.

We are excited to have her join our team!

Pajnra Xiong - 2023-24 Morning and Afternoon Teacher - First year at UHP

Pajnra is a recent graduate from UW-Madison with a double major in Neurobiology and Communication Sciences & Disorders. She is passionate about language development and has volunteered at local elementary schools and cultural summer camps such as the Hmong Phoojywg Enrichment Program. 

Pajnra likes to boulder and hike, having recently visited the Canadian Rockies. When she's not outside, you can find her testing out new recipes, reading, or working on a crocheting project.

Pajnra is excited to join UHP and be a part of our teaching community. 

Renee Deschard - Substitute Teacher - 3 years with UHP

Renee has two children who attend UHP and is also the President of the UHP Board. Renee was a public school librarian for 8 years in Wisconsin and is looking forward to working with children again (and reading fun stories!). Her favorite past times are dancing, listening to music, singing and playing tennis. Her favorite children's book author is Mo Willems. 

Our teachers are the heart of UHP. The work we do together as a team betters the lives of the children and families we serve. If you love children, play-based, nature, and kindness curriculum as well as being outside, you might be a good fit. Please apply by emailing a letter of interest and resume to Here are the job descriptions: 

§  UHP Preschool Teacher 23-24 Academic Year - 

Part time (Build your own schedule):

§  UHP 4K Teacher 23-24 Academic Year  - 

Part time (Build your own schedule):

Pay range is $14 – 18 per hour depending on experience. Teachers receive a Child Care Counts Subsidy through January 2024.

Ms. Karen and Ms. Jennie's first and last day of Preschool for the 22-23 Academic Year! It was a great year!