Carbondale New School

Serving Southern Illinois since 1974

The mind is a fire to be kindled, not a vessel to be filled

PreK & Kindergartern

The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.

--Dorothy Parker

About Melissa

Melissa Huggins Melissa was born and raised in Rockford, Illinois, and moved to New York in 2007 when her husband was transferred with the military. After several years of exploring New York, and the birth of her son, she and her family moved back to Illinois and settled in Marion. When considering options for kindergarten for their son, she fell in love with the learning atmosphere and feeling of family that CNS offers. She accepted a full-time aide position in the Pre-K/K classroom while her son attended CNS for Kindergarten, and has now been with Carbondale New School for five years. The 2021-2022 school year will be her second year as lead teacher of the Pre-K/K classroom.


Melissa's Philosophy of Teaching

The first thing every child should know when walking into a classroom is that they are loved. Once love and trust are built, anything is possible. Learning should be exciting. I want our students to want to learn, to be excited. I do this by approaching learning in many different ways. Hands on activities allow our students to think outside the box, forming new ways to solve a problem. Group activities provide our students with the opportunity to share ideas and open communication with their peers. Independent learning allows each student to use their own method of learning to build their self confidence. Getting up and exploring the classroom, moving our bodies and learning through play helps to make us confident, independent, eager learners.

Reading Time


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Quantity Item Description
Every Student
1 pkgpre-sharpened pencils
1 pkgcolored pencils
1 boxCrayola™ markers
3 boxesCrayola™ crayons
1 setwatercolor paints
1 pairscissors
1hard 8x5 pencil-box
2pocket folders (pref. plastic)
1 pairindoor shoes
1bag guinea-pig paper bedding
1pkg guinea-pig food
1bag guinea-pig hay
1 bottleschool glue
1large backpack
1 pklarge construction paper
1 bottleLysol™ spray
1 pkpaper plates
1 pkcolored cardstock
1 pksmall construction paper
1 pkLysol™ wipes
1 rollpainter's tape
1 pkwhite cardstock
PreK Only
1small pillow & blanket
1yoga mat
Kindergarten Only
1Kindergarten journal

Last updated 07/18/2023. Be sure to check out the Wishlist tab!

  • Scotch laminating sheets
  • Play-doh™
  • Fabuloso
  • Swiffer pads & solution
  • washable paint