Jan’s love of children goes way back to her babysitting days as a teenager. She majored in child psychology and elementary education and then taught 1st grade for four years at various Catholic schools. When she married Bob Phelan, they decided to have a large family and went on to raise five children, four boys and one girl. When her last child graduated from Methodist Weekday School, Jan wasn’t ready to give up her relationship with the school or the joy of being around preschoolers. So she became part of the teaching staff at MWS–first as a teaching assistant for 1 year and then a lead teacher, co-teaching pre-K 4-year-olds with Chrissi Oliver. Jan says that helping young children navigate their lives socially and intellectually and seeing the world from their eyes always reminds her of the significant difference adults make in the lives of children. Her warm and caring relationship with her students is something they long remember.