Understand our Philosophy

We create a warm and welcoming space in which your child can be playfully exposed to the German language and culture. Children have an innate curiosity that informs their learning process. We believe in a child centered and play-based educational approach in which the adults act as a guide and role model.

Bilingual Learning

At Kita on Kains we are passionate about bilingual education and we believe that language is a gift. Even though we are a bilingual environment, we put more emphasis on the German language exposure in our daycare. Just naturally by living in the Bay Area, the English language input for the children is dominant. Therefore, the teachers in our daycare speak more in German read more books in German to the children than in English. We don’t put pressure on the children to choose a language, as we want to allow their language development to happen naturally. Simply by allowing fore more German exposure in our space, the children have a chance to gain more fluency in German.

At Kita on Kains we use music and singing as a tool for language learning.

We sing a lot both in English and German. The repetition of a song, rhythm and music in general, helps us to memorize the words to a song. For bilingual children singing in both languages is a great tool for learning fluency in both languages. Even if at first the child doesn’t understand all of the words, the repetition of the same simple songs can help to make all the different phonetic sounds and also with the time and repetition comes the language understanding. 

Catrina Sheen

Founder & Owner

was raised bilingually by her Scottish mother and her German father. She studied Special Education at the University of Hamburg and Dance Education at the Lola-Rogge-School in Hamburg. In 2002 she immigrated to the U.S. and studied Early Childhood Education in Oakland and Somatic Movement Therapy at the Moving On Centre in Oakland. She has worked in several preschools , dance and German language schools in the Bay Area, including the ShanYee Poon Ballet School, the Bay Area Kinderstube and German School of San Francisco.

Jason Sheen

Co-Founder & Owner

received his BA in English Literature and Comparative Religion at Oberlin College. He studied Early Childhood Education at Merritt College and has preschool teaching experience as an assistant teacher at Grandlake Montessori.

In 2009 Catrina’s and Jason’s daughter Maryam was born, who gave them the inspiration and idea of opening their own daycare facility. Jason loves playing guitar and reading German and English books to the children. 

SusAnne Hesse

Daycare Teacher

grew up in Germany and is a native speaker. Susi is an editor and marketing specialist in publishing. She is a loving mom of two boys and has a lot of experience in volunteering in her kids schools and sport clubs (Germany & U.S.). Susi and her family immigrated to the U.S. in 2011.

She has been working for Kita on Kains since 2016 and is CPR and First Aid certified. She feels very lucky and privileged to work with small children and introducing them to her German culture and language, in the loving and familiar environment.

Nika Seljak

Daycare Teacher Assistant

is currently a student at UC Berkeley studying Global Studies. She has taken Early Childhood Education classes at Berkeley City College and has worked as an after school assistant teacher at both Sarah’ Science and BAKS+.

Nika has been working at Kita on Kains since 2017. She has a passion for both languages and children and enjoys the multilingual environment at Kita on Kains.