INFLUENCER OF THE WEEK: Kylee Carskaden, KLA Schools of Horizon West

Kylee CarSkaden is one of the lead teachers of a 3-year-old class at KLA Schools of Horizon West.

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Kylee CarSkaden is one of the lead teachers of a 3-year-old class at KLA Schools of Horizon West. 

“I’ve had the privilege of witnessing the growth and transformation of my school and all the students in it, and it’s been truly such a rewarding opportunity,” she said of her time with the school. “Six months ago, I had the pleasure of traveling to Reggio Emilia, Italy, with some fellow teachers to explore firsthand what the approach is all about, and it was such a transformative experience.” Tina Le, owner of the school, said CarSkaden is a role model for everyone with her positivity and true passion for early childhood education. “From her well-thought-out learning experiences to her loving, nurturing demeanor, Kylee inspires us all to give our students the best preschool experience possible,” she said. “All of our teachers look up to Kylee, and her students and families love her for all that she does.”

What brought you to your school?

I was drawn to KLA of Horizon West because of its commitment to the Reggio Emilia approach. Reggio Emilia curriculum honors the children, because it is flexible, hands-on, and based around the children’s interests and curiosity. This approach allows children to guide their own learning experiences, giving them a sense of pride and accomplishment. 

What do you love most about your school?

What I love most about my school is its vibrant and nurturing environment. Each child’s creativity, uniqueness and exploration are celebrated every day. 

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is witnessing the growth and development of each child as they discover their unique personalities, interests, talents and capabilities. Knowing that I play a role in laying the foundation for their lifelong learning journey is incredibly fulfilling.

What would you be if you weren’t in this position?

I could see myself pursuing a job in a children’s hospital. I have always cared deeply about children and would want to help them in any way possible and leave a lasting, positive impression on them.

Who influences you?

My biggest influences are my fellow teachers, who continuously inspire me with their dedication, creativity and commitment to providing the best possible learning experiences for our students. 

Who was your favorite teacher when you were in school? Why?

Mr. Henderson in fifth grade. He always found a way to make learning fun and engaging, made an effort to know each child personally, and genuinely cared about each of his students’ well-being.

What is your favorite children’s book and why?

“The Dot” by Peter H. Reynolds, because it illustrates the power of one single adult’s actions to change a child’s life. The book speaks to the importance of teacher-student relationships and our connections as human beings. 

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I enjoy cooking, journaling, staying active, spending time with friends, and experimenting with different art and craft projects. 

If you could dine with any famous person, past or present, who would it be and why?

I would choose Jesus because of his influence on human history; his teachings of love, compassion and forgiveness; and the opportunity to gain insight into his perspective on life and spirituality firsthand. It would provide a unique and transformative experience, offering the chance to engage in meaningful conversation and reflect on timeless truths and values.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?

I would choose the ability to fly. The freedom to fly whenever and wherever I wanted would offer a unique perspective and uninhibited freedom.

What was your go-to lunch and favorite snack as an elementary student?

Grilled PB&J sandwiches and ice cream!

What is your favorite holiday and why?

Christmas, because everyone is full of joy, all the cherished traditions and opportunities to spend quality time with loved ones.

Who was your best friend when you were in school and why? Are you still in touch?

I’ve had many different best friends throughout the years in school, but my best friend from school that I’m still closest with to this day is my friend Haleigh. We have similar personalities, support each other through challenges, push each other to always be better, have fun in every situation and always have each other’s backs. 

What were your extracurricular activities as a student? Did you win any accolades or honors?

As a student, I was involved in track and loved to volunteer. 



Annabelle Sikes

News Editor Annabelle Sikes was born in Boca Raton and moved to Orlando in 2018 to attend the University of Central Florida. She graduated from UCF in May 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in sociology. Her past journalism experiences include serving as a web producer at the Orlando Sentinel, a reporter at The Community Paper, managing editor for NSM Today, digital manager at Centric Magazine and as an intern for the Orlando Weekly.

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