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Little Scholars preschool set to open

By Rick Laney
of The Daily Times Staff

Children have always been attracted to Katie Teffeteller. With parents who operated a successful preschool program for nearly two decades in Florida and a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Tennessee, she always dreamed of being surrounded by kids. Now her dream is coming true.

In the coming weeks, Teffeteller will begin registering students for her own preschool called the Little Scholars Christian Academy, 940 Brown School Road, Maryville. It is a dream she, her husband and her parents have invested in and cultivated for months.

“This has been in the planning stages for about a year,” Teffeteller said. “I’ve always wanted to do something with kids, but I also wanted to be a stay-at-home mom — that was very important to me.

“My parents offered to help get this off the ground, and we just had to take them up on it.”
After looking for property suitable for them to build a new preschool building, Katie and her husband, Jeremy Teffeteller, reluctantly agreed to look at an existing house on Brown School Road.

“We kept telling the real estate agents we didn’t want a house,” Katie said. “We want to build a school, but they convinced us to look at this place and — to our surprise — it was absolutely perfect.

“We pulled in, and it looked exactly like the schoolhouse we envisioned.”

Designed to be a nurturing and creative environment, Little Scholars Christian Academy will help little minds and bodies grow, according to Teffeteller.

“We have great oversized playgrounds that were custom designed,” Katie said.
“And we have a three-acre campus unlike anything else in Blount County.

“We will challenge kids to learn in a safe environment.

“And we’ll pay a lot of attention to each child in small-group settings.

“Children learn through play so there will be a lot of free time for play and exploration in addition to the teacher-instructed activities.”

With students ranging in age from 6 weeks to 5 years old (pre-kindergarten), Teffeteller has already employed four teachers and plans to hire as many as 15 teachers and instructors depending on the number of students who register.

Her teachers are well educated, with an emphasis on creativity and a fresh approach to early childhood development. After interviewing countless applicants, Teffeteller said there were only a few who met her criteria.

“They have to be teachers and have the knowledge to instruct,” Teffeteller said, “but they also must demonstrate that they are creative.

“It has to be fun. We’re all about education, but we’re also about fun.
“We are not a daycare center. We are definitely a preschool.”

Using the popular A Beka curriculum, the Little Scholars Christian Academy will begin registering students over the next two weeks.

For more information about the Little Scholars Christian Academy, go to or call (865) 981-5799.

Originally published: August 26. 2007 3:01AM
Last modified: August 26. 2007 2:19AM
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