Meet Our Teachers

Nathaly Canas

Originally from El Salvador, Nathaly was raised in Annapolis, Maryland, and settled in Virginia after graduating from high school.

While in high school, Nathaly took college classes and was certified in child care. After she moved to Virginia, she started working with children with disabilities and those who had problems with their second language.

Nathaly has also been active in her church, volunteering to help with vacation Bible school ministry. She calls her church her “second family.”

In her personal time, Nathaly enjoys watching action and dramatic films and reading books by her favorite author Elle Wiesel. In her first year as a preschool teacher, Nathaly says, “Each day is a learning experience and I can’t wait to grow and learn more with our kids from The Good Shepherd Preschool.”

“Since I can remember, I have always loved and had much passion for caring for children. I love preschool and all the learning, exploring and fun we get to experience.”

Katherine Osborn

Originally from California, Katherine says that she knew from a young age that she was called to work with children. She studied early childhood development at Cypress College and Fullerton College to pursue her passion.

“I started working with children when I was 23 and I have never wanted to do anything else,” she says. She worked in the after-school program and as a substitute preschool teacher with the Centralia School District, and as a lead toddler teacher with Eastside Christian Preschool in Fullerton. She also served as a lead infant/toddler teacher and preschool teacher with the Fort Irwin Child Development Center.

Katherine welcomed Christ into her life at the young age of five while she and her family attended Calvary Chapel in Anaheim. As she got older, she volunteered to help with the children’s minister.

As a young adult, Katherine attended City Church of Anaheim, which was established as part of Transformation Ministries. There for several years, she helped run the children’s ministry as well as the information table to assist new and regular members.

“I felt from a young age that God was calling me to work with children. I enjoy learning just as much from the children as they learn from me. This has always been more then just a job to me; it’s my calling to make a difference in young children’s lives and teach them what God has in store for them.”

Brandi Breivik

A Fredericksburg native, Brandi has been working in teaching and childcare for over five years now. Beginning as an elementary school assistant teacher she started this career after completing her degree in Education at Germanna Community College.

 She says that she’s known she’s wanted to be a teacher since high school, and has jumped at the chance to work with young ones ever since. 

 Brandi accepted Christ into her life at eleven years old, and since then has been attending and volunteering at Sylvania Heights Baptist church, where she teaches Sunday school and assists with the children’s ministry.

 In her free time, Brandi enjoys creating artwork, sewing, and making music. 

“Working with children is what I am most passionate about. Nothing has ever felt as right as helping to teach little minds, especially in a God-centered environment like this preschool.”

Alexis Hart

Alexis Hart is a Fredericksburg resident, although her family is from Tennessee on her mother’s side and Maryland on her father’s side. Alexis graduated from Courtland High School in 2019 and is currently attending Germanna Community College where she is working on an associate’s degree in teaching kindergarten through 8th grade. After she graduates from Germanna, Alexis plans to pursue her bachelor’s degree in education.  

When she’s not working or studying, Alexis’ hobbies include listening to music, reading, and going out and about with her family. Beyond that, she also describes herself as being passionate about animals and helping people.

Alexis currently attends Hillcrest United Methodist Church. She says that God has always been an important part of her life. “I came to The Good Shepherd Preschool looking for a workplace that would give me the experience to be in a place where I can worship God and work. I truly appreciate the atmosphere at the school, and working with the children has made me beyond happy. They have stolen my heart!”  


“I feel as though I was always meant to be a teacher. Children have always been a gift from God in my eyes. At the preschool age they have no idea about the world around them; they are innocent little angels! I love how each child is talented, skilled and creative in their own way!”

Shannon Nowotny

Shannon grew up in a small church that had a private Christian school and was exposed to the gospel at a young age. She gave her life to Jesus at the tender age of 5. She says she understood that Jesus paid a price for her sins, and that she had a choice to make to receive the free gift of salvation.

Shannon’s mother was a teacher at the school that she attended, and from watching her passion for training children to become disciples of Jesus, Shannon was inspired to want to become a teacher who leads children to Christ, too.

Throughout Shannon’s teenage and young adult years, she was involved in every church function that involved caring for children. She served as a Sunday school teacher, a basketball camp leader, a vacation Bible school leader and a leader at a kids’ evangelistic campaign called Saturday Night Sunday School.

After Shannon graduated from high school, she studied early childhood education at Anne Arundel Community College, and subsequently finished her bachelor’s degree at the University of Mary Washington. Shannon says that through her years of experience as a teacher, “I find this profession to be very fulfilling.”


Alex Zea

Alex, originally from Nicaragua, has lived in Virginia for the past 14 years. She is married with two sons, 9 and 5 years old.  As a family they enjoy taking vacations as a family to the beach and Kings Dominion. They love animals and have a few pets to include: two dogs, a bunny, a hamster, and a lizard. In her free time Alex enjoys going to the gym, eating healthy, and gardening. 

She has been a volunteer at Highway Assembly of God for the past three years, first in the nursery and now in the Children’s Ministry. Alex loves getting to know and teaching children.