Dolores-Employee Spotlight-Horizons For Homeless Children
Life at Horizons

Employee Spotlight

Dolores-Employee Spotlight-Horizons For Homeless Children

Dolores Castillo 

Infant/Toddler Teacher

July 2006

Describe a day in the life of your role at Horizons.
I come in and I teach the children each day. I enforce the curriculum while catering to each child’s needs. Most children have specific needs, whether it’s behavior, language, or individual, I make sure to cater to those with each individual child.  For example, there are days where one child will come in very active and energetic while another child will come in very upset. I help tend to both of them while teaching class activities. Books have been very helpful to use with children, no matter the circumstance that day. Interactive books are especially helpful when trying to work with emotional needs.

Each day I assist with the kids coming in, washing their hands, helping prep breakfast, play with them during free time, and help coordinate circle time with books. We then go to the playground, change lots of diapers, eat lunch, brush our teeth, have nap time, participate in activities, and then enjoy free play.

What do you like most about working at Horizons?
I like that the staff works as a team; it’s a family atmosphere. It’s great being able to work together to help the children in the best way possible. It’s also nice to be able to work with the parents. When they are happy and confident to have their children at Horizons, it makes me feel good.

I also like being able to speak Spanish with the children and getting to see them develop their language skills to become bilingual.

What’s a goal you hope to accomplish while at Horizons?
I’m currently working on a goal, so I’d like to continue it. My goal is to become completely fluent in English. I started out knowing very little English. Horizons has helped me with practicing my English and I’ve also been taking English classes.

I also hope to continue being a teacher for as long as possible at Horizons because I love it!

What is something you’ve learned at Horizons that has affected you the most?
I’ve learned that catering to children and their needs takes a lot of one-on-one attention.

At Horizons, we give every child individual attention and it takes a lot of work, but the end result is worth it.

Favorite/most powerful Horizons moment?
I don’t have a specific Horizons moment, but I do have some favorite things about Horizons. We have days where all of our staff comes together for trainings and I really enjoy those because everyone is united to learn how to improve our work.

My other favorite part about Horizons is that I get the experience of being a kid again!

Why do you think people should support Horizons?
Horizons has a great system. Our centers provide quality education to children that will impact the rest of their lives. The problem is there are more children in need than we have room for. If we could grow our center’s size, we could help more children.

What’s your favorite childhood memory?
When I was five years old, I decided I liked my cousin’s name more than mine so I decided to change my name [laughing].  Now my cousin asks her kids if there are any nicknames they want to be called.

What was your favorite learning activity growing up?
My favorite activity was to participate in dramatic play with my siblings. I also really enjoyed painting which is great because I can teach the kids how to paint in the classroom.

“At Horizons, we give every child individual attention and it takes a lot of work, but the end result is worth it.”

Horizons for Homeless Children’s passionate employees embody the Horizons’ mission every day in a vast array of ways. The Horizons’ staff is uniquely specialized in several areas to serve to the needs of young homeless children and their families. To join our team, check out our career opportunities!

Published on January 20, 2017