Second Grade

Jill Demco, Second Grade


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Mrs. Demco has been teaching at St. Ambrose since 2006. Before coming here, she taught kindergarten and first grade at a local area Catholic school. Mrs. Demco attended the College of St. Catherine, where she received her Bachelor’s Degree, and the University of St. Thomas, where she received her Master’s Degree.

The idea of working with children and their families is what made Mrs. Demco decide to go into education. She believes all children are unique and meeting each child’s diverse needs is a priority for her. She feels that a child’s talents and areas for growth both need to be recognized, and that she works hard every day meeting their needs, improving their skills and enriching their love of learning. She wants her students to feel comfortable participating and actively learning in her classroom and strives to create an environment where all her students feel loved, appreciated and respected. She loves teaching language arts and reading. Mrs. Demco enjoys reading herself and feels that her enthusiasm for reading shows in her teaching. She loves discussing books with her students because their perceptions and interpretations of literature can be very interesting!

Mrs. Demco feels that being part of a Catholic school means being part of a tightly-knit community. She feels that St. Ambrose encourages close relationships among families and among teachers, which are both important to her. She also loves biking, visiting museums and zoos, and attending movies with her children.

“One thing I have learned from working with second graders is that just when I think I’ve seen everything, a student will say or do something altogether unexpected and original. Their perceptions, personalities and individuality make every day and every hour unique, valuable and unpredictable. I wouldn’t trade jobs with anybody.” – Jill Demco

Jessica Strassener, Second Grade


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Mrs. Strassener started teaching at St. Ambrose in 2011. Before coming here, she taught second grade, third grade and seventh grade at different local area Catholic schools. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in elementary education from the College of St. Benedict. Mrs. Strassener has earned her Master's degree in education from Saint Mary's University.

Mrs. Strassener can remember wanting to become a teacher since the first grade. Because of the warm, caring environment in her elementary school, she knew she wanted to return and work in a similar setting. To her, teaching felt more like a vocation than just a job. She believes it is her job to help students grow as well-rounded citizens of the world, and her goal is to include a variety of methods in her teaching to help students explore and express themselves in different ways. Mrs. Strassener recognizes that each child is unique and makes sure to differentiate her instruction to ensure all students are learning to the best of their abilities. She strives to create a climate of community in her classroom and does so by having students participate in community building activities, problem solving as a group, and group projects. Mrs. Strassener feels it is very important for her students to know that she cares about their academic success, happiness and well-being, and that students should support one another and show the same care for their classmates.

Mrs. Strassener has attended and worked for Catholic schools her entire life and feels that it is her calling to teach in a Catholic school. She loves teaching students about the Catholic faith and seeing those lessons being carried out in how students treat one another. Mrs. Strassener enjoys being physically active and was a part of an organization called “Girls on the Run”, where girls in the community are provided with positive resources for living healthy and happy lives. She also has been involved at her own church, including teaching Sunday School.

“What I have learned from working with second grade students is the incredible curiosity this age possesses. Students in second grade are excited to learn anything and everything new. I am always astounded by how second graders soak up information and continue to want to explore more. Second graders are also very thoughtful and observant to the world around them. Second grade is a very fun grade to teach!” – Jessica Strassener

Megan McEnaney, Second Grade


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Ms. McEnaney started teaching second grade at St. Ambrose in 2013. She attended Saint Mary’s University, where she received a B.A. in Education.

Ms. McEnaney always wanted to teach at a Catholic school and credits her amazing teachers in elementary school that she works hard to emulate now. She loves the idea of an environment full of faith and love. She believes it’s important to incorporate hands-on activities in the classroom, whenever it’s possible and feels it’s crucial for students to have the opportunity to see, feel and understand what they are learning and not just listen to the lesson. She feels it’s her job to make sure each student’s unique learning style is met within each lesson. She strives to have a classroom that provides a welcome and family-like environment and she wants every student in her class to feel safe and excited to learn every day.

Ms. McEnaney enjoys spending time with her family and friends and loves to bake, be outside and be involved with animals. She also loves to travel and has been to six different countries – including doing her student teaching in Ireland!

“I have learned to never expect anything. You never know what a student is going to say or do, but that’s what makes this such an amazing job!” – Megan McEnaney