TERRAVIVA’s COMMUNITY OF EDUCATORS IS SUCH A DIVERSE AND MULTICULTURAL TEAM AND WE ARE PROUD TO EMBRACE THE TRUE CANADIAN IDEAL!
ANDREA C. LOPEZ MARTHEYN KINDERGARTEN CASA MONTESSORI DIRECTRESS/FOREST EDUCATOR HEAD OF SCHOOL When I came to Canada 20 years ago, I felt as if I came into a very special land with a very special mission. Deep in my heart I knew I wanted to teach children about the Natural World and assist them in their journey, inspire them and get inspired by their simplicity and love for learning. I went to York University and studied Environmental Studies with emphasis in Education. I worked for 5 years as a Nature Specialist at Camp Robin Hood in Markham, Ontario, developing Nature and Recreational activities for children 3-12 years. I found the Montessori Philosophy in 2009 and I felt in love with this wonderful way of teaching. I decided to enrolled in the Toronto Montessori Institute; I became a Montessori Teacher in 2010 and found my first job as a Directress at one of the Montessori Schools here in St Catharines where I taught for 4 years. During my years of teaching at Beyond Montessori, My classroom was enhanced with the Spanish Language and my students would participate in outdoor educational activities on a daily basis. When the time was right, I decided to step out in faith and bring about the vision I always kept it dear to my heart: My own Montessori and Nature Program! We have been in operation since 2016, serving many families of the Niagara Region through our unique Spanish Montessori and Nature programs. My three children and my husband have been my companions in this great journey, supporting me, teaching me the great life lessons as a mother would learn. I am very grateful for this -one of a kind- opportunity to assist parents with their children's education and most of all I am honoured to have such a trust and support from our families and the community alike. I strongly believe that “You can only do small things with greater LOVE.” And although our school community is growing, in our hearts we will continue to keep the Flame of Love burning with passion and commitment to all our children in our care!
SANDRA HOLDERNEY TODDLER/PRESCHOOL/REGISTERED EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATOR SUPERVISOR Hi! I graduated from Niagara College for Early Childhood Education. And became a Registered Early Childhood Educator in 2010. I have worked in a variety of childcare centres throughout the Niagara Region, I have learned useful skills that have helped me along my journey in the Early Childhood Education Field.
Beginning at an early age I knew I wanted to work with children. Although I don’t have children on my own, I am married and have a dog who is a beagle named Charlie. We enjoy taking walks around the Niagara Region. I look forward to being part of the Terra Viva team!
ROSEMARY NELSON TODDLER/ PRESCHOOL BILINGUAL MONTESSORI ASSISTANT I am originally from Nicaragua. My native language is Spanish, I have lived overseas in England and Spain where I studied different courses in business. 1982 I came to Canada and decided to study Early Childhood Education in British Columbia and the Montessori Philosophy in Toronto. I have been a preschool teacher since 1992. I have fond memories of all the children I have taught in the past. I am a mother of twins. Have a husband and have 4 grandchildren, who are all a blessing to me. I am happy to be a part of this team of educators, and look forward to meeting all the new Terra Viva children and their families!
BELEN VIGLIONE TODDLER/PRESCHOOL BILINGUAL MONTESSORI ASSISTANT Hola parents! I am Belen and I am from Argentina!. I have been living in Canada for the last ten years. For the last two years I have gained experience working with children as Early Childhood Assistant at Grapeview Public School in the Before/After school program and at the Walker YMCA Active Kids division program. Now I am part of the Terra Viva Montessori as a Bilingual Assistant, helping children to strengthen their foreign language and I am very happy to be a part of this program. I am also, a mom of two kids, seven and three years old boys whose names are Arthur and Thomas. We are a beautiful family. I am married and I have a dog who is a black lab named Zeus ! We love being outdoors and enjoy playing sports all year round!. We speak Spanish at home giving our children the ability to speak our native language not only with us but with my family who are all in Argentina. I believe Bilingual children are more open to acceptance and tolerance to different cultures. And that is precisely why I have chosen to be a part of this wonderful and unique school. I can't wait to meet all my friends and make wonderful memories! See you soon!
CATHY LEE PRESCHOOL CASA MONTESSORI DIRECTRESS AND REGISTERED EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATOR
Annyeong! My name is Cathy. I am thrilled to join the Terra Viva Montessori community! I would like you to know little bit about myself. I graduated from Niagara College in Early childhood Education in 2016. I always wanted to learn something more about teaching the children. That’s when I decided to be a Montessori teacher and graduated with a Montessori diploma in 2018. Since then, I have been working with children with various age groups from toddler to grade 4. I love to see how the Montessori approach of learning help children grow independently in their own and unique way. Since I have acquired significant experience in this field for the last five years, I am confident that I will do my best to help the children of Terra Viva develop and learn in a prepared and safe environment.
I also love spending time in nature. I truly believe that forest and nature put every child at the centre of learning. I am excited to join in with the children’s own adventurous learning throughout this new journey of the year and being a part of their educational experience!
ANNE JENETT KINDERGARTEN CASA MONTESSORI DIRECTRESS Hallo! I fell in love with the Montessori approach to education while studying psychology and counselling in Berlin, Germany, and acquired my Montessori diploma years later, in 2008, while raising my four children here in Canada. Having worked in different classroom settings while always continuing my own journey of lifelong learning and growth, I am passionate about supporting each child as a unique individual while fostering a sense of community for the group as a whole. Life, for me, has always been about growth. And a holistic, well-rounded and joyful approach learning is at the centre of that! My purpose at Terra Viva is to make my contribution towards creating a better, healthier and more wholesome society and future for our beautiful and amazing children.
MARLA MIRANDA PRESCHOOL CASA BILINGUAL MONTESSORI ASSISTANT Hola, I am a Spanish native speaker from El Salvador with over 10 years of experience in Early Childhood Education and the Montessori method. Understanding this approach of learning has helped me in a great deal to develop the skills needed to communicate effectively with the children at their level and also encouraged me to embark in this educational journey as an owner and director of a Montessori Daycare in El Salvador. Thanks to my experience as an Early childhood Educator and business owner in El Salvador, I have acquired an excellent disposition for teamwork as well at working independently. Moreover, I love introducing children to the Spanish Language through creative circles that involve singing, dancing, playing and movement.
Growing up in San Salvador, El Salvador, I have fond memories with nature. Climbing volcanoes was my favourite thing to do! In 2018 I moved to Canada with my husband and my three children,13, 11 and 8 years old. Working with children is what I love and it is a way to make the world a better place. I enjoy reading, watching documentaries and travelling with my family. I love nature, and more specifically beaches and mountains. I am so happy for this -one of a kind- opportunity to teach about my language and culture to all the children at Terra Viva Montessori.
DANICA DOUCETTE TODDLER PRESCHOOL ASSISTANT/FOREST ARTS EDUCATOR AHOJ! I am originally from Slovakia. I started my artistic and creative journey working for my sister's theatre company in Slovakia, where I learned the art of Puppetry and storytelling. I love using the art of storytelling to encourage children to create powerful connections with the world around them and promote creative thinking, self expression and empathy.
I am also a drummer, and I experienced performing all over Europe and South Korea. I bring this connection with music to the table to inspire children in their music journey and the performing arts. Moreover, I am a mother of three boys, and my desire to work with children in a Montessori school has always been my vision. I am is looking forward to taking this new opportunity and sharing my experiences and expanding my knowledge while making a child's day joyful and bright!
STEF KRAMER Forest /Outdoor Recreation Educator Mr. Stef Kramer is an outdoor enthusiast and a father of two children, with vast knowledge in wilderness Camping, Fire building and safety, knife handling and sharpening, fishing, hiking, knots and the use of camp tools. Furthermore, Stef has also worked with children and youth coaching them in soccer and cycling. He has advanced knowledge in watersports; sailing, snorkeling, spear fishing, kayaking, canoeing and water safety. In the past Mr. Kramer has worked as a tour guide and a bicycle mechanic in Niagara, France, the US and Mexico. He also trained, raced and conducted bicycle repair clinics. Mr. Kramer is really thrilled to join our team and he is looking forward to the experiences that that come with this new challenge.
ASHLEY EARLE Forest school Bilingual French Assistant I am very excited about working at Terra Viva!. I have always had a passion for child care and the outdoors. I have two years experience working in summer camps and I know I could bring my experience and knowledge to ensure your campers will have an amazing time! I am currently enrolled in a undergrad at Trent University in English Literature and French Studies. Therefore, I can speak French effectively and have excellent writing skills in both English and French. After my undergrad I plan on applying to teachers college. I have always been drawn to this career path because I am eager to guide children into becoming the best versions of themselves in their future. In 2019, I worked as a camp counsellor at the YMCA. I learned so much about what makes a safe and exciting experience for campers. Each week I was able to create lasting relationships with the campers and my co-counsellors that added to the camp culture. I am well versed in proper language to use among campers and many problem solving tactics that will help avoid problems. In 2020, I worked for STEM camp as a customer service representative over the phone. I was speaking with parents about their options for virtual summer camp. This experience taught me so much about how to communicate effectively with parents and guardians and how to ensure them that we are doing our best for their child. Although this experience was difficult, I am grateful to now have the knowledge to handle different problems that may arise at camp. I truly admire the vision of inclusion by teaching children to appreciate the outdoors. These are morals and skills that I think any young person can benefit from. The best way to learn and make memories is truly by spending time in nature with your friends. In this age of technology where children have the world at their fingertips, it has never been so important to learn about your surroundings in nature. I look forward to making fun memories with Terra Viva children and I also like to add that I have a complete arsenal of camp songs just waiting to be shared!!!
ALVARO GLASER Montessori/Forest Office Admin Manager Hola, ¡qué tal! You can always call me Al, short for Alvaro! A native Spanish speaker who moved to the True North in 1994. Back in my native country of Colombia I completed a B.A in Economics, then here in Canada I graduated with a B.A in Environmental Studies with an emphasis in Urban Planning. I also completed a degree in TESL and worked as a Spanish Instructor privately and for the Spanish Centre in Richmond Hill with focus on children, before I moved with my lovely wife Andrea to St Catharines. In the past I have worked in sales and marketing with organizations such as Best Buy and Sony electronics and managed retail stores like Henry's Camera and the Body Shop.
I treasure my passion for nature walks and exploration with children, I also enjoy playing tennis and trying to be my 3 children's coach in their daily lives as they foray into hockey, basketball, soccer, drumming, piano and other wonderful activities. Children are without a doubt, the gift of life and I love to teach while learning from them because they are indeed little masters of life. As of late I have developed a fervor for drumming! Nothing keeps us healthier than a great sense of humor so you will hear many jokes from me!