Maria Montessori called the adult in her classroom a Directress. Since this term is not commonly understood outside of the Montessori environment, we refer to our adults as Teachers and Assistants.
Director; Toddler Teacher
Mrs. Owens has been a teacher and administrator in Montessori schools in this area for over thirty years. She has an Early Childhood Education degree from Notre Dame, and completed her graduate degree and AMI Montessori training at the Montessori Institute in Washington, DC.
Mrs. Owens’ background helps her provide guidance to the staff and to families as they experience the Montessori program. Her natural connection with children creates a warm and welcoming atmosphere where children can develop socially, emotionally, physically and cognitively.
“Education doesn’t need to be reformed, it needs to be transformed. The key to this transformation is not to standardize education, but to personalize it; to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of each child; to put students in an environment where they want to learn, and where they can naturally discover their true passions. Learning never exhausts the mind. I love seeing the children grow into independent individuals. It is truly a pleasure to be part of your child’s process. Thank you!”
Acting Primary Teacher
Mrs. Pedersen came to us looking for a Montessori school environment for her granddaughter, who she cares for while her parents are working. We were able to talk her into helping us start our Primary program, and she has indeed helped us get the program off to a great start. She plays ukelele and sings with the children, and also teaches them sign language. Our Primary class has grown from two children when we opened in October to twelve in May, and Mrs. Pedersen has skillfully integrated all these new children into the class.
Her permanent home is in Wisconsin, where she will return later this year. We will miss her, but are glad her granddaughter will stay with us.
Incoming Primary Teacher
Mrs. Didavi joins us in the Fall of 2013, teaching our Primary class. She has been commuting from her home near us to Annandale for several years, and is looking forward to a much shorter trip to work. Her experience with pre-K and Kindergarten students in a Montessori Primary class will prove valuable as several of our current students are moving into those ages in the fall. Mrs. Didavi holds an AMI Primary certification from the Ohio Montessori Training Institute, and a BA and MA from George Mason University.
Mrs. Phillips worked at a Montessori school while completing her BA in Early Childhood Education at Hood College. After earning her AMI Primary certification at the Washington Montessori Institute, she worked at a Montessori school in southern Maryland for 12 years.
While growing up in Gaithersburg, Mrs. Phillips felt a strong desire to work with young children. When she moved to Frederick and had her own children, she was able to continue her career teaching in Montessori schools in Frederick and Germantown.
“I fell in love with Montessori at age 19 when I became an assistant in a Montessori school. Montessori considers the whole child; emotionally, socially, physically, and intellectually. Teaching manners, and grace and courtesy is important because children need to know what is expected.”
Incoming Toddler Teacher
Joining us in September 2013, Mrs. Andrade was educated and began teaching preschool in Brazil. She received her Montessori Teaching Diploma at the North American Montessori Center in Canada in 2010, and has completed a variety of additional training programs in child care and Montessori preschool. With over twenty years of experience, we are excited to have Mrs. Andrade bring her energy and experience to our Toddler program.
Educated in Columbia, Mrs. Clavijo has cared for young children in this area for the last 13 years. She has completed specialized training in caring for infants, including training on SIDS. Having completed required coursework and exams, Mrs. Clavijo is a fully qualified child care provider. She also has and maintains current CPR and First Aid certifications.
We especially value Mrs. Clavijo’s recent experience establishing an infant program at another center, as she initiates our own infant program.
Owner; Executive Director
Mrs. Fletcher holds an MBA from the University of Maryland, and an undergraduate degree in Computer Science. She is a PMI Certified Project Management Professional, in addition to her certification in Early Childhood Development.
Mrs. Fletcher first became acquainted with Montessori education when her children attended Montessori schools. Now she is dedicated to providing a quality Montessori experience to children of working families.
“Maria Montessori developed her program in a housing project for working families, but today’s Montessori schools do not focus on providing full day care for children. I am proud that our program provides the highest quality learning environment for the whole day.”