IMA Team

 

“Whoever touches the life of the child touches the most sensitive point of a whole which has roots in the most distant past and climbs toward the infinite future.”

-DR. MARIA MONTESSORI

We are a team of dedicated Montessorians!  We are honored to spend our days with children who experience tremendous growth and leadership while in our care.  All children have a natural love for learning, a motivation to master skills and a remarkable gift of kindness to those around them.  Read below and discover what enthralls us about a Montessori Education:

CORA DUSTMAN
Directress, Administrator
The Lilac Room

AMS Certification, Seton Institute
BA, Psychology of Human Development and Sociology
Ball State University

“There are so many, many things I love about Montessori!  One of the main things that I love is that Montessori education encompasses the whole child.  Children in the Montessori environment learn and develop so many skills and attributes that are beyond that of academic education (which is extraordinary in and of itself!).  Montessori education fosters the child’s independence, self-esteem, and confidence.  This is all done in addition to learning how to communicate, problem solve, and develop grace and courtesies.  Maria Montessori even acknowledged the need for children to develop spiritually as well.  One of the joys in working in the Montessori environment comes from watching children show kindness, maturity, and the ability to think for themselves.  I love that the Montessori environment allows children to develop their full potential as a whole being.”

SUZETTE VETRINI
Directress,
The Elementary Room

AMI Elementary Training
Montessori Center of Minnesota
Master’s, Marketing of Luxury Goods
European Institute of Design
BA, Political Science
John Cabot University

Suzette hails from Houston, Texas and Rome, Italy.  She is fluent in English and Italian.  Prior to her becoming a Montessori Directress, Suzette was in the fashion industry and also taught English as a second language to private companies.  She has a wealth of knowledge to share and guide her elementary students and brings a depth of cultural learning to our IMA program.

ANGELA SMITH
Assistant, the Lilac Room

BA, Theology and Child Development
Franciscan University

“I am absolutely in awe of the entire Montessori Method and the truths that lie within our classrooms. It beautifully dignifies each child and the potential they hold. The classroom setting allows for students to grow in knowledge and virtue joyfully and gradually. Their eagerness to serve one another is inspiring. I love seeing their curiosity spark, compassion extend, and achievement smile while working in our classrooms! We are so blessed.”

CHEYENNE BADGER
Assistant, the Azalea Room

BA, Art
Ball State University

“I love Montessori because of how effortlessly it aligns with the natural biological progression of the child from a developmental standpoint. Maria Montessori identified areas of  unnecessary hindrance to the child’s development in educational settings, and either modified them or eliminated them entirely. To me, one of the many ways in which this truth is clear in our classrooms is through the progression of the language and writing lessons our directresses give – the rationale behind teaching the child a letter’s sound and shape instead of it’s arbitrary name, and the rationale behind why it is so valuable to teach the child cursive before introducing them to print. Maria Montessori meticulously considered each and every detail when she developed her method, and it still shows to this day. I feel tremendous joy in being part of each student’s journey in our classroom!”

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JENNIFER MOORE
Classroom Assistant,
Aftercare

“What I like about Montessori is every day is different. The kids can work on any subject in the room for as long as they wish, as well as decide if they would like to work alone or work with a friend. I also like that they can freely travel around the room or choose to observe a working friend.”

PATTI SPODECK
Classroom Assistant,
Aftercare

Associate’s Degree
Computer Science

“What I love about Montessori is hard to summarize in a few words. It’s the witnessing of what I love to describe as the three L’s. Montessori environments are filled with moments of love, laughter and learning. Everyday I am in awe of the children’s love of learning a new lesson; laughter resonating as the children work collectively together on a group activity and love affectionately displayed comforting or assisting their fellow classmates. Life lessons learned for a promising future generation.”

KRIS SPENCE
Directress,
The Azalea Room and
Head of School

AMI Certification
Montessori Institute of Milwaukee
BBA, Human Resources Management
Eastern Michigan University

“My love of Montessori comes from the moments we witness on a daily basis with the children.  There is a sense of peace and calmness that the children exhibit when they have mastered something on their own.  We witness intense levels of concentration for a child of 3-6.  We watch them transform from 3 year olds just establishing their first steps toward independence and yearning for more who later transform into 6 year olds that are confident, mature, well-mannered, helpful, and ready to learn even more than what they have already mastered.  We are so fortunate to witness this tremendous growth.  It is a love of this environment and the children who come here, for me, that grows deeper each year that I am with them!”