Montessori Children’s House Staff
Montessori Children’s House is pleased to introduce the following staff for the 2017-2018 school year:
Megan Durkin – Director
With great joy, Megan opened Montessori Children’s House of Northfield in the fall of 2007—one hundred years after the first Casa dei Bambini was opened in Rome by Dr. Maria Montessori. She entered this new venture from a career of varied teaching experiences: working in her mother’s Montessori classroom as a girl, teaching kindergarten and first grade at the Taipei American School, teaching at a bilingual preschool in Taiwan, training teachers at Montessori schools in Hong Kong, and opening her own Montessori preschool in the village of Sai Kung in Hong Kong. She holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received her AMS Montessori Teaching Degree from New York University and Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Course in Chicago.
Megan, her husband Tom, and their three children have lived in Northfield since 1998. Locally, she taught for seven years at Prairie Creek Community School beginning with a pre-K classroom. In 2000 she also started teaching K-5 Spanish. The World Languages Program at Prairie Creek developed under her guidance to include Spanish, French, and Chinese with a strong emphasis on world cultures and peace education.
Apart from making the world a better and friendlier place, Megan’s goal is to bring her love of learning to her role as a teacher and to develop that lifelong passion in the students at Montessori Children’s House.
With the creation of the school on a beautiful two-acre site at the southern end of Northfield, came an opportunity to create a special place for children in nature. Megan hopes to grow this aspect of the school property to include students from nearby schools and all children from the community in an “Edible Schoolyard” program. When she is not in school she likes to garden, write and to dream about all the places left to visit on earth.
Shana Hodel – Classroom One, Extended Day
After spending the inaugural year of MCH as an Assistant Teacher in 2007, Shana received her Montessori Preprimary Teaching Certificate from the Montessori Teaching Academy at Indiana University South Bend in 2009. Shana has been a Montessori parent and enthusiastic follower of the Montessori Method for many years. She is now the Teacher for Classroom One and the Extended Day program, including music. Shana is an accomplished musician and piano accompanist for several youth programs in Northfield and beyond. She has been involved in numerous children’s arts programs at the NAG and with the Northfield Youth Choirs. Shana has an Interdisciplinary BA From Goshen College in Indiana with three areas of study: music with a specialty of piano pedagogy, sociology and ESL (teaching English as a second language). She also studied Chinese music and performance in Chengdu, China. In 2006 Shana and her family spent half of the year living in Germany and travelling throughout Europe. In the 2013-2014 school year Shana and her family led the St. Olaf College global study program in countries all around the world.
The children at MCH benefit greatly from Shana’s talents and her nurturing and fun loving enthusiasm. Her contributions as a Teacher on the MCH staff give us all something to sing about.
Patricia Rogne – Assistant, Classroom One, BSC
Pat has an extensive background in early childhood education teaching at Northfield Nursery School, Hand in Hand Preschool with the Northfield Public School District and ECFE. We are thrilled to have her join our team at Montessori Children’s House full time this year and are fortunate that she will be here to give our students a warm and wonderful experience. Pat has a BA in Elementary Education from Augustana College, Sioux Falls, SD and a Pre-primary Specialization from MN State University, Mankato. Pat completed the Montessori Assistant Training at MCM in St. Paul. She has been an early childhood educator working with young children for over thirty years. She raised her two children in Northfield and calls it home. We feel quite fortunate to have Pat at our school and continue to welcome her wisdom and gentle nature in guiding the children in her care.
Emma Kleese – Classroom Two
Emma is the Co- Teacher in Classroom Two with Carolyn this year and the art teacher for Extended Day. She has been working at MCH for eight years starting as a classroom volunteer during her senior year of high school. She completed the teacher training at the Montessori Teacher Academy in Indiana in 2016. Emma has also been our summer school teacher and most likely knows each child who has attended our school in any program. We are so lucky to have Emma here to work with the children in every capacity. Her gentle and helpful nature shines through in all she does. Our pride in her accomplishments continues to soar as she enriches the teaching staff at MCH every day.
Lindsey Boser – Assistant, Administration
We are so pleased to announce the permanent addition to our staff of Lindsey Gillis Boser. She and her family live in Northfield and we are fortunate have them in our school community. Lindsey has a degree in Elementary Education from Gustavus Adolphus and over ten years of experience in early childhood settings, from Montessori classrooms to Assistant Director at Como Early Learning Center, and as a teacher in the MCH summer program. We fell in love with Lindsey immediately at Montessori Children’s House and are excited about her new roles this year at our school.
Anngie Kleese – ASC
Anngie is our end of the day hero. She brings a gentle and nurturing nature to the After School Care program that rounds out some children’s experience at MCH. We couldn’t ask for a better friend to see them home each day.
Carolyn Regan – Classroom Two
We couldn’t be more pleased to announce that Carolyn Regan will be joining Montessori Children’s House in the summer of 2017. A longtime resident of Lakeville, Carolyn received her AMI Primary Training from the Montessori Training Center of Minnesota and Lower Elementary Diploma from NAMC. Carolyn has been working for twelve years as a Montessori guide and school director in Lakeville and in Prior Lake and has been in early childhood education for almost thirty years. She will be joining us, to start, as Co-Teacher in Classroom Two and as Academic Director. She will also be helping to lead the summer program starting in June. And yes, Carolyn is our dear Nicole’s (MCH teacher 2013-2015) mother. Needless to say, we are so excited! Carolyn is a perfect fit for MCH and brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our staff. Her commitment to Montessori and dedication to the child are inspiring. Our school will be incredibly enriched and strengthened by her presence. Some interesting things about Carolyn—she has two children and is wed to a former racecar driver. She loves mini coopers, like her daughter. Oh yes, and we’ve heard she has a wry sense of humor that reminds all around her not to worry too much about the small stuff. She feels that her joining MCH was really meant to be, and we couldn’t agree more.