Our teachers are a talented team of intelligent, warm, creative, and enthusiastic individuals. They are dedicated to creating nurturing environments where children are respected and supported as they develop independence, a sense of self, and a lifelong love of learning.
Our World Montessori maintains a strong commitment to the continuing education of our teachers. We encourage our staff to attend Montessori workshops and conferences and provide financial assistance for staff members to attend Montessori Training Programs. Our current staff have been trained by the Montessori education centers listed below:
- Center for Montessori Education-NY
- Northeast Montessori Institute
- North American Montessori Teacher’s Association
Staff members 2017-2018
- Diane Lanci — Head of School
- Diane holds a B.A. in Business Administration (Minor in Marketing) from St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN and an AMS Administrator credential from the Center for Montessori Education-New York. Diane was a Montessori-educated child and is parent of Cara and Nicholas, both of whom attended Woodland Hill Montessori School in North Greenbush, NY from the age of 3 through 8th grade.
- Dawn McMahon — Children’s House Head Teacher, Red Maple Classroom
- Dawn has a B.S. in Business Administration (Minor in Marketing) from Arizona State University in Tempe, AZ and completed her AMS Early Childhood Education training at the Center for Montessori Education-New York. She is currently completing her NYS Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education with an emphasis on Montessori education from the College of New Rochelle, NY. Her son, Spencer, attended Blossoms Montessori in Delmar, NY.
- Callen Dalton — Children’s House Head Teacher, White Oak Classroom
- Callen holds a double-major B.A. in English and History from SUNY-Albany and an AMS Early Childhood Education credential from Northeast Montessori Institute. Callen has also attended Infant/Toddler Advanced Assistant’s Training at Northeast Montessori Institute. This his sixth year working in a Montessori school.
- Larissa Pierre — Toddler Head Teacher, Willow Classroom
- Larissa has a B.S. in History from SUNY-Albany and is currently in training for her AMS Infant/Toddler credential at the Center for Montessori Education-New York. She has also attended Infant/Toddler Advanced Assistant’s Training at Northeast Montessori Institute.
- Katie Daugherty — Assistant Teacher, all classrooms
- Katie has a B.A. in Communications (Minor in Fashion Merchandising) from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY and has worked at Our World Montessori for 8 years.
- Maynel DeCotes — Teacher Assistant, Red Maple Classroom
- Maynel has completed the Montessori Advanced Assistant’s training at Northeast Montessori Institute. Before joining the Our World team, Maynel was a Teacher Assistant in the Guilderland Central School District for 16 years.
- Laura Frontera Santiago — Assistant Teacher, Willow Classroom
- Laura has a B.S. in Elementary Education (minor in Special Education) from the University of Puerto Rico. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Speech and Language Pathology from the University of Puerto Rico. She has attended Infant/Toddler Advanced Assistant’s Training at Northeast Montessori Institute. Her children, Amanda and Jay, attended Montessori schools, and Jay is a current student at Our World Montessori.
- Christine Sell — Teacher Assistant, White Oak Classroom
- Christine completed the Montessori Advanced Assistant’s training at Northeast Montessori Institute and the Introduction to Montessori Early Childhood Education at the Center for Montessori Education-NY. She holds Teacher Assistant certification from Schenectady County Community College in Schenectady, NY. Prior to joining us at Our World, Christine worked in another Montessori school. She also was a Museum Teacher at the Scotia-Glenville Children’s Museum where she continues to volunteer her time.
- Misty Van der Veer — Assistant Teacher, Willow Classroom
- Misty has a B.A. in Graphic Design from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She also runs a successful home business designing exquisite invitations.
- Morgan Marx — Assistant Teacher, all classrooms
- Morgan holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies, with emphases in Anthropology and English from the University of Alaska Southeast in Juneau, Alaska. She is currently working on her Master’s Degree in Anthropology with an emphasis in Archaeology. She has attended Infant/Toddler Advanced Assistant’s Training at Northeast Montessori Institute.
- Morgan Peters — Teacher Assistant, all classrooms
- Morgan is currently a senior at Union College studying for a B.A. in History and Russian and Eastern European Studies.
- Michele Tibbitts-Esposito — Yoga Teacher, Teacher Assistant
- Dawn Tonneau — Kindermusik Teacher
Our World Montessori is an AMS Full Member School.