Bansari Modi, Administrator
Bansari Modi was born in India into a family of educators who instilled in her a love of learning and nurturing. She started helping out children by tutoring in the school where her grandmother was head of the school. She came to USA in early 90's as a Physical Therapist and cherished educating and helping the community working with children & adults. She continued to foster her love of education by volunteering with North South Foundation helping raise money to help under privileged children in India, attend college by organizing Spelling, Math, Science and Geography Bee workshops and competitions in USA.
Bansari joined Flossmoor Montessori School in January 2014 to promote Montessori way of learning in children. She takes special interest to witness the children’s great accomplishments as they develop in Montessori environment with dynamic blend of freedom and responsibility. She believes that most precious gift for children is the opportunity to reach their fullest potential by fostering an environment prepared to meet their learning needs.
She is married and has a son. She enjoys cooking, reading, sailing, travelling, learning about different countries and culture, spending time with family and nature.
Emily Pinto, Program Director
Ms. Emily Pinto is a graduate of Governors State University with a Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education. She has over 5 years working with children from birth to age 11-years. Although new to Montessori, she brings an extensive knowledge of child development and background of implementing developmentally appropriate practices in the classroom.
Outside of work, Ms. Emily is a Homewood-Flossmoor local who spends time with her husband and two children. In the summer she enjoys frequenting the Homewood Farmer’s Market and other local events as well as the Lake Michigan beaches in Indiana. She has a great passion for working with children and inspiring them to do their best both in school and outside of school, and hopes she can make a lasting, positive impact on the lives of students and their families in the Homewood-Flossmoor community.
Leticia Banda, Pre-Primary Guide and Assistant Program Director
Ms. Leticia has worked in the early childhood field for 13 years. She began her journey as a teacher assistant at a Chicago child development center working with all ages from zero to six. During this time, she also had an opportunity to work with Early Intervention providing translation services for Spanish speaking families and assisting in developmental and speech therapy sessions for children under three.
A few years later, she stumbled upon an opportunity to work at a Montessori school closer to home. With little knowledge of the Montessori philosophy, she was blown away by the abilities of the children, the beauty and structure of the environment, as well as the respect the adults had for the children. Immediately, she knew this was the type of learning environment she wanted to be in. For the first two years she assisted in a primary classroom, taking in all the knowledge she could from the veteran teacher and putting it into practice. As someone who is always wanting to know more and learn, she decided it was time to go back to school. In 2013, she enrolled at Seton Montessori Institute and completed the Infant-Toddler Montessori Teacher Training Course. Prior to this she had also attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, majoring in finance. Later in life, also took professional development courses at Morton College for continued Early Childhood Development Learning. Since then, she has been a Pre-primary Lead Teacher for almost 9 years. She has also had the opportunity to work as an Infant/Toddler Program Coordinator and Assistant Director. Through the years she has learned so much from students, families, and fellow teachers. Her passion is being in the classroom, preparing a space for the children and watching them grow independently and confidently in their capacities.
Lisa Green, Young Toddler Guide
Ms. Lisa has worked ten years with the Chicago Public School, high school division as a Teacher Assistant. She received her Paraprofessional License in Education. She has worked with the Middle School division focusing on children with special needs.
Ms. Lisa's love for working with children has allowed her to assist the children to overcome their educational struggles. Currently she is working on completing Montessori certification in the Young Toddlers program at Seton Montessori.
Haritha Nayani, Primary Guide
Ms. Haritha was born in the southern part of India into an agriculture-based family. At a young age she understood her path and chose to be a teacher and started her career as a Pre-Primary teacher. To add on to her passion of working with children, as one of the lifetime opportunities Ms. Haritha came across MONTESSORI Methodology. As a traditional school teacher, she understood the challenges of children and how at times teachers would need extra tools to help children more than the regular books. When she came across Montessori Philosophy, it was very inquisitive and enthusiastic for her to understand the methodology and the material used in the philosophy and the classroom. She enrolled herself into an 18-month AMI Primary Montessori Training Program in the year 2006. This 18 months Primary training, as she refers to "Has transformed my inner self and outlook to the world and the CHILD".
Ms. Haritha strongly believes that the Montessori Method of education is not just for children, it's a way of life. As a certified AMI guide, she offered her services as a lead AMI guide in 2 Montessori House of Children in India for 11 memorable years. Later to enhance her understanding of "the Universal Child”, she moved to Morocco and worked as a Primary Montessori Guide, for 4 years. With her unforgettable experience of working in Morocco, she wanted to continue her exploration. She chose to join FMS Family in the year 2023 and this is her first year in the United States of America. And her exploration continues......
Other than teaching Ms. Haritha is a trained Zentangle artist, pursues it as a passion and promotes it commercially. She is a trained Classical Bharatanatyam Dancer (one of the Indian Classical Dance forms) and singer.
Ms. Haritha aspires to create a self-sufficient Montessori space for the underprivileged, which is supported by people with different abilities.
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Angelina Tamez, Primary Assistant Teacher
Ms. Angelina’s teaching experience spans over a couple of decades working in multiple environments around the country. She has taught infants to 8th grade with an emphasis on preschool and children with special needs.
She is also a professional artist and licenses her work commercially for online sale. She is an avid book reader, sci-fi nerd, animal, and music lover.
One of her favorite things about being a teacher is seeing the world through the eyes of children. Everything is worth exploring, she enjoys the process of evaluating the world and exploring the answers to questions. She feels privileged to promote the scientific process of discovery. It’s a beautiful thing to be a part of and witness.
Ms. Angelina is excited to be a part of FMS and looking forward to bringing many years of her teaching experience into the classroom.
Marcelle Nichan Rizk, Primary Guide
Ms. Marcelle is an educator with an extensive background in early childhood education, spanning over 27 years. Her journey in the field reflects her unwavering dedication to the well-being and development of young minds.
Ms. Marcelle's transition into preschool education marked a significant step in her career. As a team leader, she honed her teaching skills and demonstrated her ability to guide and inspire her colleagues. Her leadership qualities and commitment to fostering a positive and stimulating learning environment for children became evident.
However, her fortuitous encounter with Montessori education in Australia truly transformed her teaching philosophy. Enrolling in a Montessori teacher training program, Ms. Marcelle embraced the Montessori approach, known for its child-centered, individualized, and hands-on learning methods. Over 14 years in Montessori education, she continued to excel, taking on the roles of both team leader and mentor to help other educators embrace the Montessori philosophy. Her love for children and her desire to see them thrive led her to become a guiding force for the next generation of Montessori teachers.
Ms. Marcelle's quest for knowledge and her passion for understanding how children think and learn led her to pursue a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education. This decision showcased her dedication to challenge herself and advance in her career continually.
Today, Ms. Marcelle is privileged as part of the dedicated team at Flossmoor Montessori School in Illinois. It is a testament to her commitment to providing the best possible learning environment for the children under her care.
Email address: email@example.com
Shannon Pelote, Primary Assistant Teacher
Ms.Christina - Pre-Primary Classroom Assistant
Ms. Ann- Kitchen & Classroom Assistant
Mrs. Diane Adamore-Johnson - Classroom Assistant