Rosebud Preschool Teacher
I’ve had the privilege of growing up here in beautiful Mendocino County. When I was young, my older brother had the pleasure of attending WSMC for a brief time. I still remember the smell of lavender and beeswax, and the feelings of love, and warmth. I was not so lucky and went to public school here in the Ukiah Valley. I knew before I even had my own child I wanted him to go to this school. I began working at WSMC in 2008, as a specialty teacher and aftercare coordinator. I had studied and planned to open an in-home childcare program in Redwood Valley, however the universe had something else in store. Over the years, I have been lucky enough to be the aftercare coordinator, to teach games, movement, clay sculpture, beeswax, creative play and rest & story. I have assisted in the kindergarten and nursery classrooms, as well as leading Rosebud and plenty of subbing over the many years. Last year I completed my Waldorf teacher training for Early Childhood at The West Coast Institute for anthroposophy in British Colombia. It was an amazing program and experience that further inspired my deep love for my work as a Waldorf teacher. In my free time, I enjoy going on adventures with family, discovering new things, organic gardening, making art, cooking and baking, connecting with friends, family and nature, as well as learning new things and continuing my studies.
JULIA ANN FERREIRA
Primrose Preschool and Roots & Shoots Teacher
I am delighted to be joining WMSC faculty as Primrose preschool and Roots and Shoots teacher. I was first introduced to Waldorf education through gardening, and as soon as I stepped foot inside my first Waldorf Kindergarten I knew I was at home. I have had the distinct pleasure of being a lead teacher at charter and Independent Waldorf schools in Arizona, Tennessee and California teaching a combined grades class, three years of Kindergarten, as well movement/cooperative games, gardening and leading aftercare programs.
Over the years I have been in and out of teaching exploring - the healing arts (Reiki and Energy Medicine) and studying outdoor education - and I always seem to find my way back to the Waldorf classroom, such that I know I'm here to stay. I absolutely love what Waldorf education gives children and think it is unequivocally a gift to all who experience it.
Born and raised in Perth Amboy, NJ, I am first generation Portuguese-American and a Portuguese dual citizen. It's such a delight to be in Mendocino County where I'm fulfilling a long held dream of rural living at Ridgewood Ranch!
I have a BA in Sociology/Anthropology from a small midwestern school (Earlham College), and have studied Waldorf education at Rudolf Steiner College and Sunbridge Institute. When I'm not with children, I'm off somewhere dancing, singing, drawing, picking flowers, or hiking.
Red Rose Kindergarten Teacher
I grew up in Mendocino County. After obtaining a BA in Liberal Studies at California State University, Chico, I followed my dream of teaching children by obtaining a California State Teaching Credential in 2005. The magic and brilliance of Waldorf Education was first introduced to me when I was a student in a Waldorf Kindergarten. After teaching in various preschools in California, Arizona, and Oregon, I made my way back home to The Waldorf School of Mendocino County (WSMC). In 2007, I began teaching at WSMC as a kindergarten teacher while simultaneously completing my Waldorf teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, California. After taking six years away from WSMC to be at home with my two young daughters, I rejoined the WSMC Faculty in 2015 and have had the pleasure of teaching my small friends in the Early Childhood Program.
White Rose Kindergarten Teacher
I have been teaching at WSMC for sixteen years, and I was an assistant even before that time. I began my Waldorf journey when my young daughter was beginning kindergarten. We went to visit the school and immediately fell in love with it, not knowing anything about Waldorf Education. As you can imagine, it has been quite a journey for me and is always continuing to be so. The job and my life are intertwined, and I dearly believe that this is the best education for children. It's not an easy path to become a Waldorf teacher, or parent; I know I am always striving to do better.
There are so many favorite days in kindergarten, that I could not name just one. I thoroughly love any time the children are experiencing the beautiful world of nature or a magical moment when their imagination carries them into building a spaceship or a fairy house, to the excitement when they bring me a flower, or a worm, or a stone, and are so filled with wonder at their discovery. After they leave kindergarten, they might remember the day they got to make their own pizza, or the puppet show they performed before leaving the kindergarten to go on to first grade. Personally, I enjoy being in nature, swimming, and hiking. I like working in my garden and canning the summer bounty when I have time. I have a wonderful family to share life with, and I am very fulfilled and appreciate my good fortune.
Grade 1 & 2 Teacher
I started working with children in Early Childhood Education when I was a high schooler in Richmond, Virginia. Within months of declaring my major, I was the recipient of the Excellence In Early Childhood Award at Warren Wilson College in Asheville, North Carolina. Just prior to receiving my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education, I learned about Waldorf Education in a chance encounter with a Waldorf alumni. A requirement for graduating from Warren Wilson is the completion of 100 hours of community service. This instilled in me a deep love of service, and right after graduating, I began a year-long service as an Americorps member in Ukiah, California at FIRST5 Mendocino. When my year of service was completed, a position as Debra McCarthy’s assistant in Red Rose Kindergarten at the Waldorf School of Mendocino County became available. The first year I worked in Red Rose, I was also the Aftercare Provider for the Grades; the following year, I became the First Grade Teacher. After my class finished fourth grade, I worked within the Waldorf movement as the Enrollment Coordinator at Yuba River Charter School in Nevada City, and taught first grade at a Waldorf-methods school in Shenandoah, Virginia. I was delighted to return to WSMC last school year as the Red Rose Assistant and Grades Specialty Teacher. Now I am overjoyed to be teaching again at WSMC as the First Grade Teacher for the 2020-2021 school year. Since coming to WSMC in 2010, I was and still am an avid roller skater; when not at school, I am at a skatepark. I have a strong love of plants, stories, culture, and am passionate about social justice. I am currently completing my Waldorf teacher training at the West Coast Institute.
Grade 3 & 4 Teacher
I am so excited about joining your school community as the new class 3/4 teacher. I am deeply moved by the warm welcome I have received by the staff, the families and the children here at WSMC. I realize we are in a time of change as our lives are requiring great flexibility and resilience. I feel, this school community is approaching these ever changing social needs with incredibly grace and that together our children will be well prepared to meet the challenges of the future due to our shining examples as adults during this time.
As an educator, I have been assisting and teaching in various schools, primarily k-4 for the past 16 years, primarily in Sonoma County, Ca. I graduated from the Center for Educational Renewal at Summerfield Waldorf School and Farm in Santa Rosa in 2011. Upon graduating and deeply inspired by my new Waldorf education, I went abroad in search of an amazing school for both myself and my then 8 year old daughter. In the end our schools here in Northern California are the best and we decided to stay. Since then, I found a growing need in our community for private tutoring and have focused most of my attention on curative education and support teaching in schools with large classes. I really enjoy private tutoring and since Covid began I have been a private 3/4 class teacher with a small pod in Sebastopol.
I have always loved the Mendocino Waldorf campus and was touched by the warm and kindness of the teachers and administration. I am looking forward to meeting all of you and building a relationship with you, your children and this school community in the years to come.
Grade 5 & 6 Teacher
It sometimes takes a seasoned tracker to find the start of a trace. How did I find my way to Waldorf education? Was it the long ago mention of the Steiner school just down the road from where I lived in Germany as an exchange student—“Oh, you have to sign your children up even before they are born!” Or was it years later crisscrossing Sonoma County as a bike tour guide with a fellow guide, whose parents were both Waldorf teachers—“I helped make that sign at the entrance!” Regardless, it was with the birth of my two sons that the path was clear beneath my feet. It brought the need and desire to serve them as best I could in their development as whole human beings (a work that is still in progress no matter how time marches on).
I have since embraced the philosophy of Steiner and taken on the work of understanding its relation to child development. I home-schooled my sons using the Waldorf curriculum and worked with groups of home-schooled children to bring the curriculum to them. To strengthen my understanding, I completed the teacher training program at the Center of Educational Renewal in Santa Rosa as well as a semester long study at the Goetheanum in Switzerland. Before then I earned my Bachelor's Degree in Languages and Literature at Bard College, lived in Hungary and Indonesia, worked as an archaeologist for California State Parks, biked cross country, sang German songs with my Dad as he played accordion, and learned to knit from my expert mother. Within all these things are the stories that make us human and my wish is for students to seek their own stories through boundless curiosity and a freedom of thinking.
Grade 7 & 8 Teacher
When I began looking deeply at Waldorf classrooms as a place for my daughter, I realized it was where I belonged as well. I have a background in Theater that includes performing and teaching at all levels, from Kindergarten through Junior College. My interest in the mystery of being human lead me to become a Licensed Acupuncturist. I bring my experience as an actor, a director, a teacher, and a healer to my teaching. I was drawn to theater and Chinese Medicine because they encompass the whole human being: the physical, the emotional, the communal, and the spiritual aspects. As a Waldorf Teacher, I get to bring my love for the human being and all her potential to the classroom everyday. I live with my husband John, daughter Sage, dog Biscuit and two cats Muzby and Romeo. In my personal life, I enjoy spending time in nature, camping, swimming in the river, and playing with my family and our pets.