Teacher Spotlight: Children's House

Monday, November 12, 2018

Meet the Teachers of Sandpiper and Heron

Natalie, Lori, Annabel, Norma


Norma Anthony: Lead Teacher of Heron

Norma was born and raised in Bolivia and moved to the United States in 1997. As a mother of two wonderful daughters, Norma realized how important the child’s early years were and the positive impact they can have on childhood growth. More specifically, the Montessori philosophy and approach to teaching and learning. Norma earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from the University of San Simón in Cochabama, Bolivia. She is AMS-certified at the Preschool and Kindergarten levels and has 14 years experience working with children. She has been part of the Bay Farm family since 2016 where is Lead Teacher of the Heron classroom.

5 Fun Facts You May Not Know About Norma
1. She was a model in the catalogue “Casa Fisher.”
2. She is the seventh child in her family.
3. She likes to illustrate fashion and clothes.
4. One of her favorite hobbies is to decorate her house.
5. She likes to hike and climb in her spare time as well.

Norma’s Favorite Thing About Working at Bay Farm:
“The children continue to inspire me to see the world through their eyes -- a world filled with hope, possibility, dreams, and potential.”  

Natalie Dickinson: Assistant Teacher of Heron

Natalie grew up in the Montessori environment, attending Inly from Kindergarten through Middle School.  She completed two years toward her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work at Simmons College, while working at Bay State Community Services as a Day Program Counselor for 7-12 year olds, followed by a Residential Counselor for adolescents involved in DCF and DMH. After realizing this was not the right career path for her, Natalie decided to become a Camp Counselor and a nanny to continue her passion of working with children. She is now Teacher Certified through DEEC, and is  excited to be in the Children’s House this year.

5 Fun Facts You May Not Know About Natalie:
1. She plays softball on a few different slow pitch leagues in the spring and summer and is trying out Wallyball this fall and winter! Wallyball is volleyball in a racketball court and you play off the walls.
2. She traveled around the US in a travel trailer the year before she started here at Bay Farm and she visited various National Parks and then went to Thailand.
3. She adopted her dog Luna while traveling in Washington.
4. Natalie is a big skier and snowboarder and travels to NH most weekends in the winter.
5. She is a pescatarian.

Natalie’s Favorite Thing About Working at Bay Farm:
“My favorite thing about Bay Farm is the sense of community and love of learning here!”

Lori Churchill: Lead Teacher of Sandpiper

Lori has been an educator since 1983. She received her Montessori Certification from New England Montessori Teacher Education Center in 1985. Lori has attended Quincy College, Bridgewater State College, and Fisher College and has extensive experience in Child Psychology, Behavior Management, Special Needs, and Early Childhood Development.

Lori has accomplished extensive studies on Hand Skill Development and Social Development specifically intended for young children. She is the Program Administrator and the DEEC Site Director, Lead Teacher in the Sandpiper classroom and the Level Coordinator for the Children’s House program where she mentors teachers.  She is a liaison between teachers and administration, and she collaborates with colleagues to construct a vibrant Montessori classroom and facilitates curriculum planning. She is married to her husband Rick, and they have three daughters, all of whom are Montessori alumni. Lori enjoys nature, astronomy, the ocean, boating, and riding her Harley Davidson.  She also has a black lab, Gemma, who accompanies her during daily walks.

5 Fun Facts You May Not Know About Lori:
1. Lori has three daughters, all of whom are Montessori alumni.
2. She enjoys nature, astronomy, the ocean, and boating.
3. When not at school, Lori loves riding her Harley Davidson motorcycle
4. She has a black lab named Gemma, who accompanies her during her daily walks.  
5. She began teaching at “Munchkin Montessori” before the school merged to become “Bay Farm Montessori Academy.”

Lori’s Favorite Thing About Working at Bay Farm:
“My favorite part about working at Bay Farm is working in the classroom; teaching life skills and helping children to adapt to the big world.  Bay Farm is a safe haven and as children encounter unfamiliar experiences, it is important to ensure children that they don’t have to tolerate inappropriate behavior.  Children will learn to use their voice to express themselves when needed. Teaching respect (for self, others and the environment) is a fundamental skill that will foster the child’s development to be a vital part of the community.”

Annabel Chase: Assistant Teacher of Sandpiper

As a child of a military family, Annabel spent the majority of her childhood traveling to foreign places. This sparked an immense interest in varying cultures and subsequently led to her decision to study cultural and social anthropology at the University of Rhode Island. After graduating, she became increasingly interested in nutrition and ultimately food production through farming. She spent several years with a non-profit managing livestock on a fifty acre farm. There she helped the education department develop programs designed to highlight the importance of small farms and the food they provide. This experience led her to become certified as a nutritional consultant with a focus on childhood well being. 

Annabel has been at Bay Farm since 2014 and has since become teacher certified. You will usually find her in the Sandpiper room of Children’s House or looking after the chickens and the garden on campus!

5 Fun Facts You May Not Know About Annabel:
1. She has lived in Japan, the Philippines, and Greece and also holds dual citizenship in the US and UK.
2. In her spare time when she am not shuttling her two daughters to and from soccer and horseback riding, Annabel enjoys riding her own horse, Beau, reading, cooking and painting.
3. Her first language was Tagalog (a Filipino dialect). 
4. She loves sushi!
5. She has delivered a calf by cesarean section!

Annabel’s Favorite Thing About Working at Bay Farm:
“I think one of the best things about Bay Farm is the community. It is a small, warm, enriching community that fosters a sense of well being at all stages of development.”