Director/ Lead Guide
With more than 30 years of experience with children, Jamie spent her first decade in the Montessori community as a Primary Guide, a full-time substitute, and an Assistant Administrator in both Portland and Los Angeles. She received her Primary Level AMI Degree at Montessori-Northwest (MNW) here in Portland in 2007. Through the years, Jamie has worked as a Children’s House Summer Guide and Full-time Substitute at Portland’s beloved Montessori school, Childpeace. Meeting Elizabeth and Carl van Warmerdam right here at HVM in the 2015, the seed was planted to step into a new role. Upon their retirement (and desire to be full-time grandparents!), Jamie developed a relationship with the van Warmerdams that would lead her to become the new owner and director of Happy Valley Montessori School in 2016. Jamie has been back in the classroom as the Lead Guide upon the start of the pandemic and is enjoying the daily life with the children in the cohort. In her spare time, Jamie loves all types of music, yoga, camping, roller skating, and chatting with friends and family (via zoom these days!).
Tanya graduated from high school in 2014 and attended Mt. Hood Community College for a few months before starting her role as a regular Substitute Assistant here at Happy Valley Montessori. Coming from a large family, Tanya loves the enthusiasm that children bring into everyday life. Enjoying time with children resulted in a dedicated practice of volunteering at her Bible class at church (youngest group: ages 3-5) for the last 10 years. With a keen interest in early childhood development, Tanya clearly recognizes how important the child’s first years are for their overall well-being and healthy growth. Since hearing about the Montessori method, Tanya had been looking for an opportunity to see and better understand how this particular way of teaching and interacting with children benefits and encourages their growth, joy of living, and discovering new things. Since joining the HVM Staff in 2016, Tanya has witnessed first-hand the tremendous and positive influence that the children experience daily through the Montessori method, especially in practical life skills. Tanya is thrilled and grateful for her role as the Lead Assistant to continue this important work while learning alongside the children. In her spare time, Tanya enjoys drinking tea, taking long evening walks, regularly attending and volunteering at her church, cooking, listening to music, and spending quality time with family and friends.
Jessica graduated from Concordia University in 2020 with a Bachelors in Elementary Education. Before joining the team in January, Jessica nannied for families working with children ages 6 months to 8 years old. Although Jessica is new to Montessori, she finds the method intriguing and is eager to continue exploring alongside students in our school. Jessica has always known she wanted to teach children in some capacity and is filled with gratitude that she is able to fulfill that desire through this amazing opportunity at Happy Valley Montessori. She enjoys engaging with students at a young age, helping to spark their love of learning, encouraging their growth socially, and seeing them begin to bloom in our classroom. When she is not at HVM, Jessica can be found playing board games, watching movies, playing volleyball, reading, rearranging all her furniture, spending time with family, and doing crafts.