“Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make him learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within him that light which is called intelligence.”
– Maria Montessori

a little about..

SMALL WORLD STAFF

The teachers, assistants and board members of Small World Montessori School are truly a part of something special. It is a community of loving, hard-working individuals who believe in the benefits of educating, enriching and guiding children as they grow up into the BIG world.
Contact us today to schedule a tour!

Lori Geisler

Lori Geisler

Administrator

I began my journey at Small World twenty years ago as a parent. From the moment I came into Small World I loved the peaceful, academically enriched environment. As I watched my son flourish in his first classroom experience, I wanted to become more involved. The next year I joined parent board. Years later, when my daughter joined the Small World family, I decided to pursue my Montessori certification and become the lead teacher in the Willow classroom. After nearly 10 years of teaching, I became the administrator of Small World. I feel that I now am able to utilize all of my experience as a parent, board member, and teacher. This latest opportunity allows me to continue my work in making Small World Montessori the best it can be for the children of our community.

Lisa Harris

Lisa Harris

Administrative Coordinator -Lead Guide- Preschool - K5

After graduating from the UW – Madison, my career path led me to managing in Toys 'R' Us stores for six years. It is there my love for children began. After having my first child, I embraced my new role as a stay at home mom. When my child turned three, I visited numerous preschools and the academic, peaceful, and busy Montessori classroom was the best fit for my daughter. Soon after joining the Small World community, the teachers that were there for 26 years had decided to retire. I, along with my sister-in-law, Lori Geisler, applied for the jobs and have now been teaching for well over a decade. Along with being a mother and wife, this has been one of the most rewarding experiences.

Amy Paulson

Amy Paulson

Lead Guide - Preschool - K5

I come to Small World Montessori School with over 20 years of early childhood experience. I found out about Maria Montessori late in my education at UW-Parkside and began reading more about her methods and observing in Montessori schools early in my career. I believe in the power of the Montessori method to help a child reach their full potential. Over the years I have tried to incorporate as much of those methods as I could in other child care settings so I am thrilled to be working in a true Montessori school. In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my husband and daughter. We especially enjoy biking, kayaking and camping.



Mikayla Glover

Mikayla Glover

Assistant Guide - Preschool -K 5

When I was a child, I went to Small World for preschool. I have amazing memories of my experiences at this school that have stuck with me and shaped me into who I am today. So I can personally attest to the effectiveness of the Montessori method, and I believe these experiences have pushed me to have a passion for education. I am now on track to graduate with my associate's degree in early childhood education from Gateway, and then I will be moving on to get my bachelor's at UW Parkside. My main goal for the children I work with is to help them develop a love of learning. The thing I value most about preschool-aged children is their curiosity; they want to know about everything. So I plan to do everything I can to encourage them to continue to explore the world around them with enthusiasm throughout their lives.

Beth Wendt

Beth Wendt

Assistant Toddler Guide

I have lived in Racine for my entire life. I am one of nine children and I believe the love and fun I had as a child made me want to have a large family myself. After marrying my high school sweetheart we had five children that I was fortunate enough to stay home and homeschool through high school. I've had a few positions since my youngest graduated, but I truly feel that being apart of educating children is what fits my soul. My past time pleasures are spending time with my husband, children, and grandchildren.

Julie Konen

Julie Konen

Lead Toddler Guide

Though I always knew I had a desire to work in education, it wasn’t until I began working in childcare following the birth of my son that I found my passion for early childhood. It wasn’t too long after that when I became intrigued by the Montessori approach to life and learning. I was very excited to join the Small World community, and have been incredibly inspired by the peaceful, homelike environment and the engaging and logical Montessori curriculum. I will be returning to school in the fall to complete my bachelors degree in education, with hopes of one day having my own classroom. Outside of the classroom, I love being with my family, visiting new places, and reading.

Shannon Brady

Shannon Brady

Shannon Brady

Lead Enrichment Teacher

While searching for an at-home curriculum, I came across Maria Montessori's theories, which truly resonated with our families lifestyle. In 2019, we happily introduced "work" aligning with our values and found that with the help of socializing part-time at Small World Montessori School, our child was quickly thriving and enjoying the community. Fast-forward to today, my soul has led our family back to SWM with a desire to help children be the best version of themselves. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and I am happy to contribute my experiences as a stay-at-home-mom, a professional in the business sector, as well as lots of love for children, to the classrooms. "Speak to your children as if they are the Wisest, Kindest, most Beautiful and Magical humans on earth, for what they believe is what they'll become." - Brooke Hampton

Jennifer Cruz

Jennifer Cruz

Lead Toddler Guide

Throughout my undergrad, I worked in childcare. That is when I discovered my passion for working with children. I pursued a degree in social work with an emphasis in child welfare although, after receiving my degree I decided to continue to work with children in an educational setting. During the process of pursuing a career, I came across an opportunity to grow and develop new skills within the Montessori curriculum. I was not familiar with the curriculum although after conducting research I was intrigued with the opportunities that it provided for the students. I look forward to beginning my journey at Small World Montessori as I developed new skills and knowledge, while also providing each child with a safe and supportive environment to reach their full potential. Lastly, during my free time I enjoy playing softball and spending time with friends and family.

Kylie Vanderhoef

Kylie Vanderhoef

Enrichment Teacher

I have always wanted to work with children. While in high school I began my path towards teaching by taking classes in early childhood education. As an adult, the experience I have gained working with my own daughter and family continues to help me at Small World. While the Montessori approach was new to me when I began at Small World, I am already able to see its benefits. I love how the children are given so much choice in what they do each day. In my spare time I like to spend time with my daughter, go camping, bike, and craft.

Angie Molina

Angie Molina

Assistant Guide - Preschool - K4

I have always had a passion for working with young children and have 20+ years of experience in the early education field, primarily with preschool aged children. I've worked as a classroom assistant, lead teacher, assistant director, director, ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) therapist, and business owner. I am a certified yoga teacher and certified SEL (Social Emotional Learning) and Wellness facilitator. I am in love with the Montessori method of learning and take joy in guiding young children along in their education experience. When I'm not busy teaching, I enjoy spending time with my husband and five children. As animal lovers, we also have a dog, a cat, and five chickens to care for!

Jennifer Matson

Jennifer Matson

Enrichment Teacher

I have been working with children for over 14 years. I have always loved watching children grow and seeing their individual personalities develop. I feel that it is essential to build relationships with the families as much as the students. I have met so many wonderful people throughout my career! I am enjoying my experience working with the Montessori method at Small World and look forward to continuing to grow in my knowledge and experience. I have been so impressed with the independence of our Montessori students. In my spare time I love to make diamond paintings, taking walks, and playing video games with my family.