Cristina Graham

Ms. Graham was born in Monterey Park, California and moved to the Central Valley as a young child. She had the pleasure of growing up there. Her grandfather owned a farm where she spent many days picking whatever fruit she wanted.  She moved to the Bay Area from Visalia in 1991 to attend St. Mary’s College where she received her B.A. in Liberal Studies in 1996 and her Montessori Certification in 1997. After the birth of her second son in 1999, she became a stay-at-home mom for nine years. She joined GLM in October of 2008.  She says it is a wonderful feeling to help share in the lives of tomorrow’s leaders. The child’s world view is beautiful and they remind her of what unconditional love truly is. Cristina has three sons, David (26), Langston (21), and Joaquin, (18) and two dogs, Lola and Buddy. She enjoys sewing, crafting, dancing, and relaxing in her backyard.

Nicole Jenkins

Ms. Jenkins was born and raised in Oakland, California. She is currently attending Merritt College where she is pursuing her educational goals in both Montessori training and early childhood development. She is most passionate about life, nature and the outdoors. With a combination of both her educational goals and her passions, she has been drawn to working with children while implementing the Montessori approach to teaching and learning. She believes that when teaching children, it is extremely important to build a relationship with the families, to help support the implementation of the Montessori philosophy in and outside of the home. She is very excited to experience her first year of teaching at Grand Lake Montessori.

Brittney Ward

Ms. Brittney Ward was born and raised in Oakland. She is the second oldest in her family, has four brothers and was raised by her loving and caring maternal grandparents. She is currently attending Diablo Valley College pursuing her educational goals in Early Childhood Development and Dental Assisting. Her interest in children began at the age of 9 when she had her own mini babysitting business watching over her younger brothers, cousins, and children of friends of the family. She was introduced to the Montessori philosophy and to GLM through working with a substitute teacher company. She believes that all children are unique and have something special that they can bring to their own education. She is excited to start her first year this fall of 2021 at Grand Lake Montessori. Her passions outside of school include spending time with her son and family, sports, baking, cooking, and graphic design.

Vincent LaRocca

Vincent LaRocca grew up in California between Los Angeles and Riverside. He moved to the Bay Area after graduating from high school. Vincent attended Merritt college in the Fall of 2018, where he took his courses in early childhood development and earned his Assistant Teacher certificate. His observations in early childhood education environments taught him that children are inherent learners, as they naturally explore their surroundings. Subsequently, he became enamored with the very curious nature and love that children have for learning. It was then he decided to begin his journey in the Montessori practice of child development. Vincent joined GLM in July, 2018. He is inspired by children’s potential and wants to be a model support for them on their journey of life. Vincent enjoys listening to music, stand up comedy, hiking and exploring the Bay Area, and finding new spots to eat delicious food.