Jose Navarijo

Alicia Cooper

Ms. Cooper began her journey in education over 25 years ago through volunteerism.  The process of learning and early development quickly became a passion and she obtained her BA in Early Childhood Education Program Administration.  Since then, she has served as a Teacher in multiple age groups as well as an Administrator.  Her career path has led her to work with Preschools and Elementary Schools, in the public, parochial, and private sectors.  Along her journey, she has built several pilot programs for non-profit organizations as well as client-based programs.  Ms. Cooper has additional experience in Regional Education Management and Educational Consulting with licensed programs.  She takes great pride in building communities and providing a quality experience for the children and families in the schools she serves.  In her spare time, Ms. Cooper enjoys the beach, spending time with loved ones, movies, culinary experiences,  and traveling.

Rodrigo Oliveros

Adrienne Pratt

Adrienne grew up in Fort Worth, Texas where she attended a public Montessori school from 2nd-5th grade.  She graduated from Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York with a Bachelor’s Degree in Cinema and Photography and moved to the Bay Area in 2003.  As an elementary student, Adrienne fell in love with Montessori principles and experienced first-hand the benefits of a Montessori education. It was this experience that led her to Montessori teacher-training.  She earned her American Montessori Society Primary Certificate from St. Mary’s College in 2008.  During her training, she interned at a Montessori school that was also a farm- complete with goats, chickens, horses, vegetable gardens, and fruit trees. She taught there for seven years, serving as the Lead Teacher and Director for the last four years. Adrienne stopped teaching full-time to have her first child. She is delighted to be a part of the GLM community as a staff member and parent. She enjoys spending time with her husband and sons exploring all that the area has to offer and is passionate about travel, reading, and photography.

Mary Aima

Mrs. Aima was born in St. Louis, Missouri and grew up in the small town of Webster Groves with her parents, four sisters and a brother. During her summers she and her family enjoyed traveling throughout the United States. She studied psychology while working at a deaf institute as a house mother for four years. She then traveled to Haiti to volunteer for three years at an orphanage, where she was the Activity Director. It was there that she met her husband and later they moved to California. She joined the GLM community in 1991 and has been working as one of our toddler teachers for the past twenty-nine years. During this time she has studied early childhood education and took administration classes to become a Site Supervisor. For twenty of those years she designed and sewed costumes for the GLM Performing Arts Camp, hosted by GLM every summer. She holds a AMI diploma from the Montessori Institute of the Northwest for the infant & toddler level. One of her favorite things about working with the toddlers is supporting them in their independence and watching them explore and discover things for the first time. She also values her role of supporting and collaborating with parents for the well-being of their children. Her daughter attended GLM through elementary. Outside of school she enjoys cooking, cake decorating, sewing and swimming.

Leta Koerber

Ms. Koerber was born in Seattle, Washington to the proud parents of Mary and Johnny Anderson of Hot Springs and Hope, Arkansas. She grew up in Monterey, California near the beach. In 1971 Leta’s family relocated to Berkeley, California where Leta enjoyed taking care of her three younger siblings. Leta graduated from Golden Gate Academy and moved to Riverside, California and attended Riverside Medical School; after a year she realized that this was not the direction she wanted to go. Leta graduated from Contra Costa Collage in San Pablo, California persuing a degree in Early Childhood Education. In 1989 Leta started searching for a job closer to home. She feels blessed to be a part of the Grand Lake Montessori community. After working in the afternoon program and assisting Ms. Campbell in the toddler classroom, she realized that furthering her education in Montessori would be a good idea. She started taking classes at Contra Costa College through Fountainhead Montessori School. Following, supporting, having fun, and being a true advocate for the child is what Leta believes helps children develop fully. She enjoys all types of music, singing, dancing outdoor adventures and being in the Juniper classroom, which keeps her young and her brain sharp.

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.

Ying Tien

Mrs. Tien was born in Vietnam and moved with her family to China. She came to the United States in January 2006. She did not speak any English upon her arrival, but began taking classes. She joined GLM in 2008 as a support teacher in the Mulberry classroom, where she is still teaching! She believes that working at GLM is a great place for her to better her English and learn Montessori philosophy: learning from the parents and community, learning from colleagues, and especially learning from the children. Children have taught her to open her mind and her heart to joy. Ms. Tien feels blessed to be a part of the GLM community, and she has completed Montessori Assistant training for both primary and toddler courses. Her goal is to help children become confident, independent learners and she believes learning should be fun. She enjoys shopping and cooking for her family in her spare time.  

Coreen Clark

Ms. Clark was born in Denver, Colorado and was raised on the east coast in Alabama and Maryland. She comes from a large, close-knit family and has more than a dozen nieces and nephews who sparked her love of children. She received her bachelor’s degree in sociology with a psychology minor from Brigham Young University in Utah, and she moved to the Bay Area in 2012. In San Francisco, she worked with elementary-aged children for over 3 years and gained experience with preschoolers at Friends of Potrero Hill Preschool. She came to Grand Lake Montessori after working as an Assistant Teacher in a primary-age classroom at LePort Montessori Preschool in Emeryville. Ms. Clark joined GLM in 2018 and finished her AMI Montessori Certification in 2021. She believes strongly in the Montessori philosophy of allowing children the freedom to explore and learn independently and at their own pace. Ms. Clark has a particular interest in art, stories, film, and geography. She also loves music and plays piano in her spare time.

Theresa Lin

Ms. Lin is originally from Kaohsiung, Taiwan. After graduating from college in Taiwan with a diploma in Nursing, she discovered Maria Montessori’s philosophy while babysitting for neighborhood children who attended a Montessori preschool. She decided to travel to the United States to pursue a Master’s degree in Montessori Education and received Early Childhood Teaching Credentials from the American Montessori Society (AMS) through Saint Mary’s College of California. She has been a Mandarin Montessori teacher in bilingual schools, in various classrooms from age two to twelve years old, in and around the East Bay for 12 years. She joined GLM in 2014. Her inspiration for teaching is that it’s like planting a little seed and nurturing it with peace and love, so that she can help make a more beautiful world. In her spare time she enjoys Zen meditation, cleaning, studying and eating nutritious food, also dining, shopping and traveling with friends.