Escuela Viva Executive Director & Owner
Since July 2014
Angie Garcia, the founder of Escuela Viva, first and foremost is a mom to two beautiful children. Escuela Viva began when Angie could not find the type of preschool experience that she wanted for her daughter. Angie, having had many years experience in both early childhood programs like Head Start as well as experience in child care settings, felt she had a good grasp of what makes a solid nurturing preschool. July 2004, Escuela Viva opened its’ doors for the first time in her remodeled basement. Before her first child was born (2002), Angie graduated from PSU with a Bachelor of Arts in 1995 and in 1997 graduated from PSU’s Master’s of Social Work program. Angie has many years experience working with families on a number of levels from child abuse prevention, domestic violence and child welfare. Now with Escuela Viva strong and vibrant, Angie can devote her time to the school and being a mom to her daughter, Mayah and her son, Eddie.
Laralei Vander Putten-Kane
Pine Street Site Director
Since December 2005
Over 14 years of experience working with young children.
Continuous education and trainings with the following:
Mother of two (Oliver 18 and Logan 15 as of 2019)
Portland Community College
Mount Hood Community College (MCC&R)
Professional Development Escuela Viva
Laralei grew up in Colorado. Wanting a little more exploration of the country, she also ended up living in Hawaii, California, Florida, and Georgia. She eventually landed in Oregon in 1993 and knew she had found her “forever” home. She had long been working in the hospitality industry, but after having her two children, she realized that creating more quality time in their world would not only benefit them, but her as well.
Laralei has been with the Escuela Viva family almost since its inception. First as a parent, then a volunteer, and finally as a teacher. Her experience in all aspects of the school has given her a great opportunity to experience all the ins and outs of being a creative part of a loving community. Both her children, son Oliver and daughter Logan, began their preschool experience back in 2004 with Escuela Viva and have both graduated into outside grade school programs. Laralei continues to educate herself, her family and the community with the great team at Escuela Viva. She now enjoys her current role as the administrative assistant, and as an auxiliary support to the teachers, and children. She lives in the North Portland Cathedral Park area (almost 20 years) where she shares a home with husband Kevin, her children and their many small creatures. She likes to adventure around town, visit family and friends, dance, eat, and play. She enjoys every minute..rain or shine.
Maestras de los Pumas
Kathleen Nani Nauta
Since August 2014
Nani is excited to be joining the Escuela Viva family. She has an A.A degree in Early Childhood Education and has been a preschool teacher for over 23 years. In 2007, she left Mentor Graphic Child Development Center after 13 years to return to school. In 2008, she received her B.S. in Social Science. Her emphasis was on ECE and Environment studies with young children. Nani has been involved with OAEYC (Oregon Association for the Education of Young Children) for over 20 years.
Nani is also a mom and a widow. Her daughter Kelsey is 23 and is currently in China teaching English to kindergarteners. Her son Ryan is 32 and has provided Nani with 2 lovely grandchildren. Currently she lives in Lake Oswego with a big dog and two cats. In her spare time she enjoys traveling, gardening, photography, reading and watching movies.Some of the things she loves teaching children include, respect for the environment, diversity, music appreciation and sign language.
Nani looks forward to being a part of your child and family’s journey. She believes that together we can plant powerful seeds of wisdom, knowledge and compassion in children’s minds.
Maria Gloria Luna
Pre-K Spanish Teacher
Since June 2016
Gloria Luna was born in Mexico. She graduated from college in Mexico with a degree in business. She came to Oregon in 2002 and moved to Portland in 2003. She is the mom of two daughters: Ivette, 14, and Emily, 6 years old.
She ran an in-home childcare for 7 years and taught Spanish and arts and crafts. She loves when children feel happy and enjoy life. She loves being with children because they are full of energy and their imaginations are huge. She has volunteered in different elementary schools like Rosa Parks and M L C.
She worked at the Clarendon Early Learning Center where she helped organize kindergarten readiness activities for caregivers in North Portland. Her goal is to return to college and get a Master’s in Teaching. She is very passionate in her work and she doesn’t like to leave things half way done.
She loves to play and explore the new possibilities of happiness with her daughters. She enjoys exercise, music, dance, exploring and the beach. She started to work at Escuela Viva because she knows she can give a lot and it’s her next step to success and she knows she can make it happen.
Maestras de los Angelitos
Since August 2016
Carmen Figueroa was born on April 18th, 1990 in the city of Camaguey, Cuba. Since her earlier years of life she reflected an aptitude towards excellence and responsibility which was evident by her determination to follow her dreams despite the restrictions of her countries. She learned about her passion at an early age when she had to take care of her younger twin brothers because her parents were working professionals. In other words, she became the babysitter of the family.
In 2014 Carmen successfully graduated with an accounting degree from Candido Gonzalez Vocational School in her hometown. While she was simultaneously finishing her degree and completing her accounting internship at Villa Azucar, Carmen explored her dream of becoming a teacher by seeking an opportunity to work at Manuel Sabalo Child Day Care Center. Right after being accepted she completed 2 years of working experience in this school.
After several months of striving to arrive to the dreamed land of United States going through difficulties, she enrolled in Mount Hood Community College to pursue a Child Care Teaching certificate. Now she is grateful to be part of Escuela Viva where every children individuality is celebrated.
Virginia “Vicky” Velarde
Preschool Spanish Teacher
Since April 2016
She arrived in Portland two years ago with her daughter Gloria and husband John.
Virginia was first turned on to child care when she volunteered at her daughter’ s daycare. She found that she loved to spend time with children. She has now been working with children for the last eight years in different classrooms and at different centers.
Virginia likes to cook Mexican food, read books for professional development purposes (how best to support children) and exercise. She enjoys Zumba, Yoga and hikes. She is excited to be working at Escuela Viva because she feels at home here.
Preschool TA & Floater Teacher (all school)
Since July 2016
Having a natural interest in art, after high school I pursued a degree in textiles in which I was able to learn about design, texture, dyeing, materials, chemistry and other aspects. My husband and I met while I worked in an office, as an administrative assistant. My first time in the United States occurred during the years when my husband was studying for his PhD at Cornell University. Our first son, Ehsan, was born while we lived in Ithaca, New York, over 35 years ago.
In 2008, I returned to the United States to join my oldest son to further my education. Because I had previous English language classes and experience with speaking, I started out in ENL classes until I completed them and then chose a curriculum to pursue. Raising my own three boys, Ehsan, Amin, and Erfan, was a highlight of my life. Now that my sons are well into adulthood, I still enjoy young children and want to spend time with them. For this reason, I chose early childhood education as my major. During that time, I participated in a Head Start program with infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. I worked hard in my studies and persevered to graduate this spring with my AAS degree in ECE from Mt. Hood Community College.
I am bilingual as I speak both English and Persian and understand the challenges of learning a second language. Because of my background, my interests include the Persian culture. Persian food is my specialty and I will happily share culinary dishes with friends and family who care to join us for a meal.
In my spare time, I enjoy working on sewing projects, nursing houseplants, creating a garden, taking Zumba lessons, yoga exercises, dancing, developing new recipes, singing, reading, hiking, and bicycling. Staying active and interactive is a part of my very being. I truly enjoy new experiences and meeting new people. I value people who come from different cultures and know there is so much we can learn from each other.
Finally, I would like to express how much I appreciate working with young children who are constantly learning and expressing curiosity about their environment. Children need to be given the opportunity to explore the world around them by using all five senses. Each child is unique and will grow at his or her own pace. An age is not always a precise measure of the child’s abilities. Children will express their uniqueness in different ways. They are the foundation for each and every culture. Nurturing them is my delight. I look forward to many years of spending time with them and learning from them, too.
Las Maestras de los Tortuguitas
Toddler Teacher (Tortuguitas Class)
Since April 2014
Eloisa was born and raised in Mexico, City. She has lived in Oregon since she arrived from her country in 1993 and feels happy that she has learned the English language and has learned to be part of a bicultural environment and is eager to transmit the value of cultural diversity to young children.
Eloisa has three children, her oldest son Ivan and two lovely girls named Adriana and Stephanie. She realized that she wanted to work in the field of Early Childhood when she was volunteering at her son’s preschool. She then decided to take ECE classes to acquire the knowledge that would allow her to better support the learning and development of children.
In the past, Eloisa has worked with preschool age children in programs at Head Start and she recently started to work for Escuela Viva after earning her (AAS) in Early Childhood Education from Mt. Hood Community College. She believes that each child grows at their own developmental level and each child comes from a family that has their own beliefs and values. That is why she respects the unique qualities of each child in the context of their family and culture.
In the future, Eloisa plans to continue with her education and her next goal is to obtain a BA in Early childhood Education. She enjoys being a mother, she dedicates her free time to her children and together they enjoy hiking, reading and exploring new places among other fun activities, her goal is to enjoy life and spend quality time with her family.
Toddler Teacher (Tortuguitas Class)
Since November 2017
Ailin Martinez was born in Cuba, finished high school and began preuniversity. In 2009 she obtained her accounting diploma, she moved to the United States in 2014, she is the mother of three children, two boys with 15 and 16 years old and a girl of 8. She is a great mother, full of values which is reflected in the education she has given to her children, her greatest desire is to excel in this country and her first step is to study English in Mount Hood community college, where she is studying level D ESL, in addition to participating in the transitions program at the same school, my greatest wishes are to follow in the footsteps of her grandmother who has the most beautiful memories, and for her is a great example to follow, she was a great teacher of primary, always taught me the love of children and how to teach them with love, for her it was very easy because with her sweetness and dedication she managed to obtain different awards as a teacher. I am very happy to be an assistant and substitute teacher at Escuela Viva, this is where I really want to work, because I work in teams and with great professionalism. Working with these beautiful children means a lot to me. Each child has a unique set of strengths, talents and interests. The child’s first years of life are the most extraordinary stage of growth and development. Each child and family have unique gifts and abilities that must be celebrated and nurtured. Your main goal will be to complete your English studies to obtain your (AAS) in Early Childhood Education from Mt. Hood Community College in order to provide high quality learning experiences and values such as responsibility, kindness, kindness, obedience, love of nature , tolerance, perseverance among other important values for the formation of a child so that they are excellent citizens willing to collaborate to improve the development of their community.
Martha San Juan
Early Preschool Teacher
Since November 2012
Martha Sanjuan is currently taking classes at Mount Hood community college, and is eager to finish her early childhood career. She is fluent In Spanish and in her native language Mixteco, and is working very hard to perfect her English. She is most importantly a beautiful mother of two terrific children. Martha and her son Jorge were first attracted to Oregon in 2000, where she gave Birth to her second lovely child Janet. She enjoys taking hikes in the beautiful gorge and soaking up the wonderful sights of the waterfalls with her family. She was born and raised in a little village in Oaxaca, Mexico. Martha is a volunteer for the Nature Conservancy and is now a mentor for a program named Transiciones. She is a very kind, caring and loving person, not to mention very nurturing. She wants to impact the lives of children and loves spending quality time with her family no matter what the weather is outside.
Early Preschool Teacher
Since November 2017
Nací el 29 de diciembre 1.985 en Maracaibo, Venezuela, mis estudios universitarios los termine en el año 2009 con un buen rendimiento académico, soy graduada en la Universidad Dr. José Gregorio Hernández, como Licenciada en Recursos Humanos, proveniente de una familia humilde aprendí el valor de las cosas mas importantes de la Vida; la Sinceridad, el trabajo y el Amor por los demás, los cuales aplico a diario como mi razón de ser. Ejercí mi carrera profesional en Venezuela sin embargo cuando llegue a los Estados Unidos decidí trabajar con niños, ya que es algo que siempre me llamó la atención y aquí he tenido la oportunidad de hacerlo.
Mi trabajo como Baby Sitter me ha dado la experiencia necesaria en el cuidado de niños, sobre todo con la vivencia que he tenido durante los años a nivel familiar ya que he tratado con especial atención a todos los pequeños de la casa. Además, la labor de Auxiliar de Aula me ha permitido día a día obtener conocimientos en la guía y enseñanza.
Dando gracias a Dios por la oportunidad que he tenido de ofrecer mi Idioma como manera de aprendizaje a niños que en un futuro serán Bilingües.
Lead Infant/Toddler Teacher
Glenna Reyes grew up in Chicago, IL as a heritage Spanish speaker. She transferred from Loyola University to Portland State University in 2009, after studying abroad in Beijing, China. She began working at Escuela Viva as a sub while pursuing her undergraduate degree and has been a part of the EV community as a teacher, sub, assistant and volunteer on and off for about 10 years. She quickly discovered a passion and love for early childhood education and the Escuela Viva philosophy. She began in the Infant Toddler classrooms, then worked as a Tortuguitas, Angelitos and Expressive Arts teacher. After 5 years she left to expand her experience and finish her degree. She received her Bachelor’s in Psychology and Qualified Mental Health Associate in 2014. Then she worked for Portland Public Schools Head Start as a bilingual educational assistant for two years. During that time she was a leader on the Equity Committee and a member of the pilot team for a new curriculum called Tools of the Mind, which shares many similarities to this schools philosophy. She has continued her studies since she graduated from PSU at Portland Community College, taking coursework related to Elementary Education and Special Ed. This past year she worked as a one-on-one instructional aid at Serendipity center in the elementary communications classroom where she learned more about behavior management, trauma informed care, individualized instruction for children with learning disabilities, and non-violent crisis intervention.
Her approach with children is to empower and teach them to be in control of their own learning. She uses a variety of expressive arts tools like music, dance, dramatic play and creative arts and crafts to give the children a variety of tools to explore and learn about their friends and the world around them. She is very happy to be back at Escuela Viva because she gets to share her joy, laughter, creativity, kindness, and youthful spirit with children, families and her co workers.
Infant/Wobbler Teacher (Cachorros Class)
Since July 2015
Yarisell was born on February 18, 1982 in the city of Holquin, Cuba. Since childhood she excelled in sports and cultural activities at school, as well as in the neighborhood and community, meanwhile maintaining a satisfactory level of work within her studies, too. Art and culture were also a mark on her childhood development.
In 2002, Yarisell went to school to study Elementary Education with a specializing in computer education. She was proud to be attending because it was her dream come true to work with children. In the year 2007 Yarisell graduated with a Bachelors of Education with a specializing in computing. At this time she went to work at a school for children between the ages of 2-12 years.
Yarisell began her work life with children of different ages, personalities and character. It was necessary to draw up an action plan aimed at the formation of ethical and moral values in her students’ work. She also worked to develop teaching methods that made the learning accessible to every student. During this time she participated in seminars, events and practices for the education of children.
In 2012, Yarisell left Cuba to join her husband who lived in the city of Portland, Oregon. She made the move with the idea of continuing her studies and finding a job that is equal to or very similar to that which she had in Cuba. In July, 2015, she started working as a volunteer teacher at Escuela Viva. She has developed a great love and interest for her work here at EV and is doing what she really likes to do, working with children.
Mirian Carrera Ventura
Hello, my name is Mirian M. Carrera Ventura. I am from Mexico City, but both my parents are from the state of Puebla, Mexico. I consider myself from Puebla as well. I immigrated to the U.S. in 2003. I lived in New York City for almost three years. There I met my husband and my oldest son was born there.
We moved to Oregon in 2007, at first, I did not like it, though in time I fell in love with all the nature we are surrounded by. In 2011 my second child was born. During those years I enrolled in English classes at Mt. Hood Community College because it is not my first language. In 2013 I completed my GED and from there I started my journey through college. Thankfully, I enrolled in the Transitions Program which helps me explore careers and also to identify my personal skills. I am still in college trying to complete my General Studies degree and after that I think I am going to transfer to a university. Even though it is hard, I will continue to pursue my education because I believe it is important to teach my kids the value of education. My family is the precious gift that life has given me. We love to play soccer and to be outdoors together.
I started working at Escuela Viva a few months ago. I love to be around these amazing kids and babies. Being around them has inspired me to think about possibly studying in the field of early childhood education. Working at Escuela Viva has been an amazing experience for me. The atmosphere is filled with a lot of love, which I have never experienced in my other jobs because this is my first job working with little kids.
Infant/Toddler TA (Sapitos Class)
Since March 2017
Nombre completo PATICIA KAROLINA GUTIERREZ BRACHO, nací el 22 de octubre de 1992 en Venezuela, Maracaibo-Edo Zulia, soy graduada de la Universidad del Zulia (LUZ) como Licenciada en Administración. Nací rodeada de una familia que me enseñó los valores más importantes de la vida, el respeto, la humildad, responsabilidad y honestidad. A lo largo de mi adolescencia tuve la oportunidad de trabajar en una agrupación de eventos infantiles que por medio de mi actuación transmitía felicidad a los niños y a su ve ellos a mí, esto me impulso a tomar la decisión de buscar un trabajo el cual este en contacto siempre con ello. Gracias a la empresa “AMIGUITOS” (VENEZUELA) pude cumplir mi objetivo.
En noviembre de 2016 tome la decisión de emigrar a los Estados Unidos junto a mi esposo, en mis tiempos libres me gusta ir de compras y compartir con mi esposo. “La sonrisa de un niño es la pureza de DIOS”
Patricia Karolina Gutierrez Bracho, born October 22, 1992 in Venezuela, Maracaibo-Edo Zulia. I am a graduate of the University of Zulia (LUZ) with a credential in Administration. I grew up surrounded by a family which taught me the most important values in life, respect, humility, responsibility and honesty. Throughout my adolescence, I have had the opportunity to work in a variety of child-based settings which always allowed me to soak in the happiness they exude as well as return that happiness to them when they see me. This was the impulse behind my decision to look for a job in which I am always surrounded by them. Thanks to “Amiguitos” in Venezuela I was able to accomplish my goal.
In November, I made the decision to immigrate to the United States along with my husband. In my free time, I like to go shopping and share time with my husband. “The smile of a child is the purity of God”
Cachorros/Sapitos Teaching Assistant Morning Shift
Since May 2018
My name is Edivor Chiquinquira Gonzalez de Finon. I am Venezuelan and my native language is Spanish. I was born in the state of Maracaibo Zulia. I was born on June 30, 1981. I studied Business Administration. I got married and I have three children. I was able to practice in my country as a professional, but for personal reasons I had to immigrate to the United States. My life here changed drastically, not only because of the language, but also because it has been difficult for me to practice my profession. After having experience as a mother, I discovered that I like to work with children. One of my first jobs was in a daycare center for immigrants that serves low-income children. There I found my passion and discovered new skills that I had never experienced as a caregiver or assistant in the area of early childhood.
One of my passions is my family. My family is the most important thing to me. One of our hobbies is baseball. My oldest son plays on a team. We love Venezuelan food and we are proud of our roots.
My goals for the future are to have a command and fluency of the English language as well as to grow professionally in the area of early childhood education. Working at Escuela Viva, I not only gained more experience but I have reinforced some of my skills as a early childhood teacher.
Marisol Pichardo Barrales
Cachorros/Sapitos Teaching Assistant Afternoon Shift
I’m Marisol Pichardo Barrales. I was born in Oaxaca, Mexico. My family is the greatest gift that God has given me. In 2014, I participated as a volunteer in Sacajawea Head Start. At that time, my interest in working with children began. I’m a pastry chef at heart! Thanks to this skill, I was invited to share pastry classes with parents and children from Albina Early Head Start schools.
In April 2016 I had the opportunity to work at Escuela Viva as an assistant in the class of Angelitos and Estrellitas. At the moment, I am supporting the Cachorros and Sapitos classes. I currently attend Maywood Campus, with the aim of continuing to learn and, in the not too distant future, to be able to fulfill my goals.
Soy Marisol Pichardo Barrales. Nací en Oaxaca México. Mi familia son el regalo más grande que Dios me han dado. En el año 2014 participé como voluntaria en Sacajawea Head Start. En ese momento inició mi interés de trabajar con niños. !Soy repostera de Corazon! Gracias a esta habilidad fui invitada a compartir clases de reposteria a padres y niños de las escuelas Albina Early Head Start.
En Abril de 2016 tuve la oportunidad de trabajar en Escuela Viva como asistente en la clase de Angelitos y Estrellitas. Por el momento estoy apoyando a las clases de Cachorros y Sapitos. Actualmente asisto a Maywood Campus, con la finalidad de seguir aprendiendo y en un futuro no muy lejano poder cumplir mis metas.
Cocinera y Coordinador del Programa del Jardin/Kitchen and Garden Coordinator
Since May 2016
Alexis has been an environmental educator since 2003, working with students ages 1-21. She holds a BS in Environmental Science and Community Development from Portland State University. At PSU, she was a chef at a student run cafe and fell in love with garden education. Then, she traveled the world shadowing gardening teachers, guest teaching, and work trading with urban farmers. For Alexis, traveling opened a wide world of best practices regarding cooking, cleaning, shopping, gardening, and passing time. She took these practices to her previous work as a preschool kitchen and garden manager, and started a business called Young Abundance. Alexis is ecstatic to share her passion for Spanish, permaculture, and all things food, with our precious little folks.
Since November 2013
Alejandra Enriquez was born in California, but raised in Oregon, and has always gone back and forth between the two wonderfully unique states. After attending Saint Mary’s College of California to obtain her degree in Archaeology/Anthropology, the Great Norhwest was calling to Alejandra once again. Since 2010 she has been happy to call Portland her home.
Alejandra has been working with children for almost ten years now, and hopes to continue growing as a teacher along with the children she teaches. Prior to Escuela Viva, Alejandra worked in a small in-home care center, a center for migrant worker’s children, and as a sub for Providence Wee Care.
During her time at Saint Mary’s, Alejandra became involved with a program called Jumpstart, a program that provides preschoolers who come from low-income households the skills to succeed in kindergarden. She was able to expand on her Spanish speaking skills in a predominantly Latino community and loved the challenge of having to speak in a another language. When moving to Portland from the Bay Area, Alejandra had hoped she could find something as challenging and rewarding as teaching in a Spanish speaking school. To her excitment, she was able to find that in Escuela Viva, where she hopes to learn even more Spanish from her students and co-teachers.
In her free time, Alejandra loves exploring Portland by walking whenever she can, hiking around the Gorge where she grew up, crafting many items she’s used to furnish her apartment, and collecting vintage antiques from her Abuelita (great-grandmother) and grandmother. Alejandra hopes to furthur her education by going to back to school for a Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education and is so excited to have the community at Escuela Viva help her grow!
Rachael is thrilled to be joining the staff at Escuela Viva. Her most recent teaching experience includes: pre-k teacher at a private school in SE Portland and lead pre-k English teacher for Oregon Child Development Coalition, where she taught Oregon pre-kindergarten during the regular year and Migrant Head Start during the summers. During her time there, Rachael improved her Spanish speaking skills while building relationships with staff, students and families. Prior to her time at OCDC, Rachael was a part time nanny for three different families and a substitute teacher. Rachael has been teaching for 11 years, the last three years spent as a dedicated pre-k teacher.
Rachael completed her Bachelors of Arts in Early Childhood and Elementary Education at Western Oregon University in 2006 and returned home to Milwaukie to explore different ages and grades as a substitute. After a backpacking trip to Costa Rica in June of 2007, she became inspired to move abroad to teach English and travel. In October of 2007, Rachael packed her bags and was on her way to Thailand to teach English! She taught ages 2-4 at a private kindergarten, additionally tutoring older students at a partner school. During her year abroad, Rachael realized her love for learning about different cultures, customs, languages and working with younger children. She also had the opportunity to travel all around Thailand and spent two weeks visiting and exploring Italy with her brother, who was stationed there at the time in the Air Force. Rachael’s year abroad expanded her world and changed her as an educator and individual. She moved back to the states in 2008 to begin her Masters’ degree in Education and Curriculum at Concordia University Portland, which she completed in 2011.
Although Rachael was born in Phoenix, Arizona, she grew up in Milwaukie, Oregon. She comes from a big family of five: two older sisters and two younger brothers. Rachael and her fiancé, Adam, live on Hawthorne and love inner SE Portland. They have two cats named Maximilano and Sophie and two rabbits named Falcon and Panda. Rachael and Adam enjoy traveling, visiting the beach, skiing on the mountain, trying new foods, spending time with family and friends and attending sporting events, especially Beaver football games and Portland Timbers’ soccer matches. In her free time, Rachael is an avid reader and writer and has dreams of being a published author someday.
Rachael is passionate about teaching, but she is especially passionate about dual language education. She even wrote her Masters’ thesis on the benefits of dual language immersion education. She also enjoys singing and dancing and knows how essential play is in early learning and development.
Since February 2012
Jerri was born near Corvallis, Or. but grew up in Bend. She graduated from Bend Senior High School and went on to graduate from Southern Oregon State University with a degree in elementary education. She earned an Oregon Teaching Certificate and taught children with visual impairments and other disabilities in Eastern Oregon until the birth of her first son. At that time her family included several foster children with special needs, so she became a stay at home mom. After the birth of her second son, and after the foster children moved into adult services, she opened a daycare/preschool in her home. Seven years later she returned to classroom teaching working with children with special needs for the next ten years at Serendipity Center in Portland. Four and a half years ago she was hired by Escuela Viva and co-taught the elementary class with Amelia for one year. The next year they co-taught a kinder pre-K mix. The next fall she opened a business with her sons which ultimately failed. She returned to Escuela Viva in the summer 2012 where she worked with the Pumas class and most recently is working as a substitute. In addition to her sons she has two Grandsons, Malakai and Marsyas.