EARLY CHILDHOOD LEAD
Johanna brings a love for nature, enthusiasm and creativity to Rainbow Garden. Johanna received her Waldorf Early Childhood Teaching Certification from Sunbridge Institute and has a B.A. in Merchandising Management and Apparel Production Management from IADT. Johanna loves being outdoors with her husband and children; especially camping, at the beach or on a road trip!
Early Childhood LEAD
Carlene is a founding parent of Four Winds Waldorf School has been teaching kindergarten at Four Winds for 12 years, with 18 years of classroom experience. She completed her training at the West Coat Institute for Studies in Anthroposophy in Vancouver, Canada. Inspired by the peace of nature and the delight of seasonal festivals, she brings joy and creativity to her storytelling and movement work with her class. Her two children, now adults, are Waldorf graduates.
EARLY CHILDHOOD ASSISTANT
Anna’s involvement with Four Winds began when her children started their Waldorf journey in the Early Childhood program and as they continued in the Grades program. During that time, Anna provided private childcare for six years, extended/after school care for one year and worked as an office coordinator for two years. She eventually took on a faculty position as an assistant to the EC programs, Morningstar Garden Preschool (2009-2010), Rainbow Kindergarten (2010- Spring 2016) and Oak Tree Kindergarten (Fall 2016-current). She graduated from Illinois Benedictine College where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science. Her current position provided a refreshing change in focus after working in the telephony field for twelve years.
Elizabeth is a master teacher in Waldorf Education now in her fourth cycle of teaching 1st through 8th grade. She has a passion for teaching, which includes training others to become Waldorf teachers, consultant work, and mentoring. She brings a wealth of knowledge and a sense of humor to Four Winds Waldorf School.
Bianca graduated from Millikin University with a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and a combined Master of Arts in Education and Waldorf Teacher training program at Mount Mary University through a collaboration with Great Lakes Waldorf Teacher Training. Bianca has always been passionate about children and teaching. She is so grateful that being at Four Winds allows her both the ability to be with her own two children every day, and also to explore the world creatively, artistically, and spiritually.
Karen is a co-founder of Four Winds, and has taught Early Childhood, choir, recorder, and classroom music for many years. She earned her teaching certificate from Elmhurst College, concentrating on Chemistry and Earth Sciences. She received a Therapeutic Early Childhood certificate from Gradalis Institute and looks forward to graduating from Sunbridge Institute with a Waldorf grades teacher certificate in March 2017. She joined the grades faculty in 2013. She brings a love of nature and music to the classroom.
Mari holds a BA from DePaul University and a Waldorf teaching certificate from Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Education Program. She has 8 years experience as a grades teacher and 5 years as a Parent/Child teacher. She has taught at Four Winds for the last seven years.
All of her adult life, Naomi has worked in the Steiner Education movement, including early childhood and grades class teaching and educational support. Naomi’s Oak Park home kindergarten was the founding impulse for the Four Winds Grade School. Since 2012 she has enjoyed making numerous trips to support the growth of Waldorf Education in China by participating in teacher training and mentoring. Naomi holds a BS and Master’s degree in Education, as well as specific training in several forms of sensory motor integration and is currently teaching 5th grade main lesson and offering educational support.
Brenna, a graduate of Arcturus Waldorf Teacher Training, started her journey as a teacher as an assistant in the three day Early Childhood program. She has been teaching in the grade school since 2010. Brenna is the mother of four wonderful children. She brings to the classroom a love of the outdoors, and a passion for hands-on learning, math and science.
Olivia joined Four Winds School in 2013, and currently teaches Spanish in grades 1 through 8. She is a heritage Spanish speaker and has had several academic essays published. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Elmhurst College.
EDUCATIONAL SUPPORT TEACHER
Beverly McGrath joined Four Winds as an Educational Support Teacher in September of 2012. She has taught in both Waldorf and public school settings. Beverly has completed Waldorf Teacher Training, Waldorf Extra Lesson Training and holds an IL State Teacher’s Certificate in Special Education and is a Learning Behavior Specialist. She has also completed two full years of Anthroposophy Courses at Emerson College, UK and Southfield, MI and holds two Master’s Degrees.
Nancy J. Della
Nancy J.Della is a German native that relocated to Chicago in the 90’s. She has played the violin since she was a child becoming the youngest member of the Berlin Symphony Orchestra in history. In addition to teaching violin she taught at the University of Chicago and used to be a classroom teacher at different Waldorf schools.
Shiho's involvement with Waldorf journey began when her child started in the Kindergarten program at The Waldorf School of Lexington, MA in 2002. After she moved to Chicagoland in 2004, she has been accompanying choir, orchestra and Eurythmy at Four Winds Waldorf school. She is also serving as an Eurythmy accompanist at Urban Prairie Waldorf School in Chicago. She received bachelor of music from Musashino Academia Musicae in Japan. She enjoys working with wide range of local singers and instrument players.
Thea Olsen joined the Four Winds faculty in January of 1999 as an early childhood assistant, after completing a degree in early childhood education. She started teaching handwork the following fall, and thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to share her love of handwork with the children. She also loves playing music-primarily singing and playing the hammered dulcimer-both at school events and outside of school. She is the mother of 3 children, 2 of whom are Four Winds students.