Oakland Staff

Amy

I was born in Colorado Springs. Up to the age nine my family moved with my father’s work. He was an electrical engineer working for a company that was involved in the wiring of the missile silos. We moved almost yearly living in mostly western states. One year my family moved four times including a stint
in Australia for five months where I attended fourth grade. Thankfully my family moved to California and settled down. After graduating from college I landed a job as a Montessori assistant then I got my Montessori training as a Montessori teacher.

I have been a Montessori convert ever since. My son who is now grown attended Montessori school as a toddler through 2nd grade. When my preschool Montessori school closed in 2015 I joined the Growing Light school. My Montessori training includes preschool and elementary training. My interests
include listening to audio books, cooking, gardening, sewing and jewelry making. And I am the proud owner of three cats.

Awa

School Afternoon Director and Head Teacher for the Seahorses Class, Awa was born and raised in Senegal, West Africa. She speaks Woolof, French, Bambara, English and Spanish. She enjoys teaching cultural studies and different languages to the children. When she is not at school, she loves to cook or work on her foundation to help poor children and try to make a difference in the world.

Brenda

Wizards Teacher was born and raised in Oakland, Ca. She speaks English and Spanish. She loves spending time with the children and doing creative arts and crafts with them. She enjoys doing story time too. When she’s not at school she absolutely loves spending time with her family and visiting family in Mexico.

Carrie

My name is Carrie. I was born and grew up in Guangdong China. I have been living in Oakland with my family since I came to Unite State. I speak English, Mandarin, and Cantonese. My favorite activities to do with children are craft, art and music and movement. I also like to read stories to children. I enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, walking, and traveling. Also, playing badminton is my favorite sport. In my spare time, I like watching TV, cooking, and doing exercise at home and spending time with my children.

Ceci

Hello everyone. My name is Cecilia but you can call me Ceci. I was Born in Mexico and my first language is Spanish. I been at growing light for 15 years. Last year I was at Lafayette I like the environment kids and teachers from Lafayette but Oakland is my home since day one. And I’m happy to be back.

Debbie

Hello my name is Ms. Deb. I am your afternoon lead teacher. I’m excited to be working at Growing Light Oakland campus this year. I am blessed to be able to work with such knowledgeable and caring ladies Rebecca and Feliz you are awesome! I have many years of experience teaching. I have worked in the private and public sectors of education. My degree consist of M.A.E.D., B.A. Early Childhood Education, and B.A. in Sociology.

I am a Native of California, but have lived in Oregon and Idaho. I can speak English, a bit of Mandarin and Spanish. I was born in Merced, but currently reside in Manteca, CA.

When I am not busy being a teacher, you can find me hiking, traveling up and down California finding great and new places to explore. For example, beaches, trying new foods, BBQing and enjoying the beauty of our nature the world has to offer.

Fay

My name is Faye. I was born in Guangdong China. I can speak Cantonese, Mandarin, and English. I have been working with children for about ten years. I enjoy working with children. I respect children as individuals. When I am outside work, I like music and reading books. And I also like to travel with my family.

Felisa

Hi. My name is Felisa Aguas. You can call me Feliz. I was born in the Philippines. I speak Tagalog, English and Thai. I live in Oakland and I love its weather. I enjoy being with angels. I call them angels for their innocence and sweetness. Being with them makes me younger and inspired. Teaching these little ones make me continue to teach. I belong to Wizard class and I love teaching songs especially interpretative or action songs. I teach dance and I also love telling stories and letting children discover things through exposing them to nature. Whenever I have time, I travel alone by public vehicle and enjoying thousands of different views along the road. I also love watching movies and comedy shows. I am blessed for I am now part of Growing Light Montessori School.

Hyejin

School Director Hyejin was born and raised in South Korea, and she has lived in Hawaii, Mongolia, Colorado Springs and California. She speaks Korean and English. She loves to do tea parties with the children and curriculum planning with the teachers. When she’s not at school she loves to travel with her family, cook and look for bakeries she’s never been to before.

Kenia

I was born and raised in Los Angeles California now live here in Oakland. I am fluent in English and Spanish. I have been at Growing light for about 3 years now and I love working with children. I enjoy reading lots of books and doing arts and crafts. Family is very important to me & it’s who I spend most of my free time with.

Koey

Hummingbirds Teacher Koey was born in Guangzhou China. Fifteen years ago she and her family immigrated to the USA. She speaks Cantonese, Mandarin and English. She likes to teach children to respect and love each other, and to help them learn about different cultures and continents. When she’s not at school she likes to travel to different places, like National Parks or to different countries. At home she likes watch movies and listen to music.

Liiana

Liiana was born and raised in Tepic, Nayarit Mexico. She speaks Spanish and English. In the classroom she likes to teach math, language and nature studies to the children. When she’s not at school she likes to cook, bake, play the guitar, sing, dance, do arts and crafts and roller blade and spend time with her family.

Loida

Hello! My name is Loida Velez. I was born in Castro Valley, Ca. I lived in Hayward the beginning part of my life then grew up in San Francisco. I am of Puerto Rican descent and was able to live there during my 9th grade year where I learned to speak, write, and read Spanish. I’ve worked with children since I was 16 and have known since then that that was my gift and calling. My favorite activities with children are arts and crafts, singing and dancing, and just playing with them like tossing/catching a ball, playing games, or playing with toys right alongside them. In my free time, I enjoy watching old classic movies, spending time with family and friends, exercising and baking healthy desserts!

Lourdes

Honeybee Teacher Lourdes was born in Guanajuato, and raised in Nuevo Leon, both in Mexico. She speaks Spanish and English. She likes to go on nature walks with the children, as well as doing art, singing songs, teaching Spanish and doing body movement activities with them. When she’s not at school she loves to cook and bake.

Lupita

Honeybee Teacher Lupita was born in Tepic, Nayarit Mexico. She was raised in Mexico and the Bay Area. She speaks Spanish and English. Special interests she enjoys sharing with the children are face painting, music and dance, arts and crafts, story time and Spanish. She’s interested in being outdoors and in fitness, reading inspirational books and writing in her journal.

Rayah

Hi, my name is Rayah.
I was born and raised in South Korea and I speak both English and Korean.
I love children so much. I owned a Japanese restaurant with my husband for almost 20 years. My favorite activities with children are body performing and movement, self-directed learning through crafts and art. I also like to include singing, dancing, reading and writing a journal + making a booklet with kids as part of my teaching. My two children are already grown up, so when I have free time, I help out my husband at the restaurant and make school activities for children. I enjoy the time I spend with children every time. I am so happy to be at GLMS.

Rebecca

Wizards teacher Rebecca was born and raised in Southern California. She speaks English and studied French and Italian. She enjoys teaching the children cultural studies, math, science, arts and crafts and folk dancing. When she’s not at school she likes to spend time watching movies, reading, knitting and playing the cello.

Van

Seahorses Teacher Van was born and raised in Ho Chi Minh City in Viet Nam. She speaks Vietnamese, Cantonese, Mandarin and English. She loves working with children and enjoys activities like arts and crafts projects, teaching Montessori math and other classroom works. She loves sharing interesting stories with the children. When she’s not at school she absolutely loves going to the beach, traveling, shopping, watching movies, trying different foods and spending time with her dear family.

Vivi

Hi Everyone!! My name is Viviana but you can call me Vivi. I have been a preschool teacher for about 4 years now. I’ve worked with school age children, middle schoolers, toddlers, and of course pre-K. I love spending my time with children, they are all so unique and fun it keeps my days going. I am originally from Antioch, CA but I have recently moved to Hayward with my husband. We have have a pet bunny who’s name is Caramel. The days that I am not at school I do enjoy painting, going on walks, and trying new food spots!! Glad to be part of the GLMS team 🙂