Faculty


Pam Cayton – Founder and CCC Director

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Originally from Australia, Pam lived and worked in Nepal for ten years where she taught English to Nepali and Tibetan children in the Kathmandu Valley. After moving to California with her family in 1988, Pam founded Tara Preschool in 1989, which she then expanded to Tara Redwood School in 1996, with the aim of educating the whole child. The purpose was not only to convey the joy of learning but to provide a foundation for the emotional and inner development of each child. Working with the school's staff, Pam researched, created and implemented strategies for awakening compassion, wisdom and social responsibility in the minds and hearts of children. In 2009, Pam began to tour the world to share her methods with educators and parents. To date, she has presented the Seven Steps at workshops in 10 countries in Europe, Asia, Australia, and North America. pam@tararedwoodschool.org


Mary Thompson–Head Preschool Teacher. Rainbow Class (Preschool, 24mo–4yrs).

Mary Thompson Tara Redwood School Preschool

Mary Thompson has been working with young children for over thirty years. In Tucson, Arizona. she became a certified Montessori teacher. She has an A.S. degree in Early Childhood Education from Cabrillo College and she has dedicated seventeen years working with preschool age children and the Family Network Preschool in Santa Cruz, Ca. Mary has also run her own  emergent curriculum that was play based before she decided to work for Tara Redwood School.

Working with young children brings Mary the most joy. To her, children are fun and magical; she believes each child is unique and that each child has something new to teach us everyday. Some of Mary's favorite hobbies and ways to enjoy her time are foraging for mushrooms and plants, gardening, science fiction, animals and spending time with her four grandchildren. mary@tararedwoodschool.org

 

 Regina Selix-Lead Teacher for the Mandala Class (PK, 3-4 yrs old)
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We feel very fortunate to have Regina join us. Regina has a degree in Education from UCSC and she has been a certified Montessori teacher since 2004.  Regina not only brings a wealth of teaching experience with her, but she is also bilingual and will bring a rich Spanish language program into the classroom as well.
Bev Gwyn —CCC  Teacher for the Mandala Class ( PK, 3–4 yrs old).
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Pre school instructor at Tara Redwood School

Bev Gwyn was born in Quebec, Canada and holds BA degree in Teaching from University of British Columbia in Vancouver. She has travelled extensively around the world and has lived in Tibet, India and Nepal. She is a student of the Tibetan Buddhist teacher Lama Yeshe and is one of the founders of the Vajrapani Institute in Boulder Creek.

Bev has been with Tara Preschool since 1992. She helped develop our beautiful CCC curriculum for 3 - 4 year old children which  she is still implementing after so many years. She is our senior preschool teacher and she has worked as a high school counselor early on. Bev will teach  the CCC program four mornings a week from 8:45 - 10:15.

Her favorite activities involve reading, meditating, gardening and being with friends.  bev@tararedwoodschool.org


Michelle Namasya Carpenter –Lead Teacher for Element Explorers Class (TK–1st, 4.5–7 yrs old)
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Michelle Namasya Carpenter has been teaching for eleven years. She is a Certified American Montessori Society (AMS) Teacher. In 2005, she created her own cooperative home school group and she founded an intentional living community focusing on sustainability and children. Namasya is an avid traveler, spending 4 years of her early adulthood traveling within the US, living abroad, and sailing throughout the world before settling down in Santa Cruz to start a family. She is a mother of two amazing children, ages 10 and 17. She believes in creating community. She is a certified Integral Hatha yoga teacher, certified Spiritual Practitioner, and is a Master Potter and teacher of pottery. She is a lifelong student and enthusiast of dance, and studied African Dancing in Ghana.

She is absolutely in love with nature, taking opportunities to meditate outside, swim in rivers, climb trees, and hike in the redwoods. She is a professional percussionist and has been an active member of a local band for the past 12 years. Namasya feels passionate about teaching children and inspiring them to see their own light within themselves, and helping them to recognize their innate connection with nature. namasya@tararedwoodschool.org


Lisa Dreyer Campiglia – Lead Teacher for Earth Stewards Class (2nd.–4th. grades, 7–10 yrs.old).

Lisa has been a member of the Tara community for over 20 years, since 1993 when she joined the school as a parent with her 2 year old daughter. Soon after she founded the Santa Cruz Adventure Trails Wilderness Camp. She has worked as a head teacher in the older Elementary class at Tara since 2005. She brings with her years of integrating CCC into her class and has Montessori Elementary Certification, a California Teaching Credential, and a Masters in Education. Lisa has an academic focus by hands-on field studies, field trips, and daily forest immersion. The global curriculum will educate the students in the interconnected nature of the planet and will focus on natural resources, indigenous studies, sustainability, and preservation of animals. Her Compassion in Action projects will supplement global programs that promote preservation and ecological recovery. Lisa has been teaching the Earth Stewards class for the last 10 years and has a Masters in Education, BA in Environmental Science, a California Teaching Credential, and a Montessori Credential. Lisa received her undergraduate education from UC Santa Barbara and her Masters in Education from UC Santa Cruz.She has also been coaching soccer at Soquel High School and teaching Capoeira at the Santa Cruz Dance Company for many years.

When Lisa is not working you can find her at the beach, in the ocean, in the Capoeira studio, or in the forest. You will also find her with her dog Rocket who has grown up at Tara too.  lisa@tararedwoodschool.org


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Jessica Steurer 

Director & Office Administration

office@tararedwoodschool.org

jessica@tararedwoodschool.org


Enrichment Course Instructors

Tara Redwood School has a curriculum that allows access to wonderful resources we have in our families and community.
We are committed to make the students' learning as experiential and stimulating as possible.
Every parent volunteer is a professional in the enrichment course they teach.

Sofia Rain – Spanish and Music Instructor

Sofia brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in Montessori lower Elementary education. She also brings her wonderful creative talents to the children, some of which are ukulele classes, Spanish language, and creative arts.

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