Faculty/Staff

I have a passion for helping children reach their potential. Through my high school and college years, I taught dance and tutored math. I wanted to learn a new method.

I discovered Montessori through my children. I watched as my daughter wanted to make her own PB&J sandwich everyday after school and was even capable of the clean up process. I watched as she learned names of countries and their respective flags. I watched as my daughter looked at a Vincent Van Gogh sunflower painting at the tender age of three and shouted, “Bincent Ban Go!” I was amazed and hooked. I subsequently made the decision to become a trained Montessori teacher.

I came to realize the untapped potential children have. Over the course of almost 20 years, I have served several years as a teacher in a Primary classroom, six years as Director of Three Rivers Montessori School (TRMS) in New Haven, and as a Lower Elementary teacher in Houston,TX. During the course of these years, I’ve watched children learn to read, write, do complicated math problems, learn about cultures and the natural world around us, but in addition, I’ve been fortunate to watch them develop as curious, independent, self motivated and compassionate human beings!

As a director of TRMS, I heard several prospective parents say, “If only you were located on the SW side of Fort Wayne, I would enroll. The program is amazing, but I cannot drive so far.” Hence, I made the decision to offer Montessori education on the SW side of town.

Over the course of my educational life, I have my degrees in Computer Science from the University of Illinois. In addition I have Montessori credentials in Early Childhood Education from Seton Montessori Institute and my Lower Elementary and Administration credentials from Houston Montessori Center. After attending a couple of workshops on Positive Discipline, I also chose to become a Certified Positive Discipline Parent Educator. I continue as an adult to grow and embrace my own love of learning by attending and presenting in as many educational conferences as possible.

I am thrilled to be able to build a premier Montessori program in Fort Wayne!

When I discovered the Montessori philosophy, I fell in love with it! I feel that it makes so much sense and I wish that I would have been taught these concepts when I was a child. It is truly a blessing to see children internalize basic respect, grace and courtesy, and self-discipline. I love being able to experience a child’s holistic growth over the course of three years.

I am originally from Muncie, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Ball State in 2000. Upon graduating, I moved to St. Louis to pursue a sales career in the events/hospitality field. I soon left my career and went to work at a Montessori preschool because I felt like I needed to fully use my God-given talents. In the twelve years since receiving my AMS Montessori credential, I have worked at Montessori schools near St. Louis, Indianapolis, and right here in Ft. Wayne. I hold a nationally recognized Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, and am also a Certified Positive Discipline Parent Educator and Classroom Educator.

I am so excited to be a part of Southwest Montessori Academy

I have had a love for learning and teaching since I was very young. I was homeschooled as a child and then went on to attend Miami University where I received my Bachelors in Early Childhood Education in 2011.

Experiencing my first job opportunities fresh out of college; the public school and daycare setting were not for me. After some research, I was led to Montessori! I completed my Montessori Training in May of 2015 in Adrian, MI while being a classroom assistant here at Southwest Montessori Academy.

I am currently beginning my Masters in Montessori Education through Xavier University and could not be more excited with where my experiences have led me! I can’t wait to begin my 4th year here at Southwest Montessori Academy.


I am Micheala Pattison and I am the Administrative Assistant. I am currently working on my bachelor’s degree in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication with minors in Business and Public Relations from Purdue University-Fort Wayne.

My experience in education began when I was a senior in a traditional public high school as a student teacher and teaching assistant during my study halls for secondary education (5-7 grade). I love learning and want to foster that love of learning and I believe it starts early on. I have also worked in marketing and development for adult education as well as information technology at the university level. After being exposed to these various experiences, I found Southwest Montessori Academy and could not be more excited!

This is my first year at Southwest Montessori Academy. I’m originally from the state of Iowa where I was born and raised. I moved to Indiana 15 years ago after completing my Montessori training. I received my Infant/Toddler Montessori training from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder, Colorado. I have been a toddler Montessori teacher for 14 years. I am very excited to be working with primary-aged children. I look forward to continuing my Montessori development on the 3-6 level and am very happy to be working with your children.
I have always had a passion for working with children. I began my college experience as an Early Childhood Education major. I soon learned of the Montessori program and, driven by curiosity, decided to observe in the primary classrooms. I was so impressed by the methods practiced in the Montessori classrooms and the success of the students there that I knew I wanted to be a Montessori teacher. I love the Montessori approach and wholeheartedly believe in the philosophy upon which it is based.

I am originally from Decatur; I moved to Fort Wayne this summer after getting married to my husband Noah. I attended Xavier University in Cincinnati. I graduated in May with a degree in Montessori Education.

I am so excited to start my teaching career and to be a part of the Southwest Montessori Academy community!

Hello friends! I am Alexis Vandemark. I am currently enrolled in Ivy Tech and am finishing my associates degree in Human Services this year! My goal is to transfer into IPFW and finish a Bachelors in Human Services.

I love working with the students here at Southwest Montessori Academy. I am honored to be able to learn and grow this year with our staff and our students!