Living Wisdom School teachers are experienced and trained in the Education for Life system. In addition to the regular classroom teachers, we have experienced specialists in the areas of yoga and meditation, music, drama, art, and language. Nature awareness, organic gardening and field trips also enrich the curriculum.
Natalia Morales-Wiedmaier, School Co-Director
Natalia Morales-Wiedmaier is a native of Spain and holds an MA in Spanish Philology. She has more than 15 years of experience teaching Spanish at all levels to all ages groups, from elementary school children to middle and high school students, as well as adults. She has been on the faculty of The Overlake School, a private NWAIS accredited school in the area for the past decade, and has also been a faculty member at the University of Washington. She also brings to LWS her experience as a founder and manager of her own language school. Natalia is a certified Ananda Yoga Instructor and attended Education for Life Intensive Program. Natalia loves creating community by embracing the various cultures of the students and their families that she works with. She is married and has a son, plus two dogs!
Nivritti Steenstra, School Co-Founder & Consulting Director
Nivritti Steenstra holds a BA in Biology and an MS in Education, as well as a Standard Washington State Teaching Certificate. She is certified in Environmental Education, and holds the Education for Life teaching certification. Nivritti brings 14 years of experience as an elementary school teacher and administrator in Kent and Lake Washington School Districts to her role at LWS, as well as an enthusiasm for nature!
William Breckenridge Director Assistant
While studying for his B.A. in History at Gonzaga University and Eastern Washington University, William worked for Snap Fitness for seven years–five as a sales person (South Hill, Spokane, WA location) and two years as a manager (Cheney, WA). He also worked part-time as a radio DJ/announcer at KEWU, Cheney for a year. He graduated in 2015 from EWU with his B.A. degree and subsequently applied to teach English abroad in Japan via the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. William lived in Goto, Nagasaki, Japan from July 2016-July 2017 where he learned teaching techniques, Japanese, flexibility and adaptability. He sees his new position at the Living Wisdom School as a fulfillment of his previous jobs: a combination of marketing ideas and the passion to contribute positively to childhood education.
Madchen Sen, Middle School Teacher, Grades 6-8
Madchen taught at the Junior High and High School level in the Palm Springs CA Unifed School District for the last eight years prior to joining our staff. Although her specialties are math and language arts, she has taught all subjects. Her BA with an Environmental Studies focus is from California State at Chico. She is excited about helping to build a middle school program that is more balanced and expansive than is available in public schools. She enjoys taking the students out into the community whether to a museum, an overnight at an organic farm, or for community service. Madchen is the mother of five.
Ashley Berg, Elementary Teacher, Grades 3-5
Ashley’s background includes a BA in Education & Art and she has a Standard Washington State Education Certificate certifying her to teach all Elementary subjects in grades K-8. She also holds a state endorsement in Art Education for grades K-12, as well as the Education for Life Provisional Certification. Ashley’s diverse experience includes teaching experience at a private school in Mexico, as well as experience in the Seattle Public School District. Passionate about sustainability, she was instrumental in helping LWS gain Level 1 King County Green School certification.
Heather Knouse, Elementary Teacher, Grades 1-2
Heather has two decades experience working with children from pre-school through elementary. She holds degrees in Education from both Antioch and Western Washington University. Heather enjoys all aspects of working with elementary students, and her skillful guidance infuses her students with the joy of learning. She often brings her guitar to school and the children love singing with her.
Chandi Holliman, Pre-K/Kindergarten Teacher
Chandi is the Living Wisdom Preschool founder and has been a Pre-School teacher for 16 years. She holds holds the Education for Life teaching certification, Ananda Yoga and Meditation Teacher certification, and is also a Sharing Nature with Children Trainer. Her diverse background includes South Seattle Food & Hospitality Chef Certification.
Taralynn Carter Preschool Teacher
Taralynn has 15 years of Pre K-12 education experience, with specialty areas in English language development and fine arts. She has worked with early learners in the classroom, in daycare facilities, and as a private academic coach, giving her an in-depth understanding of both the educational and emotional needs of preschoolers. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University and a MA from the University of Oregon, and is certified in Community Arts Education. In her classroom, students are individually inspired to learn and grow through play, exploration, and interpretation. She loves exploring nature with her students, and using art and creative movement to expand students’ understanding of themselves and their world.
Sarah Park-McConnell Preschool Teacher Assistant
Sarah attended the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque where she combined her major in Criminology with a minor in Psychology. She has gained experience working with children locally in Shoreline at both a Waldorf-inspired school and Dale Turner YMCA. She has come to enjoy the many personalities during her two years of experience by getting to know each child through play and mindful observation, which she has found encourages a comfortable atmosphere for both teacher and student that leads to open communication for everyone in the classroom. She is also knowledgeable in both the Korean language and culture. Sarah, who is inspired by the philosophy behind Living Wisdom School, Education for Life, is a mother to one child who currently attends Living Wisdom School.