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Central Montessori Academy – Toddler, Preschool and Elementary in Northwest Cincinnati We are an independent Montessori school nurturing and developing young scholars from toddler through sixth grade. Schedule a Visit

Auxiliary Teachers and Specialist Staff

The highly skilled and experienced faculty and staff at Central Montessori Academy often provide professional development and training to other Montessori teachers.

Our expert faculty has presented at regional, national and international conferences, on topics such as:

  • Reflective practice
  • Creating mission statements with students
  • Music education
  • Technology integration
  • Inclusion of students with diverse learning styles
  • Confidentiality issues in education
  • Montessori leadership

Additionally, members of our faculty have been special speakers on university panels and discussion groups.

Music Education

Andrea Rosenthal Warnken

Music Program, Elementary

My name is Andrea Rosenthal Warnken and I am in my tenth year of teaching at CMA. I hold a BA in English and Theatre from Ohio Northern University and a JD from the University of Cincinnati.  I clerked and worked as an attorney for several years before staying home with my two young daughters.  When I decided to go back to work, I was thrilled to get the privilege of working in music education as music is and always has been my first love.

Some of my most joyful times in teaching are those break-through moments when you see a child master a difficult rhythm, conquer a tricky harmony or revel in the final notes of their group performance.  Their self-satisfaction is worth all of the hard work.  I also love the quiet moments when they are lost in a story or a melody and are completely at ease and free.

Being that guide, that person who draws out their imagination, their creativity and their best efforts is a true pleasure.  Getting to work with a staff who are dedicated to each and every child’s development and sense of well-being is something I truly relish about CMA.  No child is ever left behind–every child is nurtured, honored and brought forth into their highest potential.

Art and Physical Education

LaDonna Brusch

Art Education Teacher

My name is LaDonna Brusch and my family joined the CMA family when our oldest daughter, Aria became a student here in 2003.  Since then, I have been a volunteer, substitute teacher and instructional assistant. I currently have fun with the elementary children in Art and Physical Education. I earned my Bachelor’s in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University and I own my own business designing and creating gymnastics leotards. In 2008, I began substitute teaching in Fairfield Public Schools before choosing to spend more time at CMA. Since then, I have worked with every level in every subject from infant to 6th grade. I love to see the thoughtfulness from our children as they challenge themselves in creative, physical and social endeavors. At CMA, we are engaged in concepts and lessons that allow us to dig deep into the things that interest us most and be exposed to things that stretch beyond our personal experience. Everyday we learn how to support each other with assistance, encouragement and respect.

Larita Hayden

Health & Physical Education Teacher

My name is Larita Hayden. I am a mother of two. My daughter, Zoe Hayden, began at CMA in 2014 at the age of three. Her little brother, Oliver, will join her in the fall of 2018. My husband, Adam, and I have been married since 2008 and enjoy living in the diverse neighborhood of College Hill.

After completing college with both an Associates (Sign Language Interpretation) and Bachelor’s degree (Biblical Studies) I studied and completed a 300 hour yoga teacher training at World Peace Yoga. I also trained and received a kids’ yoga certification with Rainbow Kids Yoga. I worked at St. Rita’s School for the Deaf as the yoga teacher from 2014 through 2018.

I love working with children and have come to appreciate the life-giving method of the Montessori philosophy. I especially enjoy experiencing children as they come to new understandings and new discoveries all on their own. It is such a joy.

I truly believe in the rich program offered here at CMA. That is why I am so glad to be a parent as well as a staff member!

Rachel Weber

Social Justice Teacher

I graduated from Ohio University with a Bachelor of Arts in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. WGSS is an interdisciplinary program that explores how gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity, nationality, class, and disability all intersect with one another to impact not only how we view the world, but how the world views us. One of the key points that I took from my studies is that so many of the biases we hold are instilled at a young age. When we have big discussions with our children about how we are all different and that’s okay, stigma doesn’t get the chance to take hold. Our children are constantly taking in information from the world around them about race, class, ability, etc. and rarely are they given the time and space to process it. The purpose of Social Justice Education is to give students the time and space to ask difficult questions and discover how their identity colors the way they see the world around them. As Maria Montessori said, “The child is both a hope and promise for mankind.” By teaching our children to be compassionate and critical thinkers, we get one step closer to achieving her vision of peace.

Intervention Specialist

Patty DeVer

Intervention Specialist

My name is Patty DeVer. I am an intervention specialist and have been a member of CMA’s staff for several years. 2020-2021 will be my 37th year in education. I am certified in all areas of special education, reading and computer science. I have a BS in Ed and MS in Ed from Youngstown State University. I have taught in public schools in Ohio, Florida and Georgia. I have taught in elementary and high school special education programs. I was a special needs coordinator/reading specialist for five years, a certified vocational evaluator for two years and a Title I Coordinator for four years. I also taught graduate coursework at Kent State University. Central Montessori Academy has been my first experience teaching at a Montessori school. I love that individuality, creativity and community are encouraged. I look forward to working with the students, staff and parents at CMA this year.

Reading Specialist

Shari Rouse

Reading Specialist

My name is Shari Rouse. I have been working at CMA since 2011 and began as an Aftercare teacher. In 2012, I was a teachers assistant in the Earth Room working with Ms. Gayla and Ms. Melina.  I am currently the before and after care coordinator, the before care teacher, and the intervention reading specialist working with all age levels on their reading and writing.  I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education with a reading endorsement from Miami University in 2007. In 2017, I graduated from Miami University with my Master’s in Language and Literacy with a Third Grade Guarantee. Since college I have worked in several educational environments and none compares to Central Montessori Academy. The most exciting aspect is the close, caring community that encompasses CMA. This community provides support to older children who are role models, to younger children who gain confidence, and to the teachers who provided freedom within limits to allow those active seekers appropriate time to pursue their knowledge and independence. CMA is not only special because of the children who provide us with laughter, joy, and the realization of why we became teachers; however it is also because of the community, families, and parents that provide support, time, and help when needed.

Speech/Language Pathologist

McKenzie Wills

Speech and Language Pathologist

My name is McKenzie Wills and this is my second serving the students at Central Montessori Academy. I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree in Speech and Hearing Science from Ohio State University in 2016. I graduated with my Master’s degree in Speech Language Pathology from University of Toledo in 2018. I have been working with a variety of populations in the school setting ever since! I have worked with preschool students to adult students in vocational training/transition programs. I loved being welcomed into the CMA community last year and look forward to another year of serving the wonderful kids, parents, and staff here!

Occupational Therapist

Rachel Bonar

Cincinnati Occupational Therapy Institute [COTI] - Occupational Therapist

My name is Rachel Bonar, I am so excited to begin working with the students, families and staff at Central Montessori Academy. l am graduate of Cincinnati State Technical and Community College’s Occupational Therapy Assistant Program and also a graduate of Miami University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology.  I have had the privilege of working with children in a variety of settings and roles. I have experience working in Lakota Local Schools as well as Cincinnati Public Schools.  Through each of these valuable experiences I have learned so much and gained even more of a passion for Occupational Therapy and helping students to have success in school. I am looking forward to contributing my skills and enthusiasm to Central Montessori Academy!”