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.
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
Art Education Teacher
My name is Rita Gross. I am thrilled to be a member of the CMA staff. I have been in the teaching field for over 10 years as both a Paraprofessional and a lead teacher. I have had the pleasure of working with grades pre-K through 12. Before attending Miami University to follow my dream of being an art teacher, I worked in accounting for many years. I bring with me real world experience and love to show students how art and academics can be used in real life. I really enjoy being able to incorporate academics with art and vice versa. I help students see art as a form of communication and a tool they can use to express their thoughts, feelings, and ideas. I love to see students learn to use new materials or to learn to use familiar materials in a new way.
I love working with students of all different abilities. In 2012 I received my license as Intervention Specialist. I am a mother of two adult special needs children and have seen first-hand the benefits of art in their lives. I see art as an opportunity for all students to shine in their own way.
In my spare time I enjoy gardening, painting, and crafts of all kinds. I am a lifelong learner and am excited to learn new skills and techniques. I hope to bring this enthusiasm into the classroom.
I look forward to getting to know each student as individuals and bringing art experiences that are meaningful to them.
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!
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.
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 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!
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!”