Our teachers are the heart of Cottage and the base of our success. Passion, inspiration, empathy, creativity, understanding and generousity or time & spirit define these wonderful teachers.
Teacher Sahar joined Cottage as the Director of curriculum in 2011, bringing with her, 20 years of experience in child development. In addition to a Bachelor's degree in Human Services and Management and a Master's in Early Childhood Education, Sahar possesses a sense of compassion and calm that allow children (as well as their parents) to express their really big feelings. Sahar's in depth knowledge and understanding of child development have proven to be a tremendous resource for Cottage parents who are often turning to her for child centered solutions.
Oak Tree & Rainforest Lead Teacher
Carl Gorman comes to Cottage with 20 years of experience working with children and families. He has over 20 units of child development classes and has worked in other play-based preschool programs. Carl is enthusiastic about joining the Cottage teaching team and he brings a fun, dynamic energy in the classroom.
Carl is passionate about being outdoors and spends his time outside of the classroom going for hikes and bike rides. Carl takes great pride in being a part of each child's growth and development and is excited to be joining the Cottage family this year.
Oak Tree & Rainforest Lead Teacher
Jocelyn Robertson started as a parent at Cottage with her son, Walter, and has worked as a substitute teacher in both the small yard and big yard before joining the Cottage teaching team in 2015. She has a Master's degree in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College and understands, believes and implements the Cottage philosophy in a natural, intrinsic way. Jocelyn is mom to current Cottage student Vivienne.
Oak Tree & Rainforest Associate Teacher
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Faith Hutchens was born and raised on an intentional community called The Farm in Tennessee, a good place to develop an interest in alternative education and the role of community. She moved to New York after high school, where she received her bachelors in psychology with a minor in education from The New School in 2011. She held several teaching positions after college, beginning with teaching English to 2nd graders in Chinatown Manhattan, and ending with a teaching job at a progressive co-op preschool, with a play based philosophy, in Brooklyn. Faith moved to Los Angeles last year and has been searching for a school that was a good fit, when she found Cottage Co-op Nursery School and began substitute teaching. Faith is so happy to be at Cottage, where play is a child’s most important work. As a teacher she strives to create and maintain a learning environment for children where they can explore and develop in a safe and nurturing atmosphere. During her free time she loves hiking, rock climbing, cooking, and exploring Los Angeles. Faith is currently perusing a PhD in Education, with a focus on Teaching, Learning, and Culture, at Claremont Graduate University.
Mulberry and Olive Lead Teacher
Breana Carrisosa has been a preschool teacher for 7 years and completed her studies in Child Development at Pasadena City College. She was born and raised in southern California. After working as a nanny, she taught at local preschools working with all age groups.
Breana is passionate about working with children, she strives to be the best she can possibly be with them. She enjoys helping them learn while they grow into their unique selves. As a child she experienced a difficult time in elementary school and endeavours to ensure all children are excited and enthusiastic about their first years in school. She is grateful for the opportunity to play such an integral part in each child's life.
Mulberry and Olive AssociateTeacher
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Jason Ballard was introduced to Cottage as a parent in 2012 when daughter, Brooke attended. Cottage was a perfect fit for his families parenting beliefs and from that time he has worked frequently with and has been mentored by teachers at Cottage to fully understand "the Cottage way." Jason worked as a substitute teacher in both the small yard and big yard since 2015 before joining the Cottage teaching staff in 2017. Jason is a great believer in the philosophy that a child learns best through play. He creates a fun and creative environment for his students to explore and learn through interaction with their peers and environment. He is a parent to Charlotte, currently in the Rainforest class, and Brooke, Cottage alum. When he is not working in the class, Jason is working as a professional photographer.