Spanish is taught Kindergarten through Sixth Grade. Students develop their ear and accent through conversation, singing, and consistent practice. The small class size ensures individual attention and practice.
Lars Johanesson and Adriana Villalon
Students start with weekly lessons in the recorder in 1st and 2nd grade and move on to instruments like the clarinet, flute, saxophone, violin, cello, piano, drums, and even the ukelele and show off their skills in our annual spring concert.
Lars has had 15 years teaching experience and specializes in silver flute, Irish flute and baroque flute. Lars has studied at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and the Royal Conservatory of Hague in Holland.
Adriana has over 20 years experience as an instrumental music instructor. As a violinist, she has always tried to incorporate music into her teaching when possible and specializes in music therapy.
In their weekly art class with Nicole, students will work with a variety of media over the school year exploring their creativity and imagination creating original works and learning art techniques. Nicole brings 6 years of experience developing art curriculum as the Executive Director of Young Rembrandts in the bay area to her art instruction.
Anne teaches songs, dance songs, and games from around the world. Through a lively program that integrates movement, singing and musicianship skills, she helps the children to develop their innate sense of melody and rhythm with joy, instilling in them the confidence in their ability to create beauty in the world through music. Children showcase their vocal skills at our annual spring concert.
Anne graduated from UCSC with a BA in Music, and has devoted her life to the arts. For the past 20 years she has been involved in Waldorf education and most recently received her MA in Waldorf Education. She has been teaching and performing music and dance in the Bay Area for the past 30 years and enjoys working with all ages.
Originally from Santa Cruz, Noah Luce graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cornish College of the Arts in 2011 with a BFA in Acting. He is an experienced voice and speech teacher, has interned at the Seattle Children’s Theater, and run children’s acting workshops for children aged 7-13. He is a working stage actor and has been the Operations Manager for Santa Cruz Shakespeare for the last two seasons.
The Santa Cruz Children’s School community puts on an original musical theater production every other school year. Every student will have a roll and the whole community comes together to make everything happen. It is truly a highlight and everyone the original songs for two years until the next production! The next production will be in the spring of the 2019-2020 school year.
The K-6 history curriculum at Children’s School builds community by engaging all the school’s students with the same area of inquiry at the same time. While the level of instruction changes from group to group, all grades study the same subjects and themes, which creates a shared experience and allows students of all ages to discuss what they’re learning. The focus, while meeting CA state standards, will expand from local governments, state, national, and final global government models.
Tara Firenzi has been teaching history since 2003. Her experience includes ten years teaching AP World History at Pacific Collegiate School, where she also served as Chair of the History Department, and Dean of Faculty. She majored in history at UCLA, and earned a masters degree in History from Stanford. She is credentialed by the state of California to teach both history and physical education, as well as holding an administrative credential. Tara is also a tap dancer, and dance instructor, who teaches at several different studios in Santa Cruz County.
This year Eleonora began a civics course for the eldest two groups at SCCS and we couldn’t be more excited. Together they explore how our government works and our role in governing our society in Socratic style class discussions.
Eleonora is a published author and has been a Political Science professor at UCSC since 2003. Professor Pasotti’s research interests include: comparative urban politics, European politics, democracy & democratization, public policy, political economy. She teaches courses on democracy, democratic transition, European politics and methodology.
As a supplement to the creative writing skills program, the SCCS Cruz Kids Chronicle is designed to give the children greater understanding of how to communicate their stories in a succinct and ordered way. 5th and 6th grade students learn to research, write, edit and lay out their article, taking great pride in the final publication. They are encouraged to pitch feature ideas and to research their stories using the library and internet.
Mariah Roberts is responsible for production and design of the School Newspaper and Story Anthology compilations. She has a Masters in Education, is certified as an Education Specialist and also works as a designer who specializes in public art installations.
This year, Michele Bigley has designed an ecology curriculum to educate the students about the critical need to take care of our planet and ways in which even actions on a small scale can make a difference. Guest speakers, beach cleanups, recycled materials projects, and awareness education are all part of give the students of SCCS ownership and power over the future of their home.
Michele Bigley is a journalist, travel writer, public speaker, dancer, and passionate activist for the earth.
Physical Sciences: Chemistry
This year’s science focus with Deric is chemistry. Students of all ages learn the fundamentals of chemistry and explore these concepts with hands-on experiments.
This year Nicole has designed a wonderful S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) class that has instantly become a favorite. With hands-on projects students work together to solve design challenges that incorporate creativity and teamwork and stress the value of learning from failed attempts and trying again.
P.E. and Teambuilding
Deric McLean, Eisha Carroll, and Aaron Drake
Physical education is an important part of the student’s weekly education. Exercise, sports, and active games play an important role in maintaining physical health as well as supporting the students’ social and emotional development.
Starting in Kindergarten students start with simple games that progress in complexity over time to develop skills like turn taking, sportsmanship, and following directions. These skills are incorporated into age-appropriate team building games that support all aspects of their education, both on the field and in the classroom. With an emphasis on cooperation, kindness, and sportsmanship students are also introduced to the rules and proper techniques of sports and activities like soccer, volleyball, disc golf, and more.
Literacy and Math Coach
Rachel Surkis Annon
Rachel Surkis Annon has been teaching in Santa Cruz County for nearly twenty years. With an M.A. in Education from UC Santa Cruz, and credentials as a multiple subject classroom teacher and an early childhood educator, she has taught toddlers to teens. Currently, she works as a Certified Educational Therapist. In 2009 Rachel joined the staff at Developmental Learning Solutions. Since then, she has provided individualized support, utilizing methods and materials specific to the goals and style of each learner. She works closely with students, families and schools to create sustainable success, as well as foster confidence and a love of learning.
After school workshops and short term classes
In addition to our year-long enrichment classes we offer a variety of workshops both during school hours and as part of our after-school program.