Welcome to Waldorf School at Moraine Farm
At Waldorf School at Moraine Farm our mission is to help students discover and develop their individual capacities so that they can fully engage in the world and contribute meaningfully to society. We aim to cultivate clarity of thinking, compassion and moral strength, and purposeful action in our students.
Founded in 1986, Waldorf School at Moraine Farm strives to instill in our students a strong sense of community, a true enthusiasm for learning, and a deep reverence for nature. Our location at Moraine Farm, in the north shore city of Beverly, MA, allows our thriving Science in Nature Program to take full advantage of this amazing property. The campus also lends itself perfectly to our Kindergarten curriculum, giving students the opportunity to be outside exploring and experiencing nature on a daily basis. Our Early Childhood Program benefits from our location with a recently expanded campus, adding a Greenhouse for our Early Childhood Program for expanded hands-on science and gardening learning experiences. There is much that has grown in our 30 years as a school and so much more to come.
Please scroll to view our faculty and staff below.
“I wanted to be in a place where students really loved their teachers and were excited to go to school every day and where they got something bigger out of their class time....”- Waldorf School at Moraine Farm Alumna -
Early Childhood Faculty
Daisy Nursery Teacher
Stephanie Irvine was born and raised in New Zealand. She has a B.S. from Auckland University majoring in Physiology and Pharmacology. She has taken Foundation Studies and is currently taking courses at Sophia’s Hearth. Stephanie has been an assistant in nursery for many years and has also substituted in kindergarten and parent and child classes. She has two children who both attended Waldorf School at Moraine Farm. She lives in Salem with her husband and children.
Buttercup Nursery Teacher
Michaelann Murphy holds a BA in sociology and social work from the College of St. Elizabeth in Convent Station. Michaelann earned her Masters Degree in Education from Sunbridge College. Her Waldorf teaching certification encompasses early education through high school. With over 25 years of experience in the realm of early education, Michaelann has taught at a number of Waldorf and private schools, most recently at The Garden Childcare and Farmschool. As a trained and experienced biodynamic farmer, she brings years of experience creating and guiding programs for the healing of the earth and the therapeutic effects of agriculture and nature for children. She is an ordained interfaith minister and offers services to adults and children promoting peace and celebrating diversity and is actively pursuing certification as a dance leader. Michaelann, her husband and 2 of her six children have recently relocated to join Waldorf School at Moraine Farm.
Sunflower Kindergarten Assistant
Jessica Hanscom has a B.F.A. from Montserrat College of Art and is currently pursuing an M.S. with a concentration in library services for children in the School of Library and Information Science at Simmons College. Jessica has served as an assistant in the Sweet Pea and Goldenstar after-school programs, and has substituted in nursery and kindergarten classrooms at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm since 2014. In 2016, she completed the first year of Foundation Studies in Anthroposophy and the Arts. Jessica has worked as a nanny since her college days. She and her husband live in Manchester-by-the-Sea and have two children at the school.
Sunflower Kindergarten Teacher
Cristan Vineis graduated from the University of Vermont with a degree in Psychology. She received her Foundations Studies and Waldorf Teacher Training certificate from the Alkion Center at Hawthorne Valley in Ghent, NY, where she worked as an assistant for two years. Returning to her home town on Cape Cod in 2010, she started working at the Waldorf School of Cape Cod as a Parent Child teacher, early childhood assistant and extended day lead. She has 2 children, both enrolled at the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm. Cristan is also a certified birth doula.
Sunflower Kindergarten Assistant
James has a B.A. in English from Oberlin College and recently entered a multi-year program of study to become a certified Waldorf Early Childhood teacher. James began volunteering in the early childhood program in 2005 when his first daughter enrolled and began assistant teaching in 2013. James’ prior career was as a daily environmental law reporter for Bloomberg BNA in Washington, DC. He still enjoys writing on occasion for the school Newsletter. James and his wife live in Byfield and have two children at the school and one alumni from the school.
Buttercup Nursery Assistant
Friederike (“Rike”) was born and raised in a historic village in Germany, first arriving in the Boston area as an Au Pair. She has been working with young children most of her adult life. Most recently Rike enrolled in the Sophia’s Hearth teacher education program to become a certified Early Childhood Waldorf Teacher. She has worked as an assistant in the Sweet Pea and Goldenstar after-school programs and substituted in the early childhood and grades. She and her husband live in Beverly and have two young children at the school.
Lead Parent and Child Teacher
Bio coming soon
Parent and Child Assistant
Bio coming soon
Grade 1 – Grade 8 Faculty
First Grade Teacher
Jessalyn Hall attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst earning her BA with a dual focus in Anthropology and Comparative Mythology. She fell in love with class teaching at a Waldorf Charter School in Arizona, teaching grades 1-3, before moving to New York and continuing in grades 5-8. Jessalyn holds a MEd in Waldorf Education from Sunbridge College. In addition to Waldorf, Jessalyn has completed her Montessori teacher training and co-taught in Montessori elementary classrooms. In both Waldorf and Montessori schools, Jessalyn has worked as a math specialist, developing mathematics curriculum. She brings a sense of wonder and delight in learning to work with her students.
Second Grade Teacher
Rebecca Rugo holds a Ph.D. in cancer cell biology from Harvard University and previously worked as a research fellow at MIT. She brings a strong science background to her work as a Waldorf teacher. Rebecca has a dedicated, engaging and caring presence in the classroom. A native of New York, Rebecca is an alumna of the Green Meadow Waldorf School in NY. She has two children who graduated from Waldorf School at Moraine Farm.
Third Grade Teacher
Branigan holds a Master’s Degree in Waldorf Education from Antioch University New England, and a BA in Theatre Education from Emerson College. Her experience also includes teaching and directing with Boston Children’s Theatre, and founding the Prospects Out-of-School-Time Summer Theatre Program for grades five through eight. Most recently, Branigan was a Special Education teacher and Family Engagement Campus Leader at Prospect Hill Academy Charter School in Somerville, MA.
Fourth Grade Teacher
Danielle recently joined us from the Glen Urquhart School where she taught for 8 years. She has her Masters in Education and Child Development from Tufts University, where she also earned her undergraduate degree. Danielle has taught students from 1st grade through middle school with diverse economic backgrounds, first languages, and learning profiles. Danielle brings a wealth of teaching experience in various subject matters including, math, social studies, French, and literacy. She has special interest and expertise in teaching writing and elementary mathematics. Danielle was first introduced to our school when she attended parent-child classes. Danielle’s interdisciplinary teaching style, meaningful relationships with students, and collaboration with parents and colleagues have drawn her back to Waldorf education. When she’s not with her students, her greatest pastime is exploring the natural and rugged beauty of Cape Ann with her family.
Fifth Grade Teacher
Ana holds a Master’s Degree in Waldorf and Progressive Public Education from Antioch University New England, and a BFA in Theatre from NYU’s Tisch School of Performing Arts. Ana’s experience also includes teaching ESL and drama in New York City Public Schools as an employee of the non-profit Cypress Hills Development Corporation. In addition, she taught in the Portland, OR school district and managed and directed a non-profit professional children’s theatre troupe.
Sixth and Seventh Grade Teacher
Signe was born and raised in Norway and received her Liberal Arts degree in Norway with a focus in Literature, History and Foreign Languages. Signe holds a Masters Degree from Antioch University New England and a diploma in remedial work from the Association for a Healing Education. Signe has extensive experience in Waldorf Education, both as an early childhood teacher and class teacher. Most recently, Signe was a class teacher at the Princeton Waldorf School. For twenty-five years, Signe also served as an adjunct faculty to the Antioch/Center for Anthroposophy Waldorf Teacher Training Program. Signe has two Waldorf educated daughters and three grandchildren, all currently in Waldorf schools.
Heather Collis-Puro received her B.A. in Political Science and English from the University of Richmond in 1990 and for 10 years was employed by the Fund for Public Interest Research as an organizer, recruiter and Citizen Outreach Director. Heather discovered the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm in 2000 when she began Parent and Child classes with her daughter and is now the handwork teacher in the grades. Ms. Collis-Puro learned to knit, sew and embroider at an early age and takes every opportunity to add to her repertoire of handwork.
Kati Manning has taught German at the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm since 1988. She received her BA from Bowdoin College and continued post-graduate studies in elementary and high school education at Salem State University. Ms. Manning actively works on mentoring and training foreign language teachers in Waldorf schools across North America. She works with many of the local public schools as well as home-schooled students and adults.
Learning Support Liaison
Kat Marsh holds a BA from Regis College in Chemistry and German, a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Gordon College, and Massachusetts licensure in special education. Mrs. Marsh is a Fulbright Scholar who changed her career from computer software engineering to education when she began homeschooling her own children who have learning differences. She is currently enrolled in a doctoral program at Lesley University with dissertation topics in metacognition, classroom discourse, and effective learning strategies. She has worked for over 20 years as a teacher and tutor in many different learning environments and enjoys adapting teaching strategies to fulfill diverse student needs.
Middle School Math Teacher
Deann Reyes-Wangh has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice Studies with an emphasis in mathematics from Arizona State University and is currently enrolled in a Masters of Education program with a focus on middle school math at Cambridge College. Most recently, Deann taught math at the Waldorf School of Garden City in Garden City, NY. Deann has 10+ years of teaching experience in middle school math. Growing up, Deann was an avid soccer player and continued her love for the sport at the college level. She now thoroughly enjoys coaching soccer and softball. Deann resides in Beverly with her wife and 2 children. Deann will teach middle school math starting in September 2018.
Science in Nature Coordinator, Assistant to the Administrators, Camp Director
Coleen received her bachelor degree in History from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst, and has extensive training in science and natural history. Through her time at Boston University Sargent Center for Outdoor Education, Program directing for Blue Sky Meadow Science Institute in Big Bear City in California, and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, Coleen’s expertise enlightens her hands-on inquiry-based science lessons here at Moraine Farm. Her most recent experience as curator of educational programs for the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens and her ongoing work in Zimbabwe as a Workshop Facilitator and Curriculum Writer for the Children in Wilderness program, bring a dimension of insight and creativity to our Science in Nature programming. This year Coleen has 2 periods weekly with each class where she brings hands-on experiential lessons that supplement and enhance the existing Waldorf curriculum.
Games and Movement Teacher
Alex graduated from Gordon College with a B.S. in Recreation Sports and Wellness and is currently getting a masters degree in Athletic Administration at Endicott College. Alex has coached and taught students at all levels from preschool to college. Before joining the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm, Alex taught at North Shore Christian School and was a basketball coach at St. John’s Prep. He also worked for the Beverly YMCA in the Afterschool and Sports programs. Alex is currently an assistant baseball coach at Gordon College.
First through Eighth Grade Instrumental Music Teacher
Ms. Marshunda Smith earned her Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Her time with the Oak Ridge High School Orchestra and her private cello studio made her realize that she wanted to work with kids. She attended the University of Southern Maine, receiving her Master’s degree in Orchestral Conducting with a concentration in Music Education. In 2018, Marshunda will be the first female to conduct the North Shore Philharmonic in its 70 year history. She co-founded and conducts the No-Name Orchestra and holds a private music studio of violin, viola cello students in the North Shore area. Marshunda has been teaching music and other non-musical classes at Waldorf since 2014.
Cyber Civics Teacher
Dirk Tiede graduated with a B.F.A. in Commercial Art from Millikin University and has worked as a professional illustrator, independent comic book creator, web designer & developer, animator, video editor, musician, and lecturer throughout his career. He brings 25 years of experience with the internet as a media creator to the Cyber Civics program. He began teaching at the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm as a middle school elective instructor and substitute and is a certified Cyber Civics instructor.
Middle School Language Arts Teacher
Amanda received her B.A. in English from Yale University and her MAT in Secondary English from Boston University. Before joining the Waldorf community, she taught English at Phillips Andover Academy and The Winsor School in Boston. A certified yoga instructor, Amanda loves to practice yoga, garden, travel and spend time with her family. She lives in Beverly with her husband and two daughters.
Middle School Science and Support Teacher
Vanya Yoors studied Environmental Education with the Audubon Expedition Institute and spent a year studying Tibetan language and collecting Tibetan folk songs in Nepal under a program sponsored by the University of Wisconsin. He then received his B.A. in Waldorf Education from The Rudolf Steiner College and taught for four years at the Eugene Waldorf School in Oregon. Mr. Yoors came to Waldorf School at Moraine Farm in 1996, and has spent many years as a class teacher and as a Movement Teacher. Last year, Vanya graduated the eighth grade class. This year Vanya will be supporting the school in various ways, including teaching science.
Lead Afternoon Teacher
Michael Mansur was a student at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm. Michael developed an interest in childhood education while working first as a substitute teacher in the early childhood classes. Michael then became a kindergarten class assistant at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm in 2016. Michael has studied Biodynamic Agriculture with Gunther Hauk at Spikenard Farm Honeybee Sanctuary and is currently studying for a degree in Education.
Daisy Nursery Assistant, Sweet Pea Program Assistant
Christine Garcia-Akers graduated with a degree in Fine Art from F.I.T and has an Associates in English Literature from Catholic University of America. She worked as a Fine Artist and elementary art teacher in New York City for several years before traveling to Mexico to study the language and culture. Upon returning she settled in Gloucester and worked as a children’s and reference librarian at the Sawyer Free Library. Christine became intrigued with Waldorf education when her children joined the early childhood classes. She has studied with master teachers from the Toronto Waldorf School, the Kimberton Waldorf School and Sophia’s Hearth.
Goldenstar Program Assistant
Madison Seligman attained her undergraduate degree from Gordon College and is pursing her Masters of Education at Plymouth University. Prior to Waldorf, Madison worked with La Vida at Gordon College where she facilitated activities and initiatives for all age groups. She is passionate about experiential learning and loves to see children learn from hands on experiences.Madison lives in Beverly and is excited to be starting her educational career at Waldorf School.
Caroline Horner earned her undergraduate degree at Hamilton College and her Masters from Lesley University with a focus on “Adolescent Education: Integrating Experiential Practices with a Traditional Classroom.” Caroline began her career teaching natural science and ecology at the Echo Hill Outdoor School and went on to become a 7th and 8th grade teacher, specializing in earth science, astronomy, meteorology and geology at North Yarmouth Academy in Yarmouth, Maine and Charles E. Brown Middle School in Newton Centre, MA. She has extensive experience in development, heading capital campaigns for private schools as well as working on several annual fund campaigns at Hamilton College, Phillips Academy, Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation and North Yarmouth Academy.
Caroline has served on several committees at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm, including the development committee, gardening committee, site committee as well as becoming board president in 2017. Caroline is passionate about gardening, Chinese history and art, Japanese literature, outdoor challenges and play. She has two daughters who currently attend WSMF.
Faculty Administrator and Middle School Math Teacher
Dianne received her BBA in Accounting from UMASS Amherst, an MS degree in Computer Information Systems from Bentley University, and an M.Ed. in Elementary Education. Over the years, Dianne has worked in public and private accounting firms and has held technical and managerial positions in companies such as General Electric Corporation and Sybase Corporation. She has been an adjunct instructor in computer information systems at Bentley University and Pace University. Involved in Waldorf education since 2004, Dianne was a class teacher for eleven years and more recently taught middle school math at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm and another local private school. Over the years, Dianne has been involved in various projects in both leadership and mentoring roles. Dianne and her husband have two college-age sons who graduated from Waldorf School at Moraine Farm.
Anita Haller-O’Neill has over 20 years of professional experience in leading youth-serving nonprofit organizations. She has managed and executed large community events, and has recruited, trained, supervised and supported thousands of program staff and volunteers in both in-school and after-school settings. Her experience developing and managing complex organizational budgets, crisis management systems, human resource operations and evaluation programs, brought her to her current position at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm..
Anita Haller-O’Neill received a bachelor’s degree in Recreation Management from the University of Nebraska. Before she became a full-time parent, she was the Co-Executive Director of Camp Fire USA, Eastern Massachusetts Council, where she spent 8 years. Before that, she spent time in leadership roles at a number of Girl Scout councils across the U.S.
Anita and her family have been a part of this community since Parent and Child classes in 2014. She has also served as Co-Chair of the Waldorf Community Association for two consecutive years.
Admissions and Marketing Director
Larissa holds a bachelor of science degree from Trinity College with a minor in art. She previously worked for New York ad agencies, DMB&B and BBDO in media planning and public relations. She worked as a Senior Account Executive at the Ad Agency at Fidelity Investments in Boston for several years before starting a high-end apparel business that was featured in Elle, Traditional Home Magazine, INStyle, Elle Japan, Animal Fair, Chronicle, and Boston Magazine. She has extensive experience in blog writing and social media marketing. She has two children at the Waldorf School at Moraine Farm. Larissa attended The Pike School and Northfield Mount Hermon.
Jack Hogan brings more than twenty years of world-wide experience in the construction industry to the school. Prior to joining the school, Jack worked as a volunteer coordinator and site supervisor for Habitat for Humanity Greater Boston and as an energy advisor with a home energy solutions company. Jack was drawn to the school through his admiration for the Waldorf philosophy and how well it complements his family life. Jack was born and raised in Kilkenny, Ireland. He now lives in Beverly with his wife and two daughters, both of whom are students at the school.
Miriam Silva Preas
Admissions and Marketing Coordinator
Miriam Silva Preas received a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Information Technology from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. She worked in marketing and knowledge management for fourteen years with law firms, Wilmer Hale, Edwards Angell Palmer and Dodge, and Ropes and Gray. Miriam is bilingual, born and raised in Venezuela. Her professional background in marketing and interest to Waldorf education brought her to this position. Miriam has two children, both students at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm.
Rachel holds a bachelor of arts degree from the University of New Hampshire with a major in english. After participating in a French exchange program and living in France in high school and studying a semester at Cambridge University, she realized her love of travel and worked in the operations department in education travel for several years right after college graduation. She also worked in production at Simon & Schuster and then worked in sales at Robert Half.
Rachel has worked as a social media marketing consultant and blogger. Recently she created the first ever online fundraiser for a local preschool, achieving record breaking results. Rachel and her daughter Skylar attended Parent and Child classes at Waldorf School at Moraine Farm and enjoy all the community events.
Main Office Support, First and Second Grade Afternoon Teacher
Laura received her BFA from Tufts University and The Museum School of Fine Arts and for 30 years has worked in the clothing design and manufacturing industry.
She completed two courses of Foundation Studies in Anthroposophy and studied at Emerson College, England with master Waldorf teachers. Laura was a Co-Chair of the Waldorf Community Association, has served on various committees and has been a handwork assistant for 8 years.
Laura came to Waldorf School at Moraine Farm as a parent in 2002 and has volunteered and/or worked at the school in various positions since 2006. She enjoys yoga, gardening, all sorts of handwork and sailing with her family. Her son is a 2016 graduate from Waldorf School at Moraine Farm.
Main Office Support
Gretchen grew up in the Waldorf school community and has loved the education ever since. She taught Kindergarten in a Waldorf-inspired charter school and worked in the non-profit world of educational support. Gretchen has two children who’ve attended this school.