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Staff Bio’s


Patience Schutrumpf

Patience Montessori was born out of a lifelong passion for children. After a stint in IT, Patience switched to childcare and re-discovered her calling. During an internship at a Montessori School for her director training, her belief and confidence in the Montessori Method was cemented. She saw that children are significantly more advanced, balanced, better at interacting with others and, as adults, more successful in life. With her son Alaric as the first student, Patience is now living her dream of running a Montessori school. Patience Montessori is run, first and foremost, the way any discerning parent wants their child nurtured and educated. In addition, Patience is providing the Boulder community with a quality, multicultural childcare center that provides for children ages 6 weeks to 6 years. When Patience has a moment to herself she enjoys spending time with her family and relaxing with a good book.

Amy Haywood

Amy Haywood
Musicare Instructor

Ms. Amy, singer, storyteller, writer, and mother of two, grew up in Asia and sang in bands throughout high school. She has two degrees in Education and English Literature with a minor in Music from Guilford College. She has been teaching Musicare since 1987. In 1999, Amy and four other Musicare instructors created Camp Oonie Koonie Cha, an early childhood music camp in Winston-Salem. Musicare and Camp OKC, nourish Amy’s profound interest in children. Amy and her music partner, Claire Valine, have won two Parents’ Choice Awards for children’s music recordings. They have five works in total. Amy resides and teaches in Boulder, Colorado. She is working on publishing “Miss Ellie”, the story from her “Rockin in the Rabbit Hole” CD.

Miss Laura
Musicare Instructor

Laura graduated from the University of Denver with a Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Music Performance. In addition to teaching Musicare and Music Together, Laura is a member of St. Martin’s Chamber Choir and Harmonia and performs regularly with these groups. She recently completed her Orff Certification Level 1 and is excited to bring some new ideas into her teaching. Laura loves experiencing music as part of her everyday life, and is delighted that she can share this experience with your children.

Manuela Curtis
Lead Teacher – Nido Classroom

Manuela was born and raised in Germany. Being the oldest of five siblings, young children have always been a big part of her life. While primarily living in Europe, Manuela and her husband (an American citizen) raised their seven children bilingual, and as a family contributed to their local Bavarian community by founding a Baseball team, and organizing daily vacation activities for children of all ages for the past 10 summers. From 1984 until 2003, Manuela was a stay-at-home Mom, and in addition provided licensed daycare to infants and toddlers at their house in Germany. When their youngest son started school, she decided to independently teach English to Kindergarten children, which she has done successfully until they relocated to Colorado recently. As part of an integration program Manuela also tutored Non-German children, and has experience in after-school supervision of Elementary School students. Manuela earned her Assistants to Infancy Diploma with Montessori Europe, and is excited to contribute to the care, education, social development and ultimately to the happiness and achievements of the children here at Patience Montessori.

Kimberly Subulski
Lead Teacher – Wobbler Classroom

The vast majority of Kimberly’s 15 years of experience working in early childhood education programs she has spent at NEYC accredited schools. She is passionate about working with this age group because she believes this is when the child strives for independence and self-mastery. As an early childhood educator, she believes, it is her job to provide a setting that allows for this while meeting each child’s individual needs. In her free time she enjoys reading, practicing yoga, playing the guitar, drawing, painting, mountain biking, snowboarding, and backpacking.

Athena Dubois
Lead Teacher – Primary Classroom

Miss Athena joins us from Lyons Community Montessori, where she has been a lead teacher in their Primary Room for the past four years. Prior to her work at Lyons Community Montessori, Miss Athena taught at Central Elementary and Spengler Elementary School in Longmont. Miss Athena is an AMS-certified Montessori teacher, and is group-leader qualified. Miss Athena spent 14 years in Holland and is fluent in Dutch. Her multicultural background combined with her passion for children makes her a strong and effective teacher here at Patience Montessori School. During her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family.

Dawn Mitchell
Floater – All Classrooms

Dawn’s first profession of thirty three years was massage therapy working with adults and autistic children. Subsequently she decided to become a yoga teacher and has thoroughly enjoyed this avenue of her life. She is currently a yoga teacher and is also studying to work with primary aged children. When she retires she would like to eventually have a school of her own in Boulder County in which she envisions having gardens and a fish pond.

Her favorite sound is waves and children laughing in the back ground. She says that “when you hear this, you know all is right with the world.”

Paula Viera Leberknight
Lead Teacher – Mini Classroom

Born in Brazil, Paula came to the United States in 1992 and attended two years of intensive English at the International English Center in Boulder, Colorado. In 2007, she became a citizen of the United Sates. Paula started her teaching career in Brazil where in 1989 she became a certified teacher for instructing children from 1st – 4th grade. In 2005, she became a certified Montessori teacher through the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder. Paula is also a Spanish instructor for young children, and has taught Spanish at the Primary and Elementary level as well as privately. Paula is one class away from acquiring her director’s qualification from CCD . She has traveled to 18 countries, and strives to bring a multicultural perspective to her work and life. During her free time, she enjoys traveling, rollerblading, yoga, meditation, playing guitar and creating handmade materials to teach children.

Ann Harding
Lead Teacher – Mini Classroom

Ann was born in Alaska and traveled all over the western states as a child, When she was twenty she began working as a nanny in Montana and discovered the Montessori Method. The next year she took her training through Caspari Montessori Institute. After completing her internship at Twin Pines Montessori in Livingston, Montana, she continued teaching there for the next three years. She also taught five Kindermusik classes for children from six months to seven years. In 2008 she moved back to Colorado to be closer to family and get a Bachelor’s degree at Naropa University. In October of 2012 she traveled to Ireland and studied with Liz Weir, an international storyteller. She is also a musician and weaves story and song together to create unique and entertaining storytelling events and workshops for all ages.

Lindzy Ruttenbery
Assistant Teacher – Mini Classroom

Lindzy was born and raised in Chicago land, but promptly moved to Colorado immediately after graduating high school. Lindzy went to the University of Colorado, Boulder where she obtained BA’s in both Art History and Religious Studies. She has been teaching athletics for over ten years, having spent three years teaching snowboarding professionally at Keystone and Arapahoe Basin. She has also taught waterskiing, wakeboarding, and figure skating to the young and young at heart. Only recently has Lindzy decided to leave the world of athletic instruction and pursue qualifications in Early Childhood Education. Lindzy spends the bulk of her free time at the ice rink, working for a local Jewish non-profit, or with her dog, Banjo.

Brooke Curcuri
Floater/Assistant Teacher

Born and raised in Grosse Pointe, MI, she moved to Boulder last year to open a new outdoor retail store. After five years in outdoor retail and being a nanny for a family with four children, she decided it was time to pursue her dream of teaching children. With a BFA degree in graphic design and photography, she knows how important creativity and art are for a child’s development. She plans to continue her studies in early childhood education and art education this spring, with the hope of leading her own class one day. When she’s not drawing, painting or snapping photos, you can find her outside rock climbing, mountain biking or snowboarding.

Susan Halkin
Assistant Director

Susan is pleased to be a part of the Patience Montessori Family. She comes with years of experience as a director and also as a classroom teacher. She lives in Longmont with her husband Paul and their “beagle boy” Buddy. She has two grown children. Susan received her education in Illinois and has taught and directed in Illinois, New York and Colorado. She is an AMS certified director. Susan enjoys small children, traveling, rock collecting and hiking.

Diana Vilar

Diana Vilar’s has fully embraced Maria Montessori philosophy and is currently an internship student of early childhood development at Montessori Educational Center of the Rockies in Boulder, Colorado. Her educational background includes child psychology and her upbringing in Puerto Rico brings unique perspective when working with children and shapes her emphasis while teaching lessons. She is a native Spanish speaker and has taught Spanish for many years. On a sunny day she is out climbing, boating, and adventuring through Colorado’s wild places with her daughter Fabiola.

Julia DeFilippi
Office Manager/Floater

Julia grew up in Dubuque, Iowa. She received a BA in Political Science from Florida State University. She then moved to Boulder and soon started a family. She was a stay at home for many years before going to work for BVSD. She has worked for the school district in many different capacities over the years and has found that her favorite thing is being with young children, which is what brought her to Patience Montessori. She plans to eventually return to graduate school to study Library Science and become an elementary school librarian. In her free time she enjoys yoga, hiking, camping, learning to play guitar, and spending time with her 2 children, 2 dogs and one cat.