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Our Class Guides

Mrs. Tatiana Ilmova  

      Head of School
 

Degrees and Experience

 

Tatiana Ilmova is one of the founders who worked hard to open Isla Montessori School in 2018. As a person with a background in Psychology, Tatiana has always admired the Montessori method of education. All her kids always attended Montessori schools. 

 

Being an active promoter of Montessori education, Tatiana believes in the mission and values that Isla Montessori School carries out into the island community. In 2022 Tatiana completed AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) course for Administrators.  

 

 

Tatiana is the mother of three beautiful daughters who are 19 years old, 10 years old, and 3,5 years old (two of them were born on Saipan). Tatiana and her family have lived on Saipan since 2009. She has two master's degrees – her first master's degree with honor is in Psychology and the second is in International Relations. In 2012, she established and led to success the First Russian School – a language school teaching Russian language, culture, and the history of Russia to students of any age and level. In 2021 her language school signed a contract with the Saint-Petersburg State University which will provide students an opportunity to get a certificate from one of the biggest state universities in Russia as a recognition of their level of Russian language mastery on an international level.  

 

Dedication to the local Community

 

Since Tatiana moved to Saipan in 2009 all her life has been related to this beautiful Island! During these years Tatiana has been an active member of the island community. She has served terms as a Board of Directors member of two non-profit schools. She is currently an active member of the Saipan Soroptimists Organization.

 

Tatiana regularly participates in local festivals such as the Flame Tree Festival and the Taste of Marianas Festival with her artworks (Mosaic from ceramic tiles, crochet toys, and jewelry).

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Children are my favorite humans. I enjoy their energy, passion, sense of humor, inquisitiveness, and high morals. I love being their guide and helping them become the best version of themselves, not only academically, but socially and emotionally as well. The foundation of my classroom is always based on kindness,  respect, and being responsible for your choices.

I have my Bachelor of Science in Business Management, but I received that after many years of taking a plethora of classes trying to figure out “what I wanted to be when I grew up.” When I found Montessori, I knew it was what I was searching for all along. Maria Montessori said that guides should be a jack of all trades and a master of none. After learning this, I was happy that I took all those courses! I received my AMI Montessori training from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta. I have over 10 years of experience in Montessori. I have had the privilege to work in primary, lower elementary, and upper elementary classrooms. I started my Montessori journey in my daughter’s school as the garden teacher where I guided the children to independently care for the garden, our chickens, and the wildlife. I then taught botany classes to the upper elementary students. After I received my Montessori Certification, I taught lower elementary for 4 years and then moved on to teach upper elementary. I feel very privileged to be on this journey with so many amazing little humans and am beyond thrilled to continue it at Isla Montessori School.

Ms. Kimberly Morgan

       Elementary Program Guide / School Principal

I am a philosopher of life, a wanderer of the world, a lover of nature, a friend to all animals, and a lifelong learner.  My father was in the Navy which allowed me to live in many different places. One of my favorite places was Guam. I was very young, but it left such an impression that I still have vivid memories that fill my soul with peace and happiness.

Coming to teach in Saipan feels like I am coming home in a way, and I am so honored and grateful to be a part of Isla Montessori’s community. Being a Montessori guide is not just a career but my mission and my small way I can make a positive impact in our world now and in the future.

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Ms. Elizabeth Wimpey 

       Children's House Guide

 

Degrees and Experience

As a young adult, I needed an afternoon job, so I applied for and got a position as an assistant in a Montessori School in the countryside. Education was not my course of study in college, but I immediately fell in love with this beautiful environment and method of education. The parents of the children liked me, and I received quite a bit of encouragement to do my Montessori training.  The parents collaborated and got me a scholarship to do my AMI training at the center of my choice.  I choose to study with Dr. Rita Schaefer as I had friends and colleagues who had been trained by Dr. Schaefer, and they all had excellent training. I graduated from the program at the Association Monterssori International Training Center in 1987.

 

In 1996, I joined the staff at the International School of Tianjin and began the very first Montessori program in Tianjin, China.  While at IST I had many opportunities to grow as a professional. I worked closely with the lower elementary teachers improving and increasing my skills in the Language area of the classroom.  I received annual in-house training to develop my proficiency teaching English as a Second Language.  I attended training and became an International Baccalaureate Early Childhood Educator.  

 

I have worked with children from many different cultures, and I have learned from all of these experiences. 

 

Ms. Leikita Ilesugmal S. Maliuyaf

       Children's House Co-Teacher 

Ms. Lei was born and raised here on the island of Saipan. She is currently a student at Northern Marianas College and pursuing an associate's degree in Liberal Arts with an emphasis in Social Work. She aspires to be a future child specialist. Ms. Lei joined Isla Montessori in 2022 as a teacher assistant and grew to co-teacher for Children's House. In March 2023 she completed Montessori Early Childhood Teacher Training Program from NAMC (North American Montessori Center) and received her Diploma.  

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Ms. Akari Esteves 

       Children's House Teacher Assistant

With a diverse cultural background and a passion for education, I am thrilled to bring my organizational skills and drive for learning to the Montessori family. As a woman of Japanese and Chamorro descent holding an associate's degree in liberal arts, I have a unique perspective to share with students. My educational foundation paired with my natural work ethic ensures I can help cultivate curious, capable young minds. I look forward to making a positive impact as part of the Montessori team.

Ms. Christy Aldan

       Children's House Teacher Assistant

 

Ms. Christy was born and raised here on the Beautiful Island of Saipan. She is pursuing her Associate of Applied Science in Criminal Justice and a Liberal Arts degree with an emphasis in Social Work. Since she joined Isla Montessori in 2023, her passion for teaching our children has grown.  Ms. Christy's deep understanding of the Chamorro culture within the CNMI has made her an invaluable asset to the program. Her dedication to lifelong learning in education reminds her that learning is a continuous journey, and seeking knowledge regardless of age or stage in life can be tremendously fulfilling.

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Ms. Noreen Ashley S. Angui

       Substitute Teacher 

My name is Noreen Ashley S. Angui. I graduated from Northern Marianas College in 2020 with an associate degree in Liberal Arts. I am currently a substitute teacher at Isla Montessori. I started working at Isla Montessori during the summer of 2022. When I heard and read about Montessori it changed my perspective towards education because throughout my life I had been in the Public School System. We had to follow a strict curriculum-based traditional learning. Montessori is based on self-activity, hands-on learning, and collaborative play. Dr. Maria Montessori said, “The education of even a small child, therefore, does not aim at preparing him for school, but for life”. I’ve learned that Montessori education recognizes that children learn in different ways and it also encourages them to learn at their own pace. Children are able to decide what their focus of learning will be in either one of the five studies: practical, sensorial, mathematics, language, and culture. I have learned that children learn best with hands-on projects. The children are a part of a close, caring community. The older children become role models and mentors to the younger children. This helps them feel supported and gain self-confidence about the challenges ahead. Since then, I’ve learned what a prepared environment should look like; how our body language and tone of voice can affect a child, etc. My goal as a teacher is to observe each child and what work interests him/her the most; make learning joyful; motivate and encourage their curiosity for learning, etc. I hope that one day Montessori education can expand more in the CNMI because I believe that it will benefit children to grow into responsible, independent people; and have a lifelong love of learning. 

Be Part of an Authentic Montessori Team

Isla Montessori offers a qualty authentic Montessori education that also specializes in the two primary island cultures, Chamorro and Carolinian.

At this time, there are no current positions available at Isla.  However, if you think you might want to be part of a passionate and dedicated team, please submit your resume and a cover letter along with 3 references.  We will keep your information on file for future consideration.  These documents can be emailed to us at info@islamontessori.org.

We look forward to hearing from you!

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