Katie Swisher has been the Guide in the Ocean room class since it opened in January 2008. She is a Montessori child and the daughter of a Montessori teacher. She received an AMI Primary Diploma from the Montessori Institute Northwest in May of 2004 and her M.Ed. that summer from Loyola College in Maryland. She is a violinist/violist, and her B.A. focused on music with young children in the Montessori Primary setting. In the classroom, Katie is passionate about supporting children’s development as social human beings and inspiring each child’s love of life-long learning. Her other interests include gardening, cooking, hiking, camping, and enjoying time with her husband Mike.
I love being part of the Harmony community! Its inclusiveness and dedication to supporting the important work of childhood inspires me to foster independence and a love of learning in every child I meet. -Katie
Keinya Kohlbecker began at Harmony as a co-teacher in 2013. Her Montessori journey began in 2001, when she witnessed the pure joy of children moving freely with coordination and patience while working as a classroom assistant in Reno, Nevada. From that moment, she became interested in learning more about the Montessori Method. In 2005, Keinya received her Primary Diploma from the Montessori Northwest and a Master’s in Education from Loyola University. Keinya also earned a BA in Dance, with a minor in Sociology/Anthropology from Denison University in Ohio. In addition to working with children on the Primary level, she spent several years working with Montessori adolescents, teaching Humanities, writing and dance. Outside the Harmony community, Keinya enjoys taking dance classes, choreography, music, reading about historical events, the outdoors and most of all spending time with her husband Matt, her son Noah and her cat Bundle.
“Every child has the potential to become confident, compassionate and peaceful individuals at Harmony. It feels good to continue my Montessori journey with this wonderful school.” -Keinya
Laura Pilkington is very happy to be an Assistant in the Ocean Room at Harmony, where she joined the community in 2014. Laura first learned about Montessori by attending an Information Night at the Montessori Northwest (formerly Montessori Institute Northwest), where she was inspired to take the Assistants Course. After working for a year as an Assistant, she took her Primary teacher training at MNW and graduated in 2005, jointly earning her Master’s in Education from Loyola University. When she is not at Harmony, Laura serves as the part-time Executive Director of the Oregon Montessori Association, is a mom, a wife, and the enthusiastic caretaker of three chickens and a guinea pig.