Founding Director and Teacher
Amanda Hochschartner has both a BA and MEd in Early Childhood Education. She believes that children learn best in an experiential environment, and that deeper learning comes when they learn within the context of their towns and neighborhoods. As a teacher she has worked in farm and garden, and field and forest settings. She has completed the Reggio Emilia training whereby children are encouraged to investigate their world through their senses and are empowered to take charge of their own learning. With Judy Kane she visited many Forest Kindergartens in Europe and co-wrote an article for Green Teacher Magazine about these programs. Amanda lives in Granby with her husband and young children.
Olivia Burke is a young creative individual with a passion for teaching children. Before taking time away for her daughter, she was pursuing a degree in early childhood education at Manchester Community College. Olivia has spent several years working with children, from infants to grade school age. She previously served as Director on Duty and Infant and Toddler Teacher at a local daycare. Her love for children comes from a desire to help young minds create and explore new ways to express themselves. As an artist, she is an expert at bringing imagination and fun into process oriented activities. She attended the Suffield High School agriscience program and is familiar with nature and wildlife. Olivia finds great value in spending time outdoors and believes in teaching young children the importance of taking care of our Earth.
Jessica Matrian (Jessie) enjoys teaching children and learning with and from them. She has an associates degree in Early Childhood Education from Mitchell College, and has worked in a daycare for ten years, working with a variety of ages from infants to school age. She enjoys teaching them how to creatively explore nature and the world around them. Jessie loves exploring nature and wildlife, she spends a lot of her time hiking in the woods with her dog Rivers. Jessie believes that if we take care of nature and wildlife they will take care of us in return.