Faculty & Staff
Our Faculty brings a wealth of training, experience, and dedication to our homelike classrooms every day. All of our teachers are trained professionals who have made Early Childhood Education their career. They are modern-day Mary Poppinses, skilled in the techniques of preventative discipline--creating ways to gently guide behavior through clear expectations and positive example. Even more important, our teachers are warm, loving people who care for each child as a special being.
GALE MORFIN, Lead Teacher, grew up on Long Island, received her bachelor’s degree at the University of Florida, and completed her Waldorf teacher training at the Rudolf Steiner College in Sacramento. As Lead Teacher at The Mountain School since 1994, Gale brings tremendous experience and expertise to the artistic process of caring for young children in the Hummingbird Nest. “When I first encountered Waldorf education,” she remarks, “I was stunned. It seemed to hold within it everything I wished I had experienced as a child.” Gale and her husband lived in Finland for four years where she taught preschool before coming to The Mountain School. For 2007-08 she spent a sabbatical year in Italy.
KIMI KEATING, Lead Teacher, received her bachelor’s degree in Art History from San Francisco State University and graduated from the San Francisco Waldorf Teacher Training in 1999. She was drawn to the depth and creativity of the Waldorf philosophy as well as to its highly sensible approach. “It nurtures intellectual development and wonder through activities that are practical and well thought through.” Kimi has been a classroom assistant in the Mill Valley public school system, Lead Teacher at a local home preschool, and Kindergarten apprentice at the San Francisco Waldorf School where she also taught Summer Kindergarten Camp. She joined The Mountain School in 2002 as Assistant Teacher, and in 2005 became Lead Teacher in the Chickadee Nest.
BRENDA NOVICK, Assistant Teacher, grew up in New Mexico and attended Dominican University before being introduced to Waldorf education while seeking schooling for her children. Drawn to its emphasis on nature, beauty and imagination, Brenda went on to graduate from the Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training and joined The Mountain School staff in 2009. She recently became a Certified Simplicity Parenting© Group Leader. Says Brenda, “Here, every activity, every action, every gesture, has meaning. In a world where we often rush, our children can still have a place to experience purpose and happiness in the everyday pursuits of life.”
LISA O'CALLAGHAN, Chickadee Assistant and Aftercare Co-Lead Teacher, grew up in San Francisco and Novato. She holds a degree from UC Davis with a major in Psychology and a minor in Education, and is a Certified Simplicity Parenting© Group Leader. In addition, she is a graduate of the Environmental Forum of Marin, an education and advocacy program, and enjoys studying dance and poetry. Prior to joining The Mountain School staff in 2011, she taught for four years at Garden's Nest preschool in Woodacre. “In Waldorf education,” she says, “I have found a home for myself, my son and my family. It is a joy to be able to share this education in such a warm, nurturing environment.”
REBECAH FREELING, Aftercare Co-Lead Teacher, is a new Californian and loving it! She received her Waldorf Early Childhood training in Detroit, Michigan, and for thirteen years was Owner, Director and Lead Teacher at Briar Rose Children’s Center in her home state of Ohio. Last year Rebecah was Early Childhood Lead Teacher at Berkeley Rose School in the East Bay. "The ability of the teacher to know herself, know the world, and know the children," she says, "is what brings magic to the classroom." She is a highly-regarded parent coach, a Certified Simplicity Parenting© Group Leader, and hosts Waldorf-style birthday parties for children. Rebecah loves kayaking, hiking and finding new places for outdoor adventures.