QACP employs professional teachers who develop lesson plans and lead the classes. Teachers and parents alike share responsibilities within each class to ensure that children are engaged in learning and having fun.
A Parent Educator is also assigned to each class. These childhood experts observe the children and parents during the classes and offer guidance and support. In addition, Parent Educators lead discussions on a variety of related topics during the monthly parent meetings.
Main Classroom Teachers
Tamara grew up on the central coast of California where she spent lots of time outdoors collecting acorns, making forts under coyote brush and playing pretend while climbing trees. Tamara’s background is in Biology and Ecology. She has worked as a Restoration Ecologist, a Park Ranger and a researcher in a Genetics laboratory. However, her love of the natural sciences and children, led her to teach at several outdoor schools and finally to graduate school to get her teaching credential and Masters in Education. She taught middle school Life Science until she became a mother.
With her daughter, Tamara was involved in two Seattle area co-op preschools where she fell in love with the co-op model of community and education, as well as early childhood development and play. She has spent the last 6 years, working in her daughter’s classes, coaching, volunteering, substitute teaching and as the owner/head teacher at Wild Child Seattle, an outdoor education program. Her favorite things about teaching preschool are dance parties, tea and story time, being outside and playing!
When she is not playing at preschool, she is a hiker, a trail runner, a family biker, a bird watcher and an ultimate frisbee player.
Kris began teaching in California in 1999, as an elementary school teacher. Through her career she taught most of the grade levels 1-5th, a few combo classes, served as a resource specialist, and even taught at a private school in a one-room schoolhouse! In 2010 Kris moved from California to Seattle with her husband, and after her daughter, Harper, was born in 2011, spent a few years at home. In looking at different preschool options for Harper, Kris became interested in Montessori schools and began to work as a preschool assistant at Woodinville Montessori. After a few years as a preschool assistant Kris became certified in infant and toddler education. From there she was the co-lead teacher in a toddler classroom and loved every minute.
Once Harper turned 5 and was ready to start Kindergarten, Kris chose to stay home with her for a few years. Kris joined QACP in 2018 and is beloved by children and caregivers alike!
Monica has been teaching for over 25 years: first by teaching folks how to sing, and then later fell in love with teaching Co-op! She has a Bachelor’s of Music from the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, as well as a Master’s in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy from Roosevelt University. She, along with her two children, participated in cooperative preschool for 7 years before becoming a teacher. Monica designs the curriculum and helps manage the classroom activities, and circle time is her specialty. She is very tuned-in with each and every student and allows for class flexibility based on each student’s abilities and energies. Kids love her Huggy-Boo!
Teaches: Threes/Fives Enrichment
QACP was thrilled to welcome Nanci Murphy, a Co-op alum, as a teacher in 2017.
Nanci grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, and attended Tufts University in Boston, where she graduated with a degree in Child Area Studies and German. Nanci is a certified teacher in Nursery through 3rd grade. She taught kindergarten and pre-kindergarten classes in Cali, Colombia after graduating college. Upon returning to the States, she attended a post-baccalaureate science program at the University of Pennsylvania while deciding whether to continue teaching or to pursue medical school. Teaching won her heart and she decided to continue working with children in a school setting.
After moving to Seattle, Nanci taught an enrichment program for kindergartners for two years at Kimball Elementary School, a Seattle Public School on Beacon Hill. She also taught kindergarten and then second grade for five years in the Seattle Public Schools District.
After the birth of her first daughter, Nanci decided to stay home with her children. Her three daughters and friends have provided many teaching opportunities. She also spent numerous hours in classrooms assisting and tutoring at Coe Elementary.
Nanci lives in Queen Anne with her husband, Erik, and their three daughters. The family attended QACP for nine years. At the time, Nanci thought that teaching at the co-op would be a great job, but life was busy with volunteering at the elementary school, coaching, and leading Girl Scout troops.
When a teaching position at the co-op opened up, with her girls growing up, Nanci thought this was her opportunity to join the staff of a place that has meant so much to her and her family. She feels honored to be entrusted with the care of these children. It is her joy to watch their wonder and pride as they learn and create. She thinks singing silly songs and dancing every day is awesome too.
Jamie grew up in Orange County CA. She attended UC Berkeley for undergraduate studies in Psychology and then completed her doctorate in Special Education in a joint program between UC Berkeley and San Francisco State University. Her research focused on parenting and home-school partnerships in the context of disability. She has experience in educational research as well as in teacher education through credential programs in the California State Universities.
She and her family recently moved to Bellevue WA. Jamie has three children who have been involved in cooperative preschools in California and her youngest attended cooperative preschool when they moved to Bellevue.
Jamie strongly believes in the importance of family involvement especially in early childhood. She emphasizes research-based practices and inclusive education. Jamie very much enjoys working with young children and their families and is looking forward to contributing to the QACP community.
Kristina is originally from Buffalo, NY but has lived in Seattle now for 14 years. She moved here to pursue her masters in Social Work from UW and and found that rain beats snow any day so she never left! Since graduating she has worked in public child welfare and as an elementary school social worker for almost 8 years. Serving a diverse community she saw first-hand the benefits of developing strong school-family partnerships as well as the value of early learning. Her passions include promoting equity and encouraging social-emotional learning. Working as a parent educator in preschools as well as a local homeless shelter has allowed her to continue this work and to partner with amazing parenting communities like QACP!
Kristina believes at its core the goal of parent education is to build skills around positive discipline and a network of support along the way. She is here to serve as a resource to help facilitate that. Kristina has enjoyed participating in the co-op system with her own three year old son and five year old daughter and is looking forward to collaborating with your family this year!
Please note: QACP Teachers and Parent Education Instructors must follow the mandated abuse reporting laws of the State of Washington regarding the reporting of child abuse and neglect. QACP members are encouraged to inform the teacher or parent education instructors of their concerns or observations.