Our Montessori-trained infant and toddler teachers form close bonds with the children, encouraging the development of language and body awareness through movement and exploration. Meet our Livonia child care teachers.
- Ms. Barbara joined the Brookfield Staff in October 2014. She has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Child Development from Madonna University, and anticipates completing her Master’s Degree in Child Development in December 2017. She also has a Montessori Toddler Teacher credential. She has experience working in public schools and in early learning centers for the past 14 years and has been a Lead Teacher and an Early Learning Community Assistant and Quality Improvement Specialist with previous employers.
- Ms. Jenny has an associate degree in early childhood education from Oakland Community College and a bachelor’s degree in computer science from The University of Windsor. She has prior experience working with other preschool and child care providers and most recently, worked for Bright Horizons in San Francisco before returning to live in Michigan. Ms. Jenny enjoys cooking in her free time.
- Ms. Tessa Ernst-Meyer became part of our team of Brookfield Staff on March 7, 2016. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Child Development from Union Institute and University in Ohio and has been teaching since 2015. Before become a permanent member of our team, Ms. Tessa was a frequent substitute teacher in our building. She loves teaching children because they have such imagination and potential; and she works to apply her academic understanding to daily classroom experiences, meeting children where they are in their development to support them as they grow. Her favorite children’s book is, My Many Colored Days, by Dr. Seuss. In her spare time she loves to crochet, bike with her family and to bake.
Preschool / Pre-Primary Teachers
Our Montessori-certified preschool or pre-primary teachers help children build and master important skills at critical periods – the moment they are most sensitive to acquiring a new skill or concept. Meet our Livonia preschool teachers.
- Ms. Renuka Cramer joined Brookfield Academy as a lead preschool and kindergarten teacher in August 2016. She came to us with over 25 years of Montessori teaching experience. Ms. Renuka holds an elementary A.M.I. Montessori credential from Hershey Montessori Training Institute in Avila, Indiana, and a primary A.M.I. credential from Good Shepherd Maria Montessori Training Center in Colombo 7, Sri Lanka. In her free time Ms. Renuka enjoys reading, music, gardening and baking.
- Ms. Amy Seykell is a Lead Preschool Teacher and Associate Toddler Teacher. She has an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Development with over 15 years of experience working with children, with over five of those years being at Brookfield Academy Livonia. She has served as a lead preschool teacher for Bright Horizons and as a Club Brookfield Director, Lead Infant and Toddler Teacher and Infant and Toddler Program Coordinator for Brookfield Academy. In her free time Ms. Amy loves to read, go on walks or hikes, watch movies, and to spend time with her husband, son and family.
- Ms. Maleka joined our staff as a substitute teacher in 2015. She became the Associate Teacher in Ms. Amy’s classroom on January 18, 2016. She has an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education from The University of Bombay, India and many years of previous experience as an associate teacher in other Montessori programs. She was a frequent substitute teacher for Brookfield where she demonstrated an excellent understanding of Montessori and excellent skill in using Montessori materials to support the lead teacher in a classroom. She is very calm and nurturing with our students. In her free time she enjoys cooking for her family, working on the computer, sewing and crafts.
Our highly trained elementary school teachers combine high expectations for children with hands-on, challenging, and engaging materials in an environment designed to foster academic success and social skills. Meet our Livonia elementary school teachers.
- Ms. Uma Gopalakrishnan is a Lead Elementary Teacher in our lower elementary classroom. She has a Master’s Degree in Science from The University of Bombay, India and her Montessori Credentials for Preschool and for Lower Elementary. She is also a teacher trainer at the Montessori Teacher Training Institute in Adrian, Michigan. Ms. Uma has been teaching Montessori classrooms since 2006 and joined the Brookfield Academy Livonia Campus in 2011. In her free time she enjoys gardening, travelling, camping and reading.
- Ms. Jennifer Hunsaker joined Brookfield Academy Livonia Campus in August 2016 as a co-lead teacher in our lower elementary classroom. Ms. Hunsaker teaches the language arts segments of our curriculum. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education with a language arts endorsement. Ms. Hunsaker comes to Brookfield with previous teaching experience in elementary classrooms. Ms. Hunsaker enjoys having a cat named, Nova. She also enjoys reading, tennis and scrapbooking.
- Mrs. Kimberly Swistara joined Brookfield Academy Livonia Campus in August 2016 as a co-lead teacher in our upper elementary classroom. Mrs. Swistara teaches the math and science segments of our curriculum. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education with science and social studies endorsements. Mrs. Swistara comes to Brookfield with previous teaching experience in elementary classrooms and Director experience in a science education program in Florida. Mrs. Swistara also enjoys swimming and rowing, both as an athlete and as a coach.
- Mr. John Toth is a Lead Upper Elementary Teacher. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education from Oakland University in Rochester Hills, Michigan. Mr. Toth was new to Brookfield Academy in 2013 following two prior years of classroom teaching experience. He also has high school coaching experience. Mr. Toth loves sports, especially baseball. In his spare time he loves to play sports, coach sports, and to spend time with family and friends.
Club Brookfield Teachers
Club Brookfield teachers are sensitive to the social and emotional needs of children during before- and after-school times and school vacation days. They provide a safe, consistent atmosphere that ensures nurturing experiences for each child. Meet our Livonia before & after school teachers.
- Ms. Angie is the Club Brookfield Director. She has an associate degree in early childhood development from Schoolcraft Community College in Michigan. She has 16 years of experience in child care, three of which have been spent at Brookfield Academy. Her passion is working with children and she also enjoys scrapbooking, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
Enrichment & Extracurricular Activities Teachers
Enrichment teachers and coaches foster children’s desires for new challenges and opportunities that celebrate their expanding world. Meet our Livonia enrichment & extracurricular activities teachers.
- Mr. Karagosian is a 2012 graduate of Western Michigan University with a B.S. Degree in Education and Human Development. He is certified to teach Physical Education/Coaching and Health Education. Mr. Karagosian has previous teaching experience in public schools, charter schools and at a Montessori school in Mt. Clemens, MI. He is currently also the Assistant Varsity Football Coach at Waterford Kettering High School. We are very pleased to have him join the Brookfield Family at both the Livonia Campus and at the Rochester Hills Campus.
- Mr. Warren attended Oakland Community College and Mid-Michigan College in Lansing, Michigan. He also is a graduate of The Fire Academy and is a certified paramedic. Kyle has worked for Brookfield Academy Troy both as an associate teacher in child care and as a summer camp counselor. He is married and has a dog named, Luna. Mr. Warren is passionate about computer technology and enjoys spending time with his family, friends and Luna.
- Mr. Bob is the director of music at Brookfield Academy. He has been a music educator for the last 18 years, 12 of which have been spent at Brookfield. Mr. Bob has a bachelor’s degree in music education from Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Alabama. Prior to becoming a teacher, Mr. Bob served as an Aviation Operations Specialist in the United States Army. He enjoys mountain biking, hiking, playing the trumpet, watching his hometown Pittsburgh sports teams, and spending time with family and friends, his wife Martha, and their two cats, Colin and Ringo.
- Mrs. Ruth is a professional, dedicated, native Spanish teacher with 8 years of classroom experience. She has a Bachelor of Science from Instituto Tecnologico de Parrall and Centro de Educacion Artistica in Chihuahua, Mexico. Mrs. Ruth is new to Brookfield this school year, 2013-2014, and has developed a wonderful relationship with her students and families.
- Ms. Cori is Art teacher. In the past she has been the Club Director/Summer Camp Director at the Troy Campus. She has worked at Brookfield Academy since 2008. She studied fine art at Adrian College and continues to paint, draw, and create in her free time. She loves being a positive part of each child’s day.
School administrators uphold the Montessori mission to provide children with an individualized education that helps them achieve academic success. They work hand in hand with their faculty and families to nurture each child’s individual, unique potential. Meet our Livonia school administrators.
- Mrs. Karen has been a part of the Brookfield Academy team since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Oakland University in Rochester Hills, Michigan. In addition, she has her Teaching Certificate from the state of Michigan and a Montessori Elementary I Teaching Credential. Prior to joining the Livonia campus as principal, Ms. Karen worked as a K-2, 2-4, and 3-5 elementary math, science, and geography teacher, assistant principal at the Troy campus, and principal of the West Bloomfield campus. Ms. Karen enjoys teaching, leading teachers, and guiding families through their children’s early education.
- Ms. Mary Jo has been with Brookfield Academy for nine years. She started as the physical education teacher at the Rochester Campus and has been the Business Manager at the Livonia Campus since it opened in 2009. Ms. Mary Jo is a graduate of Michigan State University where she studied both telecommunications and elementary education. She and her husband have four children, six grandchildren, a dog, a cat, and a tortoise. In her spare time, she enjoys aerobics, pottery, reading, and hiking.