Johanna was born and raised in the Bay Area. Her parents moved to California together as immigrants and Johanna quickly saw that education could provide the opportunities that her parents always dreamed of. Growing up with three sisters and a close circle of friends, Johanna learned the value of empathy and generosity. She wondered and cared deeply about the world around her, which lead her to travel the world, study abroad, and pursue a History degree at UC San Diego. It was there that Johanna worked in summer camps and in a recreation center and was inspired to begin a life-long career working with children. After graduating, she began work at a preschool and then attended UC Berkeley to learn more about child development in education and its role in Social Justice. After getting her Masters in Education, she taught in public schools for 7 years with the aim of creating a warm, positive learning environment that would foster life-long joyful learners. She loves being with family and friends, travel, hiking, gardening, yoga, reading, and working with kids.
Olivia is a native to California in the truest sense. She has lived in Northern California, Southern California, and the Bay Area. As an independent oldest sibling, she grew up riding bikes with the neighbors, playing hopscotch with friends, and she took theater, dance, and singing classes. At fifteen, Olivia worked at the YMCA, which sparked a life-long journey of working with children. She loved being the one consistent adult that the toughest kids could talk to and be able to count on. Being from a small town, Olivia realized that she was interested in exploring the world outside of her immediate experience. She went to UC San Diego and studied Human Development, studying abroad in Spain in her junior year. Meanwhile, she worked with preschoolers and as a nanny. Olivia quickly realized the inequities that lay in education, and decided to pursue a Masters degree at UC Berkeley to learn about the ways that she could reach every child in education. After 7 years in the classroom, she is excited to work with early learners. She enjoys being outside in the sun, and being around people.
Johanna and Olivia met in 2007 in the Developmental Teacher Education Master's Program at UC Berkeley's School of Education. It was immediately clear to both that they were like-minded hopeful educators. Over the last seven years, Johanna and Olivia worked in public schools in the Bay Area and collaborated in making their teaching equitable to all students. It was through their experience that they gained the tools needed to apply best practices for children. Just as they developed powerful relationships with their elementary school students, they continue to prioritize creating trusting relationships for the children in their care. Their mission continues to be to nurture children so they can be their smartest, strongest, and happiest selves.
Devin Lee grew up in Nevada and California, spending most of their childhood sinking their teeth into pockets of nature still left untamed, foraging wild terrain for fallen flower petals and shiny rocks to concoct the most fantastical potions. They grew up surrounded by healers, artists, single moms, immigrants, love practioners, survivors and activists. Devin graduated from San Francisco State University with Bachelors’ in Anthropology and Women & Gender Studies, identifies as queer and primarily practices their Hawaiian and Chinese cultures. Their identity, experiences, and experiences of their ancestors greatly influences Devin’s approach to childcare. Devin believes it is important for our youth to have a safer space to creatively explore their various identities and ancestors; while seeing their identities as unique and reflected in a larger community. Devin has been working with children professionally since 2016 and wants to continue facilitating safer spaces where our youth can create at the intersection of healing, social justice, and art.
Shiloh grew up in gorgeous Oakland, California. They have an older brother that they still love to dig in the dirt and ride bicycles with! Shiloh earned their Bachelors of Arts degree from San Francisco State University and is finishing up their Master’s degree in Special Education there, as well. Shiloh was a Paraprofessional for 3 years in an elementary Special Day Class, where they became even more inspired to learn from differently-abled learners. Shiloh truly believes that learning happens through our innate curiosities and relation to our environments and to one another. They are an active member of Veteran’s For Peace and seek every opportunity to teach to transgress oppressions.