Improving quality of life for the differently abled Children & Adults

Teachers

CHERYL HUSS – ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHER, cherylh@laurensinstitute.org

I have recently moved to Arizona from Michigan to be closer to my 27 year old daughter.  I also have a 22 year old son.  In September I will graduate from Grand Canyon University receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Educational Studies.  In October I begin a Master’s program in special education.  I have an Associate’s degree in business management that I received from Monroe County Community College.

I bring to L.I.F.E. over 15 years of working with children with different abilities and levels.  I have certification in First Aid/CPR, Foundations of ASD Educational Strategies, Therapeutic Crisis Intervention, Stewards of Children, Dealing with the Problem Child and Drums Alive.

JULIE ROTH – ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHERjulier@laurensinstitute.org

Julie has been married for 28 years and is a mom of  5 wonderful children and a Grandmother to four amazing grandchildren.  Julie has been working with children for most of her married life in either educational settings, care giving and or through volunteer service.

Julie led a pre-school classroom while living in Las Vegas for 5 years.  The age range was 3 – 5 years old.  Julie also worked in the HIgley School District in the special education preschool for 2 ½ years.  Julie has been trained in Handwriting Without Tears, Get Set For School along with the curriculum used here at LIFE.

KELLY MORALES - ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHERkellym@laurensinstitute.org

Kelly Morales has been married for 30 years and has 4 children. Kelly has been in the teaching field for 16 years. Kelly has run a state certified daycare for 11 years, been the lead teacher of a 1 year old preschool classroom before finding her home within the area of special needs.

Kelly started doing community habilitation with families before being promoted to a Lead therapist where she had a case load of new diagnosed young Autistic children where Kelly would set up and monitor a home program for habilitation goals for the families to work on.

Kelly has been with LIFE since they opened their doors and loves being employed there. Kelly currently is the lead teacher of the pre k / k classroom. Kelly and her staff serve children with a variety of needs. Kelly has training in many different areas which include: sign language, PECS (picture exchange program), using Aug-com devices, ABA(applied behavior Analysis) discrete trial teaching, completion of ABA videos and testing, PRT(pivotal response teaching), teaching through play, Brain gym, Hand writing without Tears, plus many years of hands on experience with special needs children.

NICOLE RAPP- ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHERnicoler@laurensinstitute.org

My name is Nicole Rapp and I am a teacher of exceptional students at Lauren’s Institute For Education (LIFE).  I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Studies from Arizona State University in 2009. Two years later, I completed my Master’s Degree in Special Education, with an emphasis on Autism. This is my first year of teaching students with special needs. I have had the privilege of teaching at LIFE since June of 2012 and truly enjoy every single day here!

My teaching philosophy is based on respecting differences, tapping into talents, and sharing my love for learning with my students. I believe we all have something to contribute and I learn so much from the students each day. I use a multi-sensory, theme based instruction in the classroom and believe in a consistent, positive and respectful approach to making lasting learning!

STARLLA DURAN – ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHER, starllad@laurensinstitute.org

Starlla has enjoyed working with children with developmental disabilities since 1997 and will continue to strive for the best comprehensive treatment there is available. She has completed her education with a Master’s degree in Special Education, certification in Early Childhood Intervention and coursework for becoming a certified Behavior Analyst. She has incorporated teaching methods such as; Discreet Trial Training (DTT) and Natural Environment Teaching (NET), all while using Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) principles in home programs as well as school settings. For the past six years, she has worked in homes for children on the autism spectrum assessing, implementing, and training therapists and parents on the child’s individual skill outcomes specific to skill deficits and problematic behavior.

Starlla has been married for close to 19 years with two children (17 and 7), one dog, and one cat. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, going for family bike rides, and completing projects as a family of artists. She enjoys cold weather more than hot, but has become accustomed to the Arizona heat after living here for 12 years.

TANYA GRUNTORAD – ACADEMY SUPERVISOR/TEACHER,tanyag@laurensinstitute.org

I received my bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Northern Arizona University and subsequently received my Master’s degree in special education from the same University.  I have been teaching for nine years and specializing in special education for 8.  I have worked in public education since 2004, and am very excited to be joining the L.I.F.E. family.  I have a 19 year old daughter, who is attending my alma mater on a full academic scholarship, and a 4 year old son.

 

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