Goodland Montessori Square

Montessori Staff Bios


Learn more about some of our staff members.




Mrs. Anna

My name is Anna Steinke. I started my teaching career in 2002, after graduating from UW Stout. I got my degree in Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education. I have spent about half my career teaching kindergarten and the other half teaching special education. In the fall of 2018, I joined the RUSD Montessori team. I have loved learning the Montessori way while teaching special ed.

My husband, Mike and I live in Oak Creek with our son, Mason. We enjoy hanging out with family, and cheering on the Brewers, Bucks, and Packers. I enjoy baking, reading, and spending time outdoors.



Ms. Ami

Hello! My name is Ami Soni.  I graduated with my Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from Roosevelt University and I have received my 3-6 Montessori certificate from the Midwest Montessori Training Center in Illinois. I am currently working on receiving my Learning Behavior Specialist I (LBSI1) Endorsement from the University of Illinois-Springfield. 

I live in Illinois where I grew up.  When I am not teaching I enjoy shopping, traveling, and spending time with my family.  I am glad to share this wonderful year with you and would to like welcome everyone to the Montessori community! 



Ms. Baker

Greetings! My name is Danette Baker. I am looking forward to teaching lower elementary at RUSD Montessori at Goodland! I recently moved back to Wisconsin from Omaha Nebraska, where I taught Children’s House and lower and upper elementary over the past several years. 

In addition to holding a Nebraska teaching license, I hold Montessori certifications 0-3, 3-6, 6-9, and 9-12. I was introduced to Montessori after graduating from college and have taught following the Montessori philosophy for many years. I have two adult daughters, Shea, a Physician’s Assistant and Chantal, a nurse. I am an avid reader, knitter and quilter during my down time.



Ms. Beltz

Hello, my name is Michelle Beltz and I am new to RUSD! For the past six years I have taught in Milwaukee public schools at Craig Montessori, and I am excited to help expand Goodland’s Montessori program.

My undergraduate degree is in fine art and graphic design, so I enjoy promoting art in my classroom. I received my Montessori and early education degree in Milwaukee and since then I have been in love with teaching children independence, concentration, and helping them foster a love for learning.

Some fun facts about me. I have been happily married to Travis since 2016. We have two fur-babies (dogs) named Elphie and Rylee, who love to go for long walks and hide my socks. During my spare time I enjoy painting, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.

I believe it takes a community to raise a child and strongly encourage open communication, so feel free to chat with me!

“When a child comes to understand something it is not the end, but only the beginning.”
– Maria Montessori


Rachel Lochtefeld

Ms. Lochtefeld

Hello! I have been teaching since 1992 and in Montessori schools since 2011. I received my Elementary Certification (ages 6-12) from the Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center.  Over the years, I have taught dance, French, drama, and of course, Montessori.  I love being able to share  the pleasure of learning with my students!  I grew up in Seattle, WA. I earned my BA in International Studies from the University of Washington and my MA in Dance Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. My husband and I raised our three children in Kenosha. Now we share our home with our cat and our dog.




Ms. Dundore

Hello, my name is Ms. Dundore. Welcome to our new class!  I have been a Montessori teacher for 21 years.  I have my Master’s Degree from Northern Illinois University in Early Childhood Education.  My Montessori 3-6 Year Old training is from Seton Montessori Institute in Illinois.

I have two children who both attended Montessori schools and one brown doggie named Lily (who I like to think is also Montessori trained). My husband George is not Montessori trained, but makes my life easier so that I can do what I love best, which is to lead children to a lifetime love of learning and help parents learn about and bring Montessori into their home. I'm excited to be part of the Montessori expansion in Racine.



Mrs. Hochtritt

Hi, I'm Jasmyne Hochtritt and I am a Speech-Language Pathologist. I'm originally from a small town in central Wisconsin (Manawa) and moved to Milwaukee for school where I received my Undergraduate and Graduate degrees in Speech & Language Pathology from Marquette University in 2015 and 2017, respectively. I began at RUSD Montessori fresh out of college for the 2017-2018 school year and have been able to learn more and more about the Montessori philosophy and work models from our amazing staff and students.

My husband, Josh, and I live in South Milwaukee with our dog Pepper. While I represent state pride and cheer on the Pack and the Brew Crew, I'm not a big sports person. I enjoy painting and art, singing karaoke, and exploring Southeastern WI.



Mrs. Klemme

Hello! I am the P-COC (Parent-Child Oriented Class) teacher here at RUSD Montessori. I love having the opportunity to explore our world with three-year old’s and their parents. I have been inspiring learners since 1996. When not in the classroom, I enjoy being with my three boys, my husband and our dog. We spend a lot of time on the baseball field both playing and watching and on Sundays in the fall you can find me on the couch cheering for the Minnesota Vikings.









Marianne Giannis

Ms. Marianne

It is so nice to be part of a great team at Goodland Montessori School!  My name is Marianne Giannis and I have been a Montessori teacher for the past 19 years. I am certified in elementary I & II (ages 6-12) from the American Montessori Society.  I received by Montessori certification from the  Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center in Illinois where I also worked as an instructor for 10 years.
I have a bachelor's degree in music education from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.  In addition to the Montessori curriculum, I have taught music, art, and special education. During my free time, I enjoy gardening, bird watching, cooking, and time with my family.  My husband and I have two grown sons who attended Montessori school through 6th grade. 


Ms. Missy

My name is Melissa (Missy) Becker.  I've been teaching in Montessori classrooms since 1991. I have taught every age group from infants through 6th grade.  I currently hold my primary certificate (3-6 years), EI/EII certificate(lower elementary: 6-9 years and upper elementary: 9-12 years). I received my Bachelor's of Education in Early Childhood from Western Illinois University.

I'm married to a wonderful man named Michael. We have two children together, Alexis and Jake.



Ms. Pallin

Melissa Pallin loves helping each child develop to his or her fullest potential.  Melissa ventured into the exciting world of Montessori education in 2011, which is when she earned her AMI Montessori elementary teaching credential from the Montessori Institute of Milwaukee. She absolutely embraces the Montessori philosophy and method.  In the spring of 2018, Melissa earned her Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Carroll University. When Melissa is not teaching and learning, she enjoys healthful living, running, practicing yoga, being in nature, volunteering, organizing educational events in the community, visiting her family's cabin in Michigan, and traveling.



Ms. Smith

My name is Kymberly Smith. I received a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education with a specialization in science from the University of Iowa in 2010. As a traditional teacher, I began my career teaching in Roxbury, MA at an urban high school in one of Boston’s poorest neighborhoods. I moved back to Wisconsin to be closer to family. My family now includes Charlotte, Henry, and Elizabeth. I continued as a traditional teacher at a choice school on the Southside of Milwaukee, teaching science to middle school students. 
It wasn’t until my daughter, Charlotte, became old enough to start looking at school options that my family discovered Montessori. In summer 2017, I began my training at Seton Montessori Institute. I served in the role of assistant teacher at Nature's Classroom for the past two years.  
In my free time, I enjoy reading, hiking, mountain biking, and running. I am excited to become part of the RUSD family at Goodland Elementary as a directress. I love Montessori because it meets each child as his or her own level and directs the lessons to the individual.

News & Updates

You belong HERE. Here in our classrooms with amazing teachers. Here for one of the biggest…
You belong HERE. Here in our classrooms with amazing teachers. Here for one of the biggest…
Hello  Middle School Families,   Effective Monday, September 12th we will be making adjustments…