Executive Director, Teacher & Board of Directors
B.S. Computer Science, Stanford University, 2000
M.A. Educational Psychology, University of Colorado Denver, 2007
Early Childhood Education Teaching License
Director Qualification, Colorado Department of Human Services
K-12 Teacher & Facilities Coordinator
I have spent the past six years working with children, the elderly, the medically fragile, and people with developmental disabilities. Prior to coming to Patchwork, I worked for five years at Imagine!, a non-profit that works with children and adults who have developmental disabilities. Before this, I worked at an assisted living facility where I was responsible for over 25 people. I worked for a summer at Thorne Ecological Institute, a wonderful organization based in East Boulder that offers environmental education to children. My school and education experience includes Rocky Mountain School for the Gifted and Creative, as well as Boulder Journey School, a preschool based on the Reggio Emilia approach of learning. I spent two years working as a snowboard instructor at Eldora Mountain Resort, where I focused specifically on working with children. I began working at Patchwork as a volunteer and substitute teacher, and really enjoyed it. I was attracted to Patchwork because of the democratic based education style, and a desire to focus on creating opportunities for children to learn rather than trying to learn for them. In my free time, I enjoy playing chess, hiking, snowboarding, being outside, and spending quality time with friends.
Toddler Lead Teacher & IDEC 2013 Organizer
Sally Anderson is currently at University of Colorado, also in the INVST program, which strives to create leaders dedicated to social and environmental justice. Originally from Durham, North Carolina, she is a true Duke basketball fan and loves southern food! Sally is currently a senior at CU studying International Affairs with a minor in Gender Studies and Leadership Studies. Through the INVST program and her experiences with Patchwork she has come to firmly believe that education is the pathway to creating a more just world and is dedicated to making quality education accessible to everyone. She has a passion for sustainable agriculture, incorporating gardening into schools and is currently working on building an aquaponics system at Patchwork! Sally is so excited to have the opportunity to work with and learn from all the Patchwork School has to offer.
Originally from Los Angeles, CA I developed a passion for Early Childhood Education after having my son. After receiving a Teacher’s Certificate in ECE from Santa Monica College, I moved to Boulder to continue my education at Naropa University, where I’m working on my BA in Contemplative Early Childhood Education. Moving to Boulder I have continued my love of hiking and finding the best places to appreciate Mother Nature. In California it was the ocean and the beach, in Colorado it has been the Rocky Mountains; all gifts that are incorporated in my philosophy of education. When I’m not teaching/learning from the children, parents and teachers at Patchwork, I am with my son cooking, baking, playing and enjoying life.
Library/Materials Resource Coordinator
I am passionate about working with children. I believe that the child’s work is play. Play entails imagination and a sense of personal involvement and purpose – whether it is purpose in storytelling, artwork, dancing, or just being silly. Play involves the freedom to explore the environment at hand thoroughly with one’s senses, all the while learning through sensation, creation, and exploration. It is something that should be enjoyable and FUN. And in that moment when a child loses herself and makes a new connection, when she has that realization and you can see the sparks shooting from her head as she processes, there is magic. Pure and simple. This is why I teach...(well that and the oodles of hugs). I received my BA in Developmental Psychology from San Francisco State University and then went straight into the Masters Program in Early Childhood Education. My family and I feel blessed to have found The Patchwork School and its amazing and inspiring staff and program.
K-12 Teacher, Parent Outreach Coordinator, Counselor
Preschool Intern Teacher
Children have always been an integral part of my life. I come from a large, loving family and was raised in a very tight-knit community, so I have been caring for, playing with, and learning from kids since I can remember. I've also worked as a kindergarten teaching assistant, done volunteer work in schools, and have been a private nanny for the last three years. My most thorough experience with children has been in my role as a mother though. My daughter, Ava, has inspired me to learn and grow in ways I did not even know were possible. Finding Patchwork was a dream come true for both of us. I am so grateful to have found a place that honors and celebrates my child and her learning process in the way that Patchwork does, and to learn as a teacher in this kind of setting! I am an intern teacher here for the 2012-2013 school year, also working on my certificate in Early Childhood Education through the TILA Teach and Lead teacher certification program. I received my BA in Sociology from Arizona State University in 2009.
Michele Craig Leonard (Mitch)
Toddler Program Coordinator
I received my BA in Sociology and Gerontology at Colorado State University in 2007. Shortly after I discovered my passion for learning and laughing with children. Through a series of the "stars aligning" I found The Patchwork School were all people regardless of age, are agents for change when they engage critically and compassionately with the world. I then conquered my Masters Degree in Educational Psychology from CU Denver and teaching certifications from The Friends School Teaching Program in Boulder, CO. I love sharing in the discovery and delight of learning with my young students and creating a multi-generational learning community. I am so grateful to be a part of the loving and supportive petri-dish of Patchwork.
Preschool Program Coordinator, Counselor & Board of Directors
Christy Lochary serves as the community liaison in addition to being a teacher at The Patchwork School. Having attended public school as a young person, Christy went on to graduate from University of Colorado with a B.A. in Fine Arts and a minor in Sociology. Her desire to work at The Patchwork School stems from a desire for all children to have the opportunity to find an environment that works for them; an environment that supports their development as self-actualized individuals living in community with others. Christy also serves as administrative assistant for the Alternative Education Resource Organization’s Colorado office, and is a member of the AERO Conference Organizing Committee. In addition she is also involved in a Community Organizing internship with The Institute for Democratic Education in America (IDEA), where she will be connecting community organizations in Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, Kansas and Utah.
K-12 Program Coordinator, IDEC 2013 Organizer & Board of Directors
Haley has been involved in education and social justice in Colorado for several years now. True to her character, throughout this time, she has not only grown a deeper appreciation of polka dots, but she has also, more seriously, deepened her love of working (and playing) with children in a way that honors each child’s uniqueness and their innate curiosity. In addition to working at the Patchwork School since 2007 (and loving it), she has also been working with Colorado Options in Education, INVST Community Studies and IDEC 2013. She has experience in grant writing, facilitation, fundraising and nonprofit operations. Haley Sladek has her B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and a double minor in Leadership Studies and Peace and Conflict Studies from CU- Boulder, her MA in Education from Goddard College and her Colorado State Teaching License for K-6.
Preschool Lead Teacher, Lead Art Teacher
I have been lucky enough to have the most amazing teachers in my life, teachers who have nurtured my love of learning and encouraged me to hunger for the pursuit of knowledge. It is partly these teachers and mentors that have inspired me to pursue a career in education. It is important for me to give back to my community and I believe that teaching is one way for me to accomplish this. I grew up in Colorado and have worked with youth in various settings: classroom, non-profit, day camp, and outdoor classroom. I graduated from The Colorado College with my English degree and a concentration in poetry. After spending time as a substitute at The Patchwork School I knew that I had to pursue a career an education. While working at Patchwork, I realized not only that I want to teach, but that I am a teacher. I look forward to seeing the children and have had a joyful experience getting to know them as people I am currently working on my Masters in Elementary Education through Goddard College and completing an internship at Patchwork. I am so excited to join the Patchwork community and to laugh and learn with the youth, parents, community members, and teachers.