It was Journey’s warmth and sense of community that first drew Ms. Davis to the school as a parent and educator. During her initial visit, she understood that the school’s educational pillars rang true, “Taking the long view of education, creating relationships that last, integrating the disciplines, working in partnership with parents, and much more.” So, in spite of previous success in traditional schools, where she was recognized as teacher of the year, Ms. Davis committed to Journey as a Main Class Teacher back in 2009.
Ms. Davis holds a Multiple Subject Credential from CSU, San Marcos—where she also earned a Bilingual Credential and Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Studies. She will graduate from Rudolph Steiner College in 2013 with a Certification and Master’s Degree in Waldorf Education.
Below, Ms. Davis reflects upon her first three years:
“It has been an honor to lead my class through Fifth Grade. The students and parents are such impressive people. I am now excited to serve as a First Grade Teacher to experience how the program unfolds from the very beginning. I am thrilled about being with the class from the outset, establishing ourselves as a family, making memories together, and then creating future chances to look back at the younger years as we travel up the grades together.”
Ms. Davis is glad she has the benefit of knowing first hand how well the education works in the upper grades:
“I’ve watched my students exceed grade level in every way. Now, I get to experience the unfolding of Journey’s developmental model from the beginning. I want to bring exactly what the students’ brains and bodies need when they need it. I’m grateful I already know how it works.”
Ms. Davis also looks forward to establishing the next generation of school leaders in the parent body as well:
“Because of my current parents’ efforts, I have experienced the beauty of creating a ‘family’ that accepts each other and builds amazing experiences for the children—like smooth camping trips and magical plays. The parents do so much—they affect the attitudes of the kids in the class, and outside of the class they are also the sparks that make things happen. I have experienced nothing like it in my professional life and wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Outside of school, Ms. Davis does yoga, cooks using new flavors from around the world, participates in a book club, runs, and spends time with her boys camping and swimming.
Ms. Barger began teaching at Journey in 2011 by juggling multiple roles. She launched the year as an Apprentice First Grade Teacher training to become a Main Class Teacher in 2012. She also co-led the 7th Grade and reflects:
“Being with the 7th grade was an experience that will forever be true and dear to my heart! Because of my time in 7th grade I have learned so much about Journey, Waldorf Education and teaching! I feel even more prepared for First Grade and feel blessed to see how Journey and Waldorf build such a strong foundation in children on so many levels!”
Ms. Barger continues:
“I still pinch myself just to be sure this is not a dream, to be working at a school that values and respects not only the child, but the parent and the educators too. It is a pleasure to teach at a school that truly values teaching the ‘head, hands, and heart.’ This is in line with my personal philosophy of education. I feel privileged for all the opportunities I have already had to immerse myself in the Waldorf Way and I can’t wait to gain even more depth after spending a chunk of summer at Rudolph Steiner College.
Ms. Barger is currently earning her Waldorf Teacher Certificate and Master’s Degree. And, she has abundant experience working with young children—having led a popular art program in the region for many years. Ms. Barger enjoys studying about childhood development and educating parent partners about key milestones their children achieve.
Ms. Barger was raised in the Northwest and has spent the last 24 years in southern California where she reared her own children. She earned her BA in Human Development from Pacific Oaks University and a Multiple Subject Credential from CSU, Fullerton. In her “spare time” Ms. Barger enjoys spending time with her husband as they explore new terrain in her jeep. Fishing, paddle boarding, and camping are favorite pastimes.
Ms. Barger is very excited about the future:
“I look forward to many wonderful years at Journey working with an amazing administration, office staff, teachers, and parents who value education and respect children like no other place!”