Montessori Teacher Educators Day

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Our community needs you—the instructors and directors of AMS-affiliated teacher education programs—to continue to thrive in your essential role in preparing the Montessori teachers of tomorrow. With the demand for high-quality Montessori teachers continuously growing, it is more important than ever that AMS provide you with the information, inspiration, and organization you need to excel in your work.

Montessori Teacher Educators Day offers a full lineup of professional growth at The Montessori Event in Nashville. We look forward to you joining us to connect with your peers and get to the heart of what it means to be a Montessori teacher educator.

Each AMS-affiliated TEP receives one complimentary registration voucher. Additional registrations are $65 USD and includes all programming, the keynote luncheon, and a networking reception. Register now.


All times listed below are in the Central Time Zone.

8:00 – 8:30 AM Registration and Check In
8:30 – 9:15 AM AMS Teacher Education Annual Meeting
9:15 – 9:30 AM Break
9:30 – 10:30 AM Montessori Philosophy
10:45 – 11:45 AM The Science of Reading
12:30 – 2:00 PM Keynote Luncheon: The Problem Solving Generation
2:00 – 2:30 PM Break
2:30 – 4:00 PM Collaborative Innovation for the Changing Landscape


Session 1: AMS Teacher Education Annual Meeting

Join for an overview of the state of AMS Teacher Education.


Hilary Green

Hilary Green

Vice President of the AMS Board and Chair of the Teacher Education Section

Michele Mohar

Michele Mohar

Chair Teacher Education Action Committee

Gina Lofquist Chief Education & Learning Officer 

Gina Lofquist

AMS Senior Director of Education and Strategic Initiatives


Melina Papadimitriou

AMS Director of Teacher Education

Session 2: Montessori Philosophy

The foundation of the work we do in our AMS Teacher Education Programs is based on the teachings and practices of Dr. Maria Montessori. Teacher Education Programs train adults to have a deep understanding and implementation of Montessori philosophy and methodology. As teacher educators, how comfortable are we covering the essential elements of Montessori philosophy? How do we ensure that adult learners graduating from any AMS TEP have a consistent and deep understanding of the philosophy and how to actualize it in the classroom? During this hands-on session, we will review content that is covered in the TEPs, question if the information should be covered during the philosophy course component, and discuss if there is anything missing.


Rosemary Quaranta, MEd

Rosemary QuarantaRosemary is currently teaching professor and head of the Lab School at Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH. She is a graduate of Edgecliff College, The Washington Montessori Institute, and Cleveland State University where she received her Master’s Degree in Education with a specialization in Montessori. Rosemary holds AMI credentials (Early Childhood, Elementary I – II) and has over forty years of experience in Montessori classrooms. She has also been a strong lecturer for AMS and MACTE accredited programs. She is passionate about Montessori education, consulting and lecturing with schools nationally and internationally.

Session 3: The Science of Reading

The Science of Reading is an expanding field of educational researchers and practitioners who are focused on highly effective, research-based methods in reading instruction and literacy. Given that Dr. Montessori based her Method on scientific research, Montessori educators would be wise to base their reading and literacy instruction on research-based strategies in this important area. Come discover the high leverage Science of Reading practices the research significantly supports and how they align with the Montessori philosophy and pedagogical practices.


Laura Saylor, PhD, is the dean of education and is an assistant professor in the School of Education at Mount St. Joseph University in Cincinnati, OH. AMS credentialed (Early Childhood, Elementary I – II).

Natasha Feinberg, EdD, is an assistant professor of elementary education at Rhode Island College in Providence, RI. She has worked extensively with the development of multi-tiered system of supports and data-based instruction protocols and implementation. Previously, she has worked both as a reading specialist and literacy coach.

Susan ZollSusan Zoll, PhD, is an associate professor in the Feinstein School of Education and Human Development at Rhode Island College in Providence, RI. She has led several federally-funded early literacy initiatives including a $3.9M Early Reading First project. Susan is the co-chair of the AMS Research Committee. AMS credentialed (Early Childhood).

Session 4: Collaborative Innovation for the Changing Landscape

Our community is shifting in exciting ways. As we launch new initiatives, reimagine the work of AMS, and collaborate with our community to further our shared vision, we invite you, our teacher education community members, to come together and articulate an exciting new vision for the American Montessori Society’s teacher education.


Gina Lofquist

Gina Lofquist, MEd, is senior director of education & strategic initiatives at the American Montessori Society. AMS credentialed (Early Childhood).

Munir ShivjiMunir Shivji, MEd, is the executive director at the American Montessori Society. Previously, he was the founding head of 2 Montessori schools in Texas and founding director of Cambridge Montessori Institute. He is also a former director at the AMS-accredited Cambridge Montessori School and former Montessori Early Childhood teacher. AMS credentialed (Early Childhood, Administrator).

Keynote Luncheon: The Problem Solving Generation

What does the adult need to be and do to support the potential of the next generation of students? We are preparing students to solve local and global problems we haven’t defined yet, using technology that hasn’t been invented, in roles that do not exist. To thrive in this new era, students need to know how to learn, problem solve, iterate, create, collaborate, communicate, and to think critically—concepts already rooted in Montessori philosophy. In this presentation, we will discuss how to prepare our educators with creative insight on bringing education to the next level.

Jaime Casap collaborates with educational institutions and businesses around the world to bring transformational policies and practices that elevate education, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Previously, Jaime served as the chief education evangelist at Google and supported the launch of Google’s GSuite tools for higher education and K – 12; Chromebooks for education; and Google for Education Transformation Framework. Jaime is the author of On Our Street: Our First Talk About Poverty.