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Our Team

Our Director

Kelly Farrell, B.A.H, OCT

Kelly Farrell, B.A.H, OCT

Founder & Director

Kelly Farrell is the Founder and Director of Oak Learners. She is dedicated to supporting learners of all ages and abilities reach their goals and love the learning journey. Kelly’s philosophy of education is based in the understanding that every child has the capacity to excel and succeed when they are given the tools and taught the skills to help them on their journey.

Kelly is an OCT Certified teacher and has worked in classrooms and alternative learning environments since 1996 and as a certified teacher since 2004, working with students from Kindergarten through Grade 12. Kelly has a passion for empowering students to develop confidence through building on their strengths to support their difficulties, particularly those with learning exceptionalities, including Learning Differences, ASD, social emotional needs, and anxiety.  Kelly subscribes to the tenants of Montessori, Reggio-Emilia and Constructivist methods of teaching and is always looking for ways to bring these strategies into the 21st Century through technology and environmental education. 

Throughout her teaching careers, Kelly has been teaching, leading, and connecting students and staff with a global community of educators leading the way in 21st century personalized learning. In 2014, Kelly was awarded “Project of the Year” at the Water Docs @School Film Festival for her Inquiry-Based Learning project, “Kids Against Road Salt“.  This project has been used to train new teachers on the benefits and processes behind inquiry-based learning. Kelly’s teaching was also featured in Owl Magazine on the “Cool School” page in  2014 for a unique publishing project undertaken by her Grade 7/8 class that year.

Kelly has also founded Teach Me Social in 2012, a social media marketing agency and training organization which continues to empower entrepreneurs to brand themselves online and share their messages through social media. Her experience in business and educational leadership lends Kelly a unique approach to technology training. She offers business owners a different perspective on technology, gaining participation in her sessions by energizing participants and inspiring them to dive into the Social Media world whilst also providing valuable skills, tips and strategies they can use to construct their online presence at their own pace.

Our Teaching Team

Doran Reed

Doran Reed

Early Education Teacher

Doran is a certified Early Childhood Educator. Born and raised in The Bahamas, Doran discovered her passion working with children at a young age- starting and running Early Childhood programs at her high school that are still in place today. She has been working as an ECE for the last 3 years after graduating from George Brown College. Doran loves hands on experiences and exploring new ways of learning! She loves incorporating music and the arts into her classes, always trying to bring a smile to her student’s faces! Doran is passionate and constantly tries to create an inclusive and supportive environment for the children to learn and discover in.
Emma van der Jagt B.A., ECE

Emma van der Jagt B.A., ECE

Kindergarten Teacher

Emma has been working with children in recreation and education for 9 years. She found her passion through working with children and youth at camps around Ontario as well as teaching swimming lessons. She has been working as a respite support worker and tutoring social/life skills for 2 years. She loves to find new ways to incorporate nature and arts into experiential learning experiences. Emma is passionate about creating positive learning experiences that create opportunities for children to step out of their comfort zones and discover their potential.

After receiving her Bachelor of Arts (psychology, philosophy and sociology) from Wilfrid Laurier University she followed her dream to become an Early Childhood Educator at Conestoga College. She loves working with people of all abilities and backgrounds and believes in creating a co-learning environment.

Katie Hartford, B.Sc.H.

Katie Hartford, B.Sc.H.

High School Tutor, Math & Science

Katie Hartford has an Honours Bachelor of Science in Astrophysics from McMaster University and is currently working toward her MBA at the DeGroote School of Business. She has always had a passion for Math and the Sciences and loves having the opportunity to pass that passion on to others while helping them to find success. She has been tutoring for 4 years now and is thrilled to be a part of the Oak Learners team. 
 
When she isn’t working, Katie loves being active, rock climbing and running regularly, and playing tennis and hockey when the weather allows. She also loves curling up with a good book and spending time with her family and friends. 
Fabiana Scolieri, OCT

Fabiana Scolieri, OCT

Teacher: French, English, Learning Strategies, ABA

Fabiana is a passionate educator and has worked in a variety of fields centring around Special Education. She has a background in Autism and Behavioural Science and has worked as an ABA/IBI Therapist, Tutor, and Public School Teacher. Fabiana is passionate about individualized and differentiated learning.
Arlen Palfreyman

Arlen Palfreyman

Literacy Specialist

Arlen has a B.A. with Honours in Psychology and Sociology, and has been working with a range of students since her graduation. She understands and supports all kinds of behaviour and unique needs, and tailors her students learning experiences around those needs. Passionate about the English language, her focus surrounds literacy activities with a cross-curricular approach to encourage inquisitive learning.
Julia Hess

Julia Hess

Elementary Tutor & Online Program Instructor

Julia is currently studying in the Concurrent Education program at Queen’s University with a major in Psychology. She loves working with kids and people with disabilities and spends time volunteering and working in many community settings. She loves getting to know everyone she works with while supporting them in working towards their goals, and she hopes to work as an Elementary Special Education teacher in the future.

Kim Anh Vo

Kim Anh Vo

Teacher

Kim is a passionate Registered Early Childhood Educator and is currently studying in the Child Development program at Seneca College. As an educator, she believes that all children are unique. Kim is devoted to supporting children to succeed and in developing and strengthening their abilities. When she is finished school, she hopes to go abroad to teach English and work as an Early Interventionist or Child Life Specialist. When Kim is not working, she enjoys planting, painting, cooking and hiking.

Julia Taylor, OCT

Julia Taylor, OCT

Teacher & Tutor

Julia is so excited to be teaching at Oak Learners! She is an OCT certified high school teacher with qualifications in English, History and Special Education. Before coming to Oak Learners, Julia worked as a camp staff at  Autism Ontario Niagara, a one-to-one clinician at a private reading clinic and as an assistant language teacher in an international high school in Japan. When she is not working, Julia enjoys reading, painting, biking, swimming and cooking.

Mia Aldhelm-White

Mia Aldhelm-White

Child and Youth Care Practitioner (CYC)

Mia just graduated from the advanced child and youth care program at George Brown college. She was lucky enough to do her placement at Oak Learners and absolutely fell in love! She adores working with children, being outdoors and cooking!

Jenna Baxter

Jenna Baxter

Teacher

Jenna is currently studying in the Social Service Work program at Mohawk College. Making a positive impact in the lives of others is Jenna’s passion in life. She has always enjoyed working with children from a young age and has experience working in multiple child care settings, spending 3 years focused on the support and inclusion of children with special needs.

Jenna enjoys all things creative and strives to find opportunities to create, explore and learn wherever possible. She is enthusiastic about inclusive team work environments as she has spent over 10 years as an athlete in competitive cheerleading. Jenna aims to create meaningful, positive and empowering moments with everyone she interacts with at Oak Learners.

Melody Mago

Melody Mago

Child and Youth Care Practitioner (CYC)

Melody is a new graduate from the Accelerated Child and Youth Care program at George Brown College. Prior to attending George Brown, she received her B.A. from Wilfrid Laurier University, pursing Environmental Studies. Her passion for the environment and working with children and youth, gave her the interest in mental health. Aside from that, she also loves cooking, dancing, learning about new cultures and being outdoors. While doing her placement at Oak Learners, she was able to hone and develop many skills to equip her as a CYC-P. Her studies and experiences have helped foster dedication, commitment, and enthusiasm. She is looking forward to gaining new experiences. learning more and meeting others!

Michelle Marchiori, OCT

Michelle Marchiori, OCT

Teacher

Michelle is an Ontario Certified Teacher that works primarily with primary/junior grades. She has a wide range of experience in the classroom, virtual school, tutoring, and running after school programming that has allowed her to explore the use of technology in classrooms, hands on learning and working with students with different abilities which helped her expand her knowledge of differentiated teaching. Other than Michelle’s passion for teaching she loves to dance, paint, read, spend time with family and friends and get outdoors to enjoy nature.

Adrianna Armstrong

Adrianna Armstrong

Teacher

Adrianna is currently in the Concurrent Education program at Queen’s University. She is working towards a major in psychology and a minor in English, and she is also taking a concentration of courses in Indigenous Studies. She enjoys working with kids and has done so as a soccer coach, swimming instructor, and respite care worker. Adrianna is also passionate about mental health work and advocacy and she pursues volunteer work in this field. In the future she hopes to combine her love for working with youth with mental health work so that she can support youth and foster their overall development and well-being.

 Alexandra Pirogova

Alexandra Pirogova

Virtual Program Facilitator

Alexandra is currently a student at Brock University in the International Dual Degree BBA program and will also be at NEOMA School of Business in Reims, France studying towards a Diplôme du Centre d’Etudes Supérieures Européennes de Management. She loves working with kids and has done so as a private tutor, soccer coach, and now as a virtual program facilitator at Oaklearners! She is passionate about helping kids succeed and strives to make learning fun. In her free time, you might find her drinking coffee, playing soccer, or studying!
Alayna Cameron

Alayna Cameron

French Tutor

Alayna has a Bachelor of Arts in French Studies from York University. She has always had a passion for French as a Second Language learning, as she herself was in the French Immersion program here in Ontario.

She loves to be able to share her passion for learning the French language and hopes that the passion is passed on to her students. She has been tutoring for 4 years and has had students from 5 years old to adults and is enjoying being a part of the Oak Learners team!

Jasmine Chan

Jasmine Chan

Kindergarten Teacher

Hi! I am Jasmine Chan and I’m so excited to be teaching Kindergarten at Oak Learners this year! This will be my 10th year teaching and have previously taught toddlers and preschoolers in Montessori. I love teaching because I love making learning fun for others! I am looking forward to this year – it’s going to be great!
Jasmine Brioux

Jasmine Brioux

Teacher

Jasmine is an OCT certified teacher with qualifications in the Primary/Junior division and French as a Second Language (FSL). Prior to completing her education program, Jasmine worked with children for over nine years as a dance instructor, camp counsellor, camp program director and tutor. She studied visual arts and danced competitively for most of her life and is passionate about arts programming. Jasmine believes that children should have the opportunity to express their ideas and individuality creatively. Her teaching philosophy focuses heavily on the principles of inclusivity, inquiry and collaboration.
Maggie Robertson

Maggie Robertson

Teacher

Maggie is a new OCT graduate from the Bachelor of Education program at Western University. Prior to this, Maggie completed her Bachelor of Kinesiology with the University of Toronto and has spent almost 10 years teaching dance lessons as well as a variety of sport skill/recreation classes. 

Michelle Pomeroy

Michelle Pomeroy

Teacher

Michelle graduated from the University of Toronto in 2009 with a Master of Arts in Child Study and Education and a Specialist certificate in Special Education. In 2010, she began working at an inquiry-based, independent school that focused on providing engaging, experiential, individualized programming for students with a wide range of learning abilities. In 2014 she moved to San Diego, California, where she continued to develop her teaching practice, as well as spread her passion for and commitment to Environmental/Outdoor Education and conservation.
She moved back to Toronto in 2018 to be closer to family and is currently working full-time as a Grade 8 teacher for the Toronto District School Board. She recently completed her Principal Qualification Program and is looking forward to implementing Environmental/Outdoor Education initiatives throughout the 2021-2022 school year, as students begin to return to buildings and continue to experience academic and emotional challenges as a result of the current pandemic. When she is not teaching, Michelle can be found improvising on a stage, sailing in Lake Ontario, photographing historic buildings and travelling around the world (in non-COVID times)!
Natalie Julien

Natalie Julien

Music Tutor

Natalie is so excited to be teaching at Oak Learners! She holds two post secondary musical theatre diplomas and grew up studying classical music (RCM). She has been teaching for the last 10+ years in many different capacities and currently teaches at a Downtown music studio, with Little Rebels baby music classes and is an active stage and screen performer. She has spent a lot of her life caring for children as a nanny, and brings an empathetic, patient and holistic approach to teaching. Nothing makes her happier than seeing a child’s confidence and instrument flourish! She is offering drama, voice & piano studies.

Our Specialists Team

Rebecca Reid Payne, OT, OCT

Rebecca Reid Payne, OT, OCT

Willow OT Services

Rebecca is the Head Occupational Therapist at Willow. She works primarily with school-aged children who have mental and physical disabilities such as autism, global developmental delay, hearing loss and visual impairments. Focussing on both home- and school-based intervention, Rebecca is responsible for both program development and implementation. She has over ten years of experience working with children with disabilities and she has a passion for enhancing the wellbeing of her clients. Fostering greater independence and heightened self-esteem are two core elements of her practice and she approaches every therapy session as an opportunity to help the client grow to their full potential.
Donna Reed

Donna Reed

Yoga Instructor

Yoga has been part of my life since age 12. Yoga has helped me to remain strong and flexible throughout my life, as well as keeping my mind sharp and focused. I have been going to the Sivananda Ashram, Bahamas since 1997 and took Teacher Training in 2012. I thoroughly enjoy bringing the experience of Yoga to all.

Our Educational Support Team

Lauren Ablack

Lauren Ablack

Educational Assistant

Lauren’s passion for working with kids was absolutely realized at Oak Learner’s! She has a history of volunteer work in different public schools, and has created different programs in different schools that are thriving still today. Lauren has been assisting our teachers for three years after falling in love with the experiential learning and beautiful philosophy at the school. She loves sketching, painting, sculpting, and watching what the kids create with their incredible minds!
Anna Kaczorowski, CYW

Anna Kaczorowski, CYW

Educational Assistant

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