Dedicated to You and Your Children
After receiving degrees in theology and philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Robin earned her MA in Theology with a concentration in Marriage and Family from the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family. Here she first discovered the book The Religious Potential of the Child by Sofia Cavalletti, co-creator of the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS). Cavalletti’s respect for the child and their ability to have their own relationship with God led Robin to seek an atrium to experience CGS for herself. She eventually delved into Maria Montessori’s own work, participating in the Parent‐Child course at Gladwyne Montessori.
Upon moving to back to Steubenville in 2013, Robin was overjoyed to join the board of trustees at Immaculate Heart of Mary Montessori, a part‐time Children’s House run by Mrs. Marie Sherman, and then helped the program add full-time primary, elementary, and CGS programs at Sacred Heart Villa.
Upon Marie’s retirement, Robin was entrusted by Marie with the task merging IHMM with Mary Seat of Wisdom and to serve on the MSW board. In 2016, Robin established the Parent‐Child Program, and, given the enthusiastic response, a permanent Nido classroom for both Parent‐Child and Step Up programs in 2019. Robin is also certified in CGS Level 1, and has assisted in both Level 1 and 2 atriums.
The two constants in Robin’s life have always been her Catholic faith and her family. Along with her years of parish and ministry work, she sees family as the image of God in the world and the young child as one of God’s greatest masterpieces. She and her husband John Henry have four children who joyfully attend MSW.
School Administrator / Elementary Assistant (Afternoon)
Julia earned a BA in English from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2019, after decades fascinated by education and immersed in creative writing. Along with many years of directing youth theatre, she has taught poetry workshops for middle school and high school students, and she devised a 6-week improv & theatre movement program for children ages 8-13 in summer of 2019. On the communications side of things, in 2020, Julia worked as a social media marketer for a Catholic classical academy in Stamford, CT, before spending a year corresponding with clients at a local consignment business. She returned to Steubenville to work at MSW in August 2021, and completed her AMI Montessori 6-12 Assistants Certificate from the Montessori Institute of Bangalore in the fall. She is grateful for the opportunity to serve the families in this community and encourage creative expression for the glory of God in the students at MSW.
Step Up Guide
Rebekah has been surrounded by Montessori her whole life. She grew up as a student of Montessori philosophy herself, and her mother has been a long-time classroom guide. Rebekah received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Franciscan University of Steubenville, contributing to her passion for childhood development. She has certification in AMI Orientation to 0-3, as well as both Parent/Toddler and Level 1 of Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. Five of Rebekah's children are enrolled at MSW, continuing to receive the gifts the Lord has given to her family through Montessori education.
Step Up Assistant
Maria has been familiar with the methods and environment of Montessori all her life, as she attended Montessori school for 9 years from ages 3-12. Throughout the past 10 years she has spent extensive time observing and aiding in the making of materials, the arrangement of classrooms, and the organization of class opera productions while helping her mother who is head of a Montessori elementary class and certified in AMI and CGS. In addition to her formative Montessori background, Maria loves spending time with and learning from very young children, having spent two summers nannying for a family of 5 girls ages 2-9. The “absorbent mind” concept is one she is most fascinated with and enjoys seeing in action every day in the Nido classroom. Maria graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from Franciscan University in 2021, and she lives with her husband Paul in Steubenville.
Melanie was convinced during college that God was calling her to pursue teaching, after watching her mother prepare activities for her preschool class through childhood. She graduated from Grove City College with a Bachelor’s of Science in PreK-4 Elementary Education in 2018. While struggling through a year as a traditional preschool teacher, her sister introduced her to a few Montessori ideas, and when Melanie witnessed the beautiful change in her classroom when she implemented them, she knew she had to learn more. Melanie completed her AMI Primary training at the Montessori Institute of North Texas the following year, and fresh from this training, started teaching at MSW in 2020. Melanie finds joy in how the Montessori method encourages a particular respect of each child, and she loves to watch the children discover the world around them in deep and meaningful ways.
Lucy was introduced to Montessori education through her study of clinical psychology, in which she received a degree from Franciscan University of Steubenville. Although her formal education informed her of the Montessori method, it was Lucy’s love of the Steubenville community which connected her with Mary Seat of Wisdom specifically. She is currently in the process of obtaining an AMI Primary 3-6 certification with the Southwest Institute of Montessori Studies, and feels blessed to serve the beautiful and energetic community of MSW while learning about the vibrant world of Montessori education.
Growing up with seven siblings, Bridget has had a lifelong passion for taking care of children, leading her to graduate from Franciscan University of Steubenville with a degree in Early Childhood Education in 2019. Since then, she has nannied for a family of young children and taught in Catholic education for both 3rd and 4th grade. Bridget is currently studying to obtain her Montessori teaching certification in Lower Elementary from the North American Montessori Center, and she is happy to share both her skill and joy in the elementary classroom at MSW.
Elementary Assistant (Morning)
As the oldest of eight, Ariel has had lifelong experience with children. She is a 2020 graduate from Franciscan University of Steubenville, earning her bachelor’s degree in education as well as her elementary license (K-3) and intervention specialist license (K-12). While in college, she had the opportunity to be Vice President of Kappa Delta Pi, a nationally accredited honors society for upcoming and current teachers, and was also a part of the Student Council for Exceptional Children. Ariel also had the opportunity to visit local schools and teach English while studying abroad in Gaming, Austria. Post-college, she spent 18 months as a special education teacher in a local Steubenville school, teaching fully online for six of those months.
Ariel enjoys theater, art, and music. When she is not teaching, she can be found playing an instrument, jumping on a trampoline, or reading. She strives to encourage others to do the best they can do and to work hard, and she hopes to pass on her love and passion to the MSW community.
Monica’s first exposure to the Montessori method was through the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. In 1998, a neighbor had prepared an Atrium her home and invited few families to join her young son once a week. Once her daughter was regularly coming home from the Atrium singing joyfully and deeply contented, Monica wanted all of her children to have that experience. When the neighbors moved away the following year, Monica prayed fervently for another CGS opportunity for her children and, four years later, began to suspect that the Lord was calling her to provide it for her community. She began taking classes and simultaneously teaching friends’ children in a bare-bones Atrium constructed in her dining room, and by the time Monica finished her training a year later, she was hosting 30 children, ages 3-6, in her home. She has since completed CGS training for all three levels, with 18 total years of experience with the children in the Atrium, as well as a Montessori assistant certificate from The Center for Guided Montessori Studies. Her eight children have participated in a variety of schooling, including MSW since some of its earliest days (which led to her becoming the school’s catechist). Monica is grateful to God for His great blessings of joy through this form of catechesis, upon both her family and the other children whom she has taught in the Atrium.
“We must help the child to act for himself,
will for himself,
think for himself;
this is the art of those who aspire to serve
Board of Trustees
Mary Seat of Wisdom is a 501(c)(3) non-profit institution governed by a Board of Directors which provides oversight for the school.
Our current board members are:
Rich Stein (Chair)
John Henry Crosby (Vice-Chair)
Volunteer Board Members
Board members can include parents and grandparents of current and alumni students, and external community members.
The Board is responsible for ensuring that the mission of Mary Seat of Wisdom Montessori is carried out and it has fiduciary responsibility for the school. Board members actively lead long-term and strategic planning efforts, and engage in fund raising and community-building initiatives.
The Board of Directors employs the Director of the school, who is responsible for executing the policies established by the Board, hiring faculty and staff, and managing the daily operations of the school.
If you are interested or would like to recommend someone for Board Service, please contact The Board Chair
Parents play a key role in the development of their children at MSW.
Working with two fully trained Montessori lead instructors and multiple assistants, parents receive support in their parenting journey. There is opportunity for parents to participate in parent education, fundraising, community events, monthly Mass and much more. The Mary Seat of Wisdom family is a great Catholic community.