Meet the GSB Teachers

Please meet our team of highly qualified and motivated teachers.

Admin Team

  • Kerstin Haakenson


    I am originally from Horn-Bad Meinberg, a small town in North Rhine-Westfalia, Germany, and got my teaching degree in Dortmund and Hamburg. Ever since I started teaching I have been particularly interested in children’s language acquisition, foreign language learning, and the amazing beneficial effects bilingual education has on a child’s overall development. Originally a special education teacher for children with challenges in their speech-language and learning development, I have over ten years of elementary teaching experience of which six years were in German and English immersion schools in the United States and Germany. Through my background in special education I know about different types of learners and their individual needs. It is very important for me to arrange learning environments that are open and supportive for everyone.

    Over the years, I have attended various professional development programs, mainly in the field of communication and mediation. I also love to be actively involved in school development, curriculum work, creation of lesson plans, and teaching materials.

    I have had three great years at GSB already and I am looking forward to an exciting new school year with an amazing staff.

  • Melissa Bourgeois

    Assistant Principal and English, Social Studies, Grade 8

    I love connecting with students, and have a diverse background as an educator. I have taught in the NYC public schools as well as abroad, have managed the curriculum for The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and I am also a certified yoga teacher for both children and adults. I hold a BA in English from Columbia University and a Masters in Education from Lehman College as a NYC Teaching Fellow.

    In my years as a Language Arts teacher at the Manhattan School for Children, my classroom was used as a model for the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project. I worked closely with consultants from Teachers College along with my colleagues to practice and refine the workshop model of teaching reading and writing. Educators from various schools would observe to learn the style and debrief after the lessons. It was during this time that I fell in love with teaching reading and writing, and I am grateful to be able to teach what I love at GSB.

    I’ve had the pleasure of teaching at GSB since the school began in 2014. In 2015, my role expanded when I took on the positions of Head of Lower School and Head of the English Department. This year my role expanded again when I took on the position of Assistant Principal. I am grateful to be part of such a supportive, dynamic community.

  • Kathleen Wenzel

    Head of Kindergarten

    I graduated from the Theater Academy Mannheim Germany with an acting degree. After graduation I had the opportunity to work as a theater educator with special needs teenagers, where I quickly discovered my love of teaching children. I received an additional certification in “Intercultural Education” with a specialization in Communication and Pedagogy in Berlin.

    Beginning in 2010, I worked at multiple preschools in Germany as a theater educator and preschool teacher of children between the ages of one and three, with a focus on the pedagogy of Emmi Pikler.

    In addition, I also began working as a private tutor in voice and speech for new residents to Germany. My work initially began as a way to help these new German speakers improve their German pronunciation, though, over the years, as I was hired by more students, I began focusing on teaching them the German language as well.

    I came to New York City in 2015 where I worked as a lead teacher in a German immersion preschool.

    I love working with children, and my biggest passion is helping them discover their own abilities, as well as helping to instill in them a sense of self-confidence and curiosity about the world.

  • Jane Marie Hutcheson

    Head of Lower School and Grade 4 Class Teacher | English subjects

    Originally from Alabama, I currently live in Manhattan in New York City. I began my teaching career in Southeast Washington, D.C. teaching kindergarten and pre-kindergarten. After moving to New York City to pursue my graduate degree, I received both a Master of Arts and a Master of Education in Curriculum and Teaching at Teachers College at Columbia University. My master’s research focused on creating an anti-bias education professional development curriculum for the staff at GSB. I piloted this curriculum with the 2018-2019 staff and am now continuing to work with our school leaders to develop continuing education around this topic for all staff members.

    Early childhood education is my passion, and my breadth of experience working with students from pre-kindergarten through third grade has given me a unique perspective on where students begin in school and where they are going throughout the early childhood years. One focus of my work in the classroom is exploring what it means to build a positive classroom community. I believe strongly in educating the whole child, knowing students should achieve academically while also growing in social-emotional skills.

    Another passion of mine is teaching students from a multicultural education lens, encouraging students to explore and question the world around them while learning about different cultures. Teaching English at a bilingual school allows me to use my enthusiasm for early literacy and multicultural education to give our students a challenging but exciting atmosphere to investigate the world around them.

    When not in school at GSB, I enjoy running in Riverside Park, playing with my Uncle’s dog, Harper, visiting art exhibits around the city, or trying new cooking recipes.

  • Jens van Laak

    Middle School Coordinator, Math in German, Grades 5-8

    I am a German native certified high school teacher with a 1st and 2nd state exam in Math and English.

    Before moving to the USA in 2016, I worked at different schools in the elementary and high school levels in Australia and Scotland as well as a class teacher and the head of the math department at a high school in Germany.

    During my time in the USA, I worked as a math teacher at a charter high school and middle school where I not only received a valuable insight into the American school system but also into teaching classes based on common core standards.

    This is now my fourth year working at GSB and I have had many wonderful opportunities to teach diverse groups of students at all different levels as well as supporting the young learners develop into autonomous, responsible and successful individuals. My goal has always been to motivate my students in ascertaining their inner strength, abilities and the activities that truly inspire them.

  • Amy Stern

    High School Coordinator, Counselor and Science, Grade 4

    I grew up in Iowa and called Phoenix, Arizona home for thirteen years after college. In 2009, I received my M. Ed. degree in Secondary Education, Curriculum and Instruction from Arizona State University. In Phoenix, I spent most of my teaching career as a history and English teacher at a rigorous college-preparatory high school for young women. Most recently, I was an academic guidance counselor there and supported the students on their academic and college paths. I moved to Brooklyn in 2018 with my husband and two daughters and I am currently completing my Master of Science in school counseling through Alfred University. I enjoy helping students navigate their academic experiences, but I also find it rewarding to support students emotionally and socially as they move through their school years. I believe that it is important as a teacher and as a counselor to listen and genuinely promote a supportive atmosphere for students to learn. I think it’s important for students to find the answer themselves or talk through the topic to authentically develop knowledge. I’m thrilled to join such a dynamic and thoughtful school community at GSB! 

  • Ourania Adani

    Art, Grade K-3

    I graduated as a Meisterschülerin for Conceptual and Visual Arts at the University of the Arts in Berlin 2005. Worked and lived as an Artist and enrolled in the Waldorf Pedagogy Seminar in 2009 where I graduated as a Waldorf Subject Teacher for the Arts in 2011.

    Since then I worked as an Art Educator and Teaching Artist in public and private schools in Berlin, Germany and NYC. The last two years I worked at the Brooklyn Waldorf School and The Rudolf Steiner School in NYC.

    I am very excited to be working at GSB and be a part of its community.

  • Sabine Deinhardt

    Grade 4 Class Teacher | German subjects

    For the past two years I have been obtaining my Masters Degree in Education while teaching Middle School in Nürnberg, Germany. The great diversity at this large school (600 students) enriched my teaching experience. I worked as part of a “tandem” (co-teaching model) and it was so encouraging to see the positive impact we achieved in our students lives.

    I am excited to be teaching younger kids again at the German School Brooklyn. After graduating from Friedrich- Alexander- Universität in Nürnberg, I taught 2nd and 3rd grade, focusing on Social Studies, German and Physical Education.

    My mission as a teacher is, to support young students, so they can become confident and successful learners. I am looking forward to being part of the GSB community and to positively contribute to it.

  • Jens Ellerhold

    Music, Grades 2-8

    I am a musician and educator born in Cologne, Germany. I hold a Bachelor degree in Music from the Conservatory of Amsterdam as well as a Master degree in Music with a concentration in Jazz performance from Queens College of New York. In addition, I recently graduated from Touro College with a Master’s degree in Early Childhood and Special Education. I have been working as a head teacher at a preschool in New York City for the past four years.

    In my music classrooms, my goal is to help students achieve both an aesthetic and academic understanding of music, as well as, practical music abilities and above all an appreciation for music.

  • Ingrid Ellis

    Assistant Teacher

    I am originally from Charlotte, NC but as a result of my mother’s work, moved to Pittsburgh,PA, then finally Hamburg, Germany as a child. There, I began attending the Helene Lange Gymnasium in the 6th grade and at the end, graduated with an Abitur.

    I then spent time in London, England before finally moving to NYC to be closer to family. Here, I attended Columbia University where I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in History and a Master’s from the Graduate School of Journalism. During the course of my studies, however, I married and by graduation I had given birth to twins. A few years later I had my third child. I chose to be a stay at home mom while the children were young, and was a very active parent volunteer at their elementary schools. We were the founding families of a new charter school, so I was involved in the classroom, as well as in organizational needs.

    In 2006, I began teaching Journalism and English Composition at CUNY, Kingsborough Community College, where I am currently still an Adjunct Professor. I have enjoyed teaching the diverse population at Kingsborough, where my main focus is on helping students to conduct fact based analysis and think critically about what they read and society in general, as well as helping them to express themselves more effectively and comfortably in writing.

    In February, 2021, I joined the German School Brooklyn where I am currently assisting in 2nd grade and offering German Language support in both 2nd and 3rd grade. I am enjoying the very different experience of working with young learners and am excited to be back in a German speaking environment and to also be in a position to share my unique perspective. I am looking forward to continuing to grow in and contribute to the GSB community.

  • Justyna Grabowska

    Assistant Teacher, Grades 2-3

    I was born in Poland where I studied Special Education. I believe that every child has the right and the ability to learn, even if their learning looks different than what you might expect. After I completed my Master’s Degree, I moved to Switzerland and lived there for six years. During this time, I worked with autistic people as well as mentally and physically disabled individuals. In 2011, I moved to NY and started caring for children for private families and worked as a preschool teacher for a cooperative play group. I am so pleased that this path led me to where I am now – a teacher’s assistant at GSB!

    Outside of school, I love to spend time with family and friends. I love to cook and try new healthy recipes. I love nature and farms, traveling, discovering new places and meeting new people. My motto: natural organic food, exercise, emotional health, air, and sunshine are the best medicine!

  • Yvonne Haussmann

    Grade 2 Class Teacher | German subjects

    My journey started in Balingen, a small town in the south of Germany. Throughout Highschool, I gained extensive experiences working with children, which ultimately led to my studies as a preschool teacher at university of education in Schwäbisch Gmünd. Pursuing a teaching opportunity in Kenia as well as gaining educational practice abroad in Braga, Portugal consolidated my decision to work in the educational field for young kids.

    Eventually I finished my 1st state exam in German, Maths, Sports Music and Arts in 2017 and thereafter taught for two executive years at a primary school in Stuttgart, where I also received my 2nd state exam, which is equal to the master degrees. I acquired profound experiences dealing with diverse groups of students in diverse settings – one aspect of my work in Germany was including foreign students into my classroom, getting them comfortable with the German language. An essential component for my big next step: Working at the German School in Brooklyn, supporting the students to develop a passion for learning and preparing them for everyday life to become independent. Having found such an incredible community far away from home in an amazing city is worth gold. I can not wait to grow in this amazing school with its inspiring atmosphere surrounded by incredible people.

  • Jessie Hernandez

    Assistant Teacher

    I am an experienced youth advocate and educator with 10 years of experience teaching and mentoring young people from diverse backgrounds in NYC, Kansas, and Missouri. As a youth advocate, I have a strong history in creating bonds with young people which has led to their growth socially, personally, and educationally. When working with young people I take a trauma informed approach based on active listening, open communication, relatability, trust, and safe boundaries. I use that approach to help young people find and engage in communities that make them feel welcomed. Over the years I have become a confidant and advocate for many young people, and I am proud that my work helped in the development of young artists, academics, community leaders, and athletes. When young people find their community and what they love, they can more readily strengthen the skills they need to be successful.

  • Gabrielle Jarvis

    Grade 1 Class Teacher | English subjects

    I’ve been living in Brooklyn for 6 years. I received my Bachelors Degree in Adolescent Education with a concentration in English at Pace University. This is my third year teaching and I am currently receiving my Masters Degree in Childhood Education at Hunter College. I’ve taught kindergarten, second and fifth grades. Teaching is my passion and I have worked with children since I was in high school.
    After three years in the classroom I have found that student-teacher relationships are extremely important to me. I love getting to know students inside and outside of the classroom. This kind of relationship helps children learn better. I believe in the whole child and meeting children where they are academically. I hope to continue this kind of work at GSB and I am beyond excited to start my third year of teaching here!

  • Brianna Jensen

    Grade 3 Class Teacher | English subjects

    I have a passion for teaching that has grown across a variety of contexts. After graduating with my BA in Psychology, I moved to Shanghai, China to teach English to elementary school students. I returned to the US for graduate school and received my MA in Elementary Inclusive Education. After working in various NYC public schools, I am excited to bring the knowledge and practices from various schools to GSB.

    I believe in including all students in a learning community that fosters both students’ social-emotional development and individual academic growth. Through inquiry and discussion, I hope to support students in developing a lifelong passion for learning, critical thinking skills, and independence. I am thrilled to be back at GSB for a second year!

  • Sasha King

    English, Social Studies, and Science, Grade 6-7

    I grew up in Brooklyn, New York and attended undergraduate college at Hunter earning a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature with a minor in Anthropology. After college, I joined the non-profit organization Citizen’s Schools, which works with struggling middle schools to extend the learning day and provide children with diverse experiences and twenty-first century skills. It was at Citizen’s Schools that I fell in love with intellectual work and relationship building that comes with teaching and began earning my Master’s in Teaching from the Relay Graduate School of Education. After my two year apprenticeship I began teaching at a public charter school in Crown Heights, where I learned so much about being a professional and leader.

    After four years I began searching for a school that shared more of my pedagogical beliefs, placed a high value on teaching the whole child, and valued and invested in teacher development. I am so happy to have found and joined the German School Brooklyn community.

  • Jana Kosancic

    Assistant Teacher

    In 2009 I graduated as a state certified educator – Erzieher – in Trier, Germany. I am currently achieving my degree in early childhood and management of social Institutions. I have more than 12 years experience of working with children ages 3 – 12 years. After a few years of working in Germany I decided to work in Luxemburg, where I mostly worked with special needs children. In 2014 I moved to New York and started to work in German schools with children between 2 and 5 years. This is my third year at GSB and my second year as a Kindergarten class teacher and Kindergarten Coordinator.

    I believe that our job as a teacher provides us with the great opportunity to learn from those who embrace life and I feel very fortunate to be surrounded by children with their imaginative way of seeing the world. I focus on supporting children in developing an independent personality as well as stimulating their physical, social emotional and cognitive development. I believe that the best way of raising children is being warm, having love for every individual and supporting them in their natural creativity and interests.

  • Yneilmar Leal

    Spanish, Grades 3-8

    I am an artist and educator from Caracas, Venezuela.

    I hold a Bachelor Degree in Graphic Design and Photography and was trained to teach Spanish as a second Language to kids 4-11 years old at Instituto Cervantes in New York.

    I have been teaching teens, adults and kids since 2002. I founded Nueva York Kiddos Spanish After-school in Brooklyn NY in 2016 with the mission to offer a creative environment where kids can explore and socialize while learning Spanish through hands-on projects, experiments, music and games.

    In my classes my goal is to teach Spanish to my students, expose them to different cultures and encourage them to embrace diversity. I absolutely love teaching, I learn from my students every day and I am truly grateful to be part of such a wonderful community.

  • Franziska Lingel

    German, Biology, History, Ethics in German, Grades 7-8

    I was born and raised in Germany, in a small city in the south of the country. During my time at the University of Education in Karlsruhe, I got the opportunity to study in the States from 2009 to 2010. This had a big impact of my life. It inspired me and raised interest in other cultures, approaches and school systems.

    After I finished my 1st state exam in English, German and Physical Education in 2013, I taught for 1 ½ years at a middle school where I received my 2nd state exam.
    In the last four years I taught at another middle school in Germany, where I gained lots of experience with diverse groups of students, teaching methods and in many other fields.
    Every year I teach I feel more grateful for having such a dynamic and responsible job. It has always been a pleasure to work with individuals, to help and see them grow, in character as well as intellectually. I am more than excited to be a member of GSB and I am very excited to be part of a positive development of the children.

  • Andrea Loefke

    Art, Grades 4-8

    I am a German-born, Brooklyn based artist and educator with a Masters degree in art and physical education from the University of Leipzig, and an MFA in sculpture from Ohio State University. I have lived and worked as an artist in the United States since 2000 and have taught at numerous art schools in New York City over the past 16 years, including Pratt Institute, School of Visual Arts and at various public elementary schools for the non-profit organization “Studio in a School.” I’ve had the pleasure of teaching Art at GSB to all grades since the school began in 2014.

    As an art teacher, I strongly believe that art is more than a skill; it’s a process of exploration and discovery and a way of thinking and communicating ideas effectively. My goal for each student is to think like an artist, to appreciate art, be an imaginative and critical thinker and to stick with an artwork until full refinement and complexity.

    As for my personal work, my vivid multimedia assemblages and works on paper in solo exhibitions have received critical recognition from a number of publications including Artforum, Sculpture, Brooklyn Rail, Frankfurter Allgemeine and Juliet. In 2009 I was commissioned to create a permanent installation for the SØR Rusche Collection in Berlin and received the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award in 2010. I have shown extensively in over forty exhibitions throughout the United States and Germany. In 2016 I worked on my first site-specific and permanent outdoor installation, Toss-Up in the forest of Darmstadt at the Walldkunstpfad and exhibited a new installation at the Ladenburger Kunstverein in Germany as well as at Smack Mellon in Brooklyn, NY.

    My work is found in numerous private collections and the Bezirksärztekammer (Karlsruhe, Germany).

  • Tina Petereit

    Grade 5 Class Teacher | German subjects

    Originally from a small town on the Baltic sea in the North of Germany, I studied Latin and German in Barcelona and Berlin, where I completed my 1st and 2nd state exams in both subjects.

    Since finishing my studies, I have gathered over 10 years of experience teaching grades 5 through 12. I started my career at a humanistic Gymnasium (middle and upper school) in Berlin, where I served as a class teacher for the grades 5-10, focused on building the language curriculum, and led the school exchange program in Rome.

    After love brought me to New York in 2016, I taught German, German as a second/foreign language, and Latin at the German International School New York in White Plains. I co-directed the German department there, directed the Latin program, and developed a robust Green School initiative that brought together parents, students, teachers, and staff.

    I am a very passionate educator. My enthusiasm for teaching stems from my investment in the pursuits of each individual student. I work hard to connect with students in a deep way, helping them to expand their academic horizons while also getting to know more about the world and about themselves.  I love being in the classroom, watching my students grow and thrive as a community of learners.

    After living in Queens for the last 4 years, I recently moved to Brooklyn with my family. I am so much looking forward to joining GSB and becoming a part of this wonderfully international and intercultural community.

  • Sarah Roussel

    Grade 5 Class Teacher | English subjects

    I am originally from New Orleans, Louisiana. I have a BFA from California College of the Arts in individualized study combining creative writing, mixed media, and photography. I am finishing my masters in Childhood Education 1-6 from Hunter College. My diverse professional experiences working in education range from teaching in a local kindergarten in a traditional classroom setting in Guangzhou, China, to teaching interdisciplinary arts and educational classes in Hong Kong and as Program Director of Backpacks and Binoculars, a school-aged childcare and educational company under the New York City Explorers Group in Downtown Brooklyn.

    My experiences studying in Jerusalem and Italy as well as living and working abroad have developed my passion for travel, cultural learning, and global education. The impact of my continued pursuit of new and challenging experiences in the world as well as my love for the arts informs my teaching philosophy and practices. I’m especially excited about designing hands-on learning experiences for my students, teaching them to think critically and to question.

    I‘m happy to be a part of the growing GSB community!

  • Bita Saeedi

    School Aide

    I graduated from New York University in 2020 with a degree in Psychology, as well as a minor in Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Social and Public Policy. I have tutored elementary school and middle school students and volunteered at after-school youth programs in the past, and am glad to take my skills into the classroom environment at GSB. While taking courses focused on children’s psychology, I made my goal pursuing a career working with young children. After coming to understand how vastly a child’s early experiences impact both their physical and mental development and even their mental health as adults, I realized the importance of having a positive early childhood education, which is my drive for wanting to work at a school. I feel incredibly fortunate to be working at GSB, in an environment that seeks to encourage and instill a passion for learning and an aptitude for kindness.

  • Thomas Schiffers

    Biology in German, German, History, Ethics, Physics, Grades 5-8

    Prior to joining  GSB I taught at the German School of Lisbon. There I had the pleasure to teach primary as well as secondary school, which was a great experience since I got to know so many different ways of learning and teaching. I’m so excited to be teaching at the German School Brooklyn and to immerse myself into this vibrant Brooklyn community, exploring different cultures has always been part of my life.

    I attended the University of Freiburg, Germany, where I obtained a degree in bilingual education and teaching in multi-cultural settings. I completed my teacher training “Referendariat” in Hamburg and went on to educational internships in Perú and Scotland, so – yes – I have many stories to tell.

    I also obtained a Montessori teaching diploma, which enriched my bilingual teaching tools tremendously and really changed the way I teach and approach a student. In particular, it gave me a deeper understanding of the importance of learning subject matter at its core and the importance of hands on activities inside and outside of school.

    My goal as a teacher is, to work towards building a classroom environment where every student feels safe, welcome, and is seen as an individual, that feels challenged and engaged as a learner.

  • Florentine Schreiber

    Social Emotional Coach

    Originally, I was born in Munich, Germany. But, short after having graduated, I decided to move to Florence, Italy, where I studied and completed my Bachelors and Masters degree in Developmental and School Psychology and additional training in Anthroposophic Art Therapy. During my studies, I have met my husband Nicolas who originally is from Buenos Aires, Argentina, and has been living in New York back then.

    My passion for diverse cultures, traditions and languages and my wish to live with my partner together has helped me in taking the decision to move to New York in 2009. Here, I continued specializing in Mental Health Counseling at Hunter College, CUNY and graduated in 2014. During these five years, I have been working with Kinderhaus, Pusteblume and Wortspiele as well as interned in school counseling at Brooklyn Friends School.

    Once graduated, I have opened my private practice as a Parent and Child Development Consultant and worked as a multi lingual child and family therapist at the Metropolitan Center for Mental Health.

    Through my comprehensive studies, my work experiences in clinical, private and school settings, and by being a mother of two children, I have developed a unique style. This approach combines a profound understanding for day-to-day parent, child and school challenges with a solution-focused comprehension of more intricate situations.

    I am very excited to continue my work as the Social Emotional Coach at GSB and to meet and support you and your children!

  • Sarah Sesin

    Class Teacher Grade 3 | German subjects

    I am a certified German High School Teacher with a 1st and 2nd state Exam in English, History and Home Economics.

    In Germany I worked at a public school teaching students between the ages of 10 and 17 with a focus on developing social and behavioural skills. Before earning my 1st state exam I lived in Australia for almost 9 months and traveled Southeast Asia where I gained valuable insights into different cultures as well as working in multicultural environments.

    This is my third year at GSB and this year I am a 3rd Grade Teacher teaching German, Math, Sachkunde and Ethics following the German curriculum.

    My goal is to ensure that every child receives the support needed in order to reach their full potential. I strive to create a safe and positive environment to promote strengthening students social, emotional and cognitive skills. I believe that as an Educator valuing and understanding the personality of each child as well as fostering a sense of responsibility and awareness of diversity has been a main focus in my work.

    I am a passionate, enthusiastic and motivated teacher who loves to be a part of the GSB community and enjoys working with the children and their parents.

  • Maximilian Shire

    Music, Grades K-1, ELL

    I was born in the United States and raised in Austria. Going to a Steiner School fostered my interest in many fields such as craft, communication and music. After finishing my apprenticeship in carpentry I started studying Medicine and Math in Graz and Vienna before I chose Music and Dance Education at the University Mozarteum in Salzburg. There I finished my Masters in Early Childhood Music Education and focused my final thesis on how to teach a second language with the help of music & movement. I put this into practice teaching English in a preschool in Barcelona for 2 years, using my own language-teaching program.

    In New York I’ve worked as a performer, music and German teacher (in preschool, music school and giving private lessons).

    I’m classically trained in piano, violin and percussion and love to make music in my free time. I also love being outdoors doing sports such as sailing/surfing, skiing or rock climbing.

  • Eric Siegel

    Math in English, Grades 6-8

    I have been a math educator for over 30 years as teacher, staff developer, and consultant. I have taught middle and high school math in New York City, Winnetka, Illinois, and a year in Costa Rica. For the past 12 years I have been supporting a wide variety of NYC public and private schools to develop high-quality math programs for their students. I have led district workshops in topics ranging from Mathematical Communication and Problem Solving to Techniques for Teaching Math to English Language Learners. I have also presented at many national math conferences and one international conference (ICME) in Hamburg, Germany.

    I take it as a personal challenge to develop a love of learning mathematics in my students, especially those students who have not yet discovered the joys of learning math. I take a problem solving approach, posing problems and facilitating student-led discussions of strategies to develop students’ conceptual understanding and their ability to tackle unfamiliar problems.

  • Nora Stephens

    Physical Education, 2-8, Dance/Yoga 2-5, Coordinator PAW, Director of Arts & Performance

    Nora currently teaches Dance and Yoga to Grade 2-6, K/1 in After School and also helps to organize the performances and arts program at GSB. Nora has been teaching dance and yoga to people of all ages for over 15 years and has enjoyed infusing her love of movement into the German School Brooklyn curriculum since its inception in 2014. She is committed to helping each student cultivate their own ideas, problem solve, think critically and work collaboratively.

    Nora has performed as an independent dancer for many years and her choreographic works have been presented both nationally and internationally. Among other qualifications, Nora received an MFA in Dance from Hollins University, Kids Yoga Teacher training at Karma Kids Yoga and Developmental Movement with Ellynne Skove. Nora continues to teach dance in the public schools through the nonprofit Together in Dance.

  • Amy Stiegler

    Kindergarten Class Teacher and ELL

    Amy studied at Sarah Lawrence College where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education, with a focus on Bilingual Eduction. She has 10 years of experience working with young children in a variety of educational settings, mainly German/English schools. She has worked at the Deutsche Preschool in White Plains, in Halle/Saale, Germany at a bilingual kindergarten, and most recently, as a Head teacher at Wortspiele Preschool in Brooklyn. Although she speaks fluent German, she is a native English speaker and will be teaching the Kindergarten students in the subjects of English and Science this year. She is currently finishing up her Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education at Hunter College.

  • Lisa Wernli

    Grade 1 Class Teacher | German subjects

    I’m a Swiss born teacher, who received my Bachelors Degree in Education and Sports in Basel. The last two years I was the head teacher for Kindergarten and Sports in an Elementary School in Switzerland. Prior to that I worked as a PE teacher on a hospital ship in West Africa. This experience, has exposed me to working in a multicultural environment, which emphasized inclusion.

    I am a highly motivated, enthusiastic and dedicated teacher, whose goal is to create an environment, where kids can develop and nurture to there maximum potential. Working with kids has always been my passion and I’m looking forward to continuously work with the GSB.

  • Erica Wickman

    Grade 2 Class Teacher | English subjects

    The daughter of a State Department officer, I spent much of my childhood living and learning in east Asia before settling down in Virginia to finish school and attend college. I earned my BA in Music at the College of William and Mary where I focused on vocal performance. After graduation, I began working as an assistant teacher at a nursery school and fell in love with teaching young learners. After five years of working in preschools, I returned to school to earn my Masters in Early Childhood Education at Lesley University with a focus on arts integration in the classroom. I then moved to Brooklyn to teach kindergarten for two years before joining the English team at GSB. I love bringing music, art, and movement into academic subjects and believe that the arts are fundamental to a well-rounded education.