Meet us

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Sarah Stone, PhD

Executive Director

Sarah Stone, the founder and Exec. Director of Wonderbloom, has a PhD in early childhood development and has spent over 16 years teaching and supervising early childhood programs including Parents As Teachers and Early Head Start. In addition, Sarah has trained in nature-based education approaches. She has incorporated her extensive knowledge of early childhood development with principles of nature-based learning to create the underlying philosophy and structure of Wonderbloom.

 

While in graduate school, Sarah's research focused on understanding the development of empathy in young children. She learned that empathy in children leads to better prosocial interactions, higher morality, less self-harm, and less violence in communities. Because of this, Sarah incorporates empathy-building techniques into Wonderbloom's curriculum.

Sarah has two little ones, ages 8 years and 4 years. She loves to take them on adventures both in Utah and abroad.  Sarah also loves to spend extra time volunteering; you'll find her at Sundance Film Festival each Winter.

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Melissa West

Director 

Nat'l Geographic Educator Certified

Valuing imagination and creativity, nature-based learning and curiosity, Melissa brings 14 years of experience in education and administration. Motivated by nature's ability to promote an unhurried childhood, Melissa left private school teaching to educate her four children at home and in the woods. She created and led multiple nature-based education co-ops in Maryland. Melissa excels at energizing others, turning plans into action, communication, organization, and authentic connection while leading and teaching.

Melissa has 4 children that love to explore and go on adventures with her!

Bri Matthews 

Classroom Teacher

Born and raised in the beautiful mountains of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Bri learned to love and appreciate the outdoors because her parents encouraged her to explore outside as much as they could.

 

Bri studied environmental studies and education studies at Ithaca College where she graduated in 2018. Her experiences in the environmental and education departments helped her realize that she wanted to pursue a career in environmental education.

Bri has been in Salt Lake for just over a year and is in love so far. When she is not working, Bri enjoys playing outside, catching early trams, hiking in the mountains, and traveling all over the world.

Tenisha Anderson

Classroom Teacher

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Rebecca (Becca) Maxwell

Classroom Teacher

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Auriana (Ana) Flinders

Classroom Teacher/Admin

Becca loves being on the farm in Wisconsin

where she was born and raised, but loves to

travel, and has explored the U.S. and several

European countries. Becca ran Cross Country

in college while studying Enviro Science, then

traveled up the North Shore of Lake Superior

where she received a graduate degree in Enviro Education and Sustainability at

Wolf Ridge Enviro Learning Center while teaching children from all over the Midwest.

 

She can be found carving wood, knitting,

or taking photos most days and loves animals.

Becca's passion is to bring excitement and a new perspective to place-based, immersed learning environments! 

Ana grew up in Spanish Fork, Utah and

 she claims that "the mountains raised her"

as any free-time she had was spent outdoors with friends and family. She graduated from the UofU in 2020 with a degree in Family, Community, and

Human Development with an emphasis on Child Life.

She has always felt strongly connected to two things: children’s development and nature. She has great passion for the environment and shares that with the children of Wonderbloom.

 Tenisha has a passion for seeing children thrive in their own element driven by being outside and exploring everything around them. She has joined Wonderbloom in hopes to help curiosities bloom and to foster a connection with each other, themselves and our ecosystem.

Tenisha has Montessori experience, is trained in social emotional competence and inclusion and has her Forest School Leader Training Certificate.

She will use her expertise as an urban farmer running an urban garden as well as a community garden at her local mosque, to help our studetn in the garden!

She moved here from Colorado in December 2020 with her family.

Are you interested in joining our team? Apply here