Keturah Collins
Keturah Collins
Owner, Director, Montessori Teacher
Birthplace: Manhattan, Kansas
Education: B.A. in Child Development, University of Alabama

Keturah is the owner/director of Children’s House Montessori School, and is the lead Montessori teacher in the Sunrise Room.

Keturah’s career in early childhood education spans more than 30 years. After graduating magna cum laude from the University of Alabama, she earned her Montessori teaching certificate from Montessori World Educational Institute in San Louis Obispo, California. In addition, she has served as a field consultant for interns taking their Montessori training, and has attended the Course for Montessori School Management at the Center for Montessori Teacher Education in New York. She has been in the Montessori classroom for more than 25 years, and has worked in a “traditional” preschool setting for several years as well.

Keturah has been married to Henry Collins for 44 years and they have two grown children. Henry’s career in the U.S. Army provided the opportunity to live in Germany, Korea, and Norway, and travel extensively in Europe and Asia.  Keturah enjoys sharing these cultures and experiences with the children in her classroom. She also loves nature and teaching understanding and appreciation for all living things.

"Owning my own Montessori school was a dream of mine for many years that finally came true in 2003 with the opening of Children's House.  It is so satisfying to work with the families and staff that have been drawn to our special place.  It is obvious that each child, parent, and staff member brings their talents, creativity and love here, making me proud to be the owner of Children's House."

Karen Disney
Karen Disney
Assistant Director, Montessori Teacher
Birthplace: Johannesburg, South Africa
Education: B.A. in English, George Mason University

Karen (pronounced KAH-rin) is the Assistant Director of Children's House and the lead Montessori teacher in the Sunset Room.  In 2002 she received her Montessori Early Childhood Credentials from the American Montessori Society following her training at the Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies (IAMS) in Silver Spring, Maryland.  Karen has also served for several years as a consultant for IAMS, mentoring and evaluating interns who are in the process of becoming certified Montessori teachers.

Karen has been with Children's House since day one!  She has watched the school grow from a tiny ten-student classroom to the vibrant, loving community that it is today.

Originally from South Africa, Karen moved to the United States with her family in 1990. She has lived in the Northern Virginia area ever since and currently resides in Leesburg with her husband, Pernell, son, London, and twins Jillian and Miles. 

"Over the years I have been lucky enough to see inside many different schools, observe many different teachers, and visit many different classrooms.  I am luckier still to be a part of Children's House, which is, in my opinion, more than just a school, but an extended family and a community built on a foundation of respect, collaboration, energy, and love.  Helping children discover who they are, watching young families grow, and working on a daily basis with teachers who are dedicated, creative, and inspiring, are just a few of the reasons I look forward to coming to work each day."

Marierose Hoang
Marierose Hoang
Montessori Teacher
Birthplace: Saigon, Vietnam
Education: B.S. in Business Administration, Berry College
MBA in International Business, University of South Carolina

Marierose Hoang is a Montessori teacher in the Sunrise Room.  After 25 years of working in the corporate world at AT&T, Marierose began her "semi-retired" job at Children's House as a part-time teacher assistant in 2006.  She loved this new second career so much that she decided to become certified as a Montessori Teacher at the Northeast Montessori Institute at Belmont Greene.  She has been with Children's House for the last 8 years.

Marierose was born in Saigon, Vietnam and has been married to Lai Dang for 35 years.  Lai is a CFO for a joint venture company in Vietnam.  They have a daughter, Danielle, an MD resident at the Department of Family and Community Medicine, Jefferson Family Medicine Associates in Philadelphia, PA.  One of Marierose's goals in life is to be able to visit as many places as possible around the world and to share it with the children.  In her spare time, she also tutors autistic children in her home.

"Working with children at Children's House has allowed me to be a humble, growing person, one who is always striving toward my own potential.  I have gained and continue to gain a realistic knowledge of my own self and an understanding my capabilities and behaviors."

Farzana Kaleem
Farzana Kaleem
Montessori Teacher
Birthplace: Karachi, Pakistan
Education: B.S. in Micro-Biology, University of Karachi

Farzana is a teacher in the Sunrise Room. She received her Early Childhood Montessori credentials from AMS after completing her training at Northern Virginia Montessori Institute in 2011. She has worked in the field of education in her home country of Pakistan and in the United States before discovering the Montessori philosophy. Children are her passion, and creating a loving environment to foster their independent growth is her mission.

Farzana and her family moved to the United States in 1995. Her husband, Mohsin, is a loan officer and part owner of Spectra Funding. They have 2 boys, and live in Lansdowne, VA.

"I chose to join CHMS because of the friendly atmosphere I found here. The teachers are skillful and the school is well-managed. I hope to learn a lot and enhance my career opportunities.”

Zohra Shoaib
Zohra Shoaib
Montessori Teacher
Birthplace: Karachi, Pakistan
Education: B.S. in Science and Education, University of Karachi

Zohra Shoaib is a Montessori teacher in the Sunset Room.  She completed her Montessori teacher training in 2011 at Northern Virginia Montessori Institute in Ashburn, VA.  She has been working in the field of education for more than ten years and taught elementary school in Karachi before coming to the United States.

Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Zohra moved to the U.S. in 2006.  She is married and has three children.  She enjoys cooking and reading, and likes to learn about different cultures and languages.

“I love children, and watching them learn and develop each day is fascinating. I love my job, my little fellows, and my co-workers.  I feel honored to be the part of the Children’s House community.”

Asma Salman Usmani
Asma Salman Usmani
Montessori Teacher Assistant
Birthplace: Karachi, Pakistan
Education: B.A. in Philosophy, French, and Economics, University of Karachi

Asma is a teacher assistant in the Sunrise room. She discovered her zeal for teaching 17 years ago when she dropped her son, now 27, at his first day of Montessori school in her hometown of Karachi, Pakistan. That was the beginning of a beautiful journey that has molded her into the person she is today.

She began working as a teacher’s aid at a reputable Montessori school in Karachi in 1999, after which she decided to expand her horizon and became a Kindergarten teacher, a position she loved and retained for many years. Subsequently, she ran a private Montessori school from her home and within a few years decided to give back to society by joining a non-government organization, where she used her skills to teach children who did not have means of receiving an education. After moving to the United States January, 2015, she worked as a teacher at Kumon before joining Children’s House in June 2016. She is the newest member of our Family!

Born in Karachi, Pakistan, Asma is married and has 2 boys and a girl. Hassaan, 27, is an accountant and Ayaan,15, is a sophomore at South Lakes High School. Maaham, 20, is a junior at George Mason University acquiring a degree in Economics and Psychology. Asma loves the outdoors, and is an ardent traveler who has had the privilege of visiting various countries. She loves learning new things every day from the people around her.

“Maria Montessori once said, “Within the child lies the fate of the future.” I have always held onto these words dearly and used them as a guiding light to help me in my teaching career. My passion for teaching blossoms from my love for children. Their innocence and desire to discover are a few of the many reasons that I chose this career path. I have had the privilege of gaining experience from various prestigious educational institutions over the last 17 years from my home country, Pakistan. I hope to dedicate my time and effort here at Children’s House to help the children grow into intelligent, strong and independent individuals. For myself, I aspire to excel in the field of Montessori education, with the help of the wonderful professional staff and the children at Children’s House.”

Cinthia Drake
Cinthia Drake
Office Manager
Birthplace: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Education: Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, George Mason University

Cinthia Drake is the Office Manager and Admissions Director of Children’s House. She worked for 3 years as an administrative assistant at World Wildlife Fund and 8 years as a Montessori Assistant Teacher at Montessori Country School in Herndon, VA, leading her to love the Montessori philosophy.

Cinthia was born in Sao Paulo, and grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She came to the U.S. with her family in 1989 and married in 1992. She has two children: a daughter in college and a son in high school. Both of her children attended a Montessori school for pre-school and kindergarten. Cinthia is a movie aficionado, loves to read, loves to tell stories to the children and enjoys coloring for adults.

"One of the best decisions I have made as a parent when my children were very young was enrolling them in a Montessori pre-school and kindergarten program. As I became more familiar with the Montessori philosophy through my years of working as a teacher assistant, my admiration only grew as I explored the inner workings of this incomparable method of education. At Children's House Montessori School, I am fortunate to experience the Montessori environment I love so much in an amazing setting, surrounded by incredibly skilled, knowledgeable, kind and utterly professional Montessori teachers. It is a privilege to be part of such a committed and all-around awesome team of individuals."


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