Svenja Donlon

Svenja Donlon

Svenja Donlon

Faculty, Grades

Svenja was born in Germany to a New Zealand Mother and a German Father. She spent most of her childhood in New Zealand making tree houses in the bush, sandcastles on the beach and cookies in the kitchen, and attending a variety of schools including a Waldorf School. In 2012, she graduated from university in Wellington, New Zealand with a Bachelor of Arts in German and History and a Graduate Diploma of Teaching. After teaching in a New Zealand public school for three years, she was drawn to the artistic, caring, healing education she experienced as a child and undertook a year-long training to become a Waldorf teacher at Taruna Essential College in 2014. Svenja then spent time traveling around New Zealand volunteering on organic farms. It was during this time that she met her Vermonter husband, and ventured across the globe to join him. She enjoyed her time at Orchard Valley Waldorf school in her role as a long-term substitute and later as an assistant in the kindergarten and aftercare teacher, and feels very fortunate to now be guiding an energetic and inspiring group of first graders in their grade school journey. Svenja strives to cultivate a warm, loving and empathetic classroom in which students are both challenged and nurtured. Svenja lives in Greensboro with her husband, young dog, and elderly cat. She loves walking, swimming, baking, sewing, and generally making things beautiful.

Claudia Reinh​ardt

Claudia Reinh​ardt

Claudia Reinhardt

Faculty, Grades

Claudia grew up in a small Bavarian village where she enjoyed a wonderful childhood of roaming the woods. She graduated from pediatric nursing school in Nuremberg, Germany, in 1995 and was drawn to the creativity of the Waldorf philosophy when her now teenage sons were young children. She started teaching at the Waldorf School of Louisville in 2002, first as a German teacher, later also leading the Parent-Child program. Claudia completed her Waldorf teacher training at Rudolf Steiner College in 2007. From 2008 to 2016 Claudia successfully journeyed through grades one to eight with a vibrant class of amazing students at the Richmond Waldorf School in Virginia. Claudia is deeply committed to offering a culturally diverse curriculum and to promoting inclusiveness in the classroom. She loves to read and share stories from around the world. Knitting with heirloom yarns and drinking coffee help her maintain her equilibrium.

 

Kate Camilletti

Kate Camilletti

Kate Camilletti

Handwork Teacher and Lower Grades Woodworking Teacher

Kate grew up in West Virginia's Northern Panhandle, mostly following her older siblings into the woods. As the youngest child she learned early to pay attention, observe how things are done, then do. Perhaps the same can be said of Kate's introduction to teaching. At first, she assisted Sue Cheyenne, Orchard Valley's original Handwork Teacher. Later, Kate also assisted Meg Scherbatskoy with Handwork, Heinz Rathmann with Woodwork, and Jessica Rubin with Earthcrafts. After nearly ten years of assisting she began the Applied Arts Training at the Fiber Craft Studio in Chestnut Ridge, NY, finishing in March 2017. 

Kate holds a BA in Archaeology from Boston University, working in the field following graduation in 1991. After traveling the lower 48 states in a small camper with Paul Betz, they settled in Central Vermont in 1995. Kate built a pottery studio and made functional stoneware while gaining vegetable farming experience on the crews of local farms. She helped Paul establish a small farm operation on an old hill farm in Woodbury. Their two children have grown up attending OV and the Montpelier Farmers Market.

Kelly Davis

Kelly Davis

Kelly Davis

On the Land Teacher

Kelly grew up in Pomfret, Vermont and earned a BS in Environmental Science from the University of Vermont. She has spent time living and working with children, growing food, and exploring wild places in Washington, Patagonia, the Virgin Islands and across the Northeast. She has a passion for the fusion between agriculture and wilderness and in the connection between humans and their environment. Kelly is excited to dig in to her role at Orchard Valley through immersing students in their surroundings with creativity, games, exploration, nurture, and wonder. When not teaching, Kelly can be found traveling the landscape on skis, bike, canoe, or foot, working in the garden, or knitting.

Magali Harper

Magali Harper

Magali Harper

French Teacher

Magali is from Quebec City, and moved to Montpelier in 2012. She received a BA in Elementary Education in 2008 and is a certified K-6 teacher. French is her native language, having been born and raised in Quebec. Her experience teaching French was in schools where French was a 2nd, 3rd or 4th language for the students and the entire curriculum was taught in French. Magali loves working with her students at Orchard Valley Waldorf School!

Katie Trautz

Katie Trautz

Katie Trautz

Strings and Middle School Choir Teacher

Katie Trautz (www.katietrautz.com) is a native Vermont fiddler who has toured nationally and internationally sharing traditional music and original folk songs. Katie plays fiddle, guitar and banjo crossing genres with her numerous ensembles. She has studied with some of the greatest fiddle players in the US including Dirk Powell, Pete Sutherland, David Greely and Bruce Molsky. Katie has released a number of albums in the past seven years with her various bands (Mayfly, Wooden Dinosaur, Kick em Jenny, and more). Katie is the co-founder of the non-profit folk music school ‘Summit School of Traditional Music and Culture’ based in Montpelier, VT. Following her 8-year directorship at the Summit School, she became the Executive Director of Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph, VT. Following the release of her book 'American Harmony Singing: Kid Songs' in the fall of 2016, she decided to return to teaching fiddle lessons from her home in Vermont, while raising her new baby son.

Heinz Rathmann

Heinz Rathmann

Heinz Rathmann

Woodworking Teacher

Heinz lives in Braintree with his partner, Ellen, and their dog, Charlie. He is originally from Germany, but has lived the last 25-plus years in Vermont, a state that he has fallen in love with. Heinz discovered the gift of woodworking at the age of fourteen. After college and an apprenticeship in Germany, Heinz entered the Civil Service and introduced woodworking to folks needing healing therapy from drug abuse. Following his arrival in Vermont, Heinz began his work in the local Waldorf schools among others. He has taught at the Green Mountain School, Wellspring Waldorf School, Upper Valley Waldorf School, Montpelier High School and others. One of his most treasured projects is the Peace Monument next to the Kellogg-Hubbard Library in downtown Montpelier. In addition to teaching, Heinz is a professional woodworker who crafts beautiful cabinetry.

Jada Berg

Jada Berg

Jada Berg

Little Lambs Director and Lead Teacher

Jada earned a degree in Education and Creative Art Therapy from Goddard College and has been teaching for over a decade, in addition to teacher mentoring. She worked as an Early Childhood teacher and School Cook at Green Valley School, a nature-based Waldorf School in Putney, VT. One of Jada’s passions is holistic healing, including nutrition and herbalism, and she has her own healing practice, Golden Spiral Healing. She is currently finishing a three-year certification program in Biodynamic Cranio Sacral Therapy. Jada is the co-founder of Northern Lights, a Women’s Singing Community. In 2013, she was elected to the board of directors of Circle of Women International. Jada’s multifaceted range of experience make her a dynamic and creative teacher with a focus on progressive experiential heart-centered education honoring the individual. 

Peggy Roche

Peggy Roche

Peggy Roche

Apple Tree Kindergarten

Peggy has been in a Waldorf Early Childhood classroom since 2003. Having initially been drawn to the beauty of the Waldorf Early Childhood classroom and the artistic, soulful quality of Waldorf education, Peggy especially enjoys the laughter and joy of sharing snack time together and creating handwork with little ones. She studied fiber arts in college, earning a Master of Fine Arts, and has always believed in the gift of creating beauty for our world. Peggy has traveled extensively in West Africa, Asia and Europe. She taught preschool in South Korea and there her love of the small child was born. She and her husband Moss enjoy camping, reading, and going out to eat with their daughter, Maeve and their son, Rowan.

Stephanie Hoelscher

Stephanie Hoelscher

Stephanie Hoelscher

Director and Lead Teacher

Stephanie Hoelscher is director and lead teacher at the Child’s Garden. She came to Orchard Valley in 2010 when she started the Apple Blossom program, serving very young children. Stephanie received her certification in Waldorf Early Childhood education from Sunbridge and began her Waldorf work with young children at a charter Waldorf School in Phoenix, AZ where she taught in a large, mixed-aged kindergarten. Stephanie finds that her past training as a cultural anthropologist deepens the observational skills important to her work as a teacher and is deeply committed to creating a learning environment where the young child’s need for play, movement, and practical work can find its truest expression. Most recently Stephanie has started an advanced training course in therapeutic movement in order to bring new pedagogical insights to her mixed-aged class.