Main Campus Teachers & Paraprofessionals
Mrs. Shannon Weilenmann is one of our 4th-grade teachers. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Northern Arizona University. She has been in the educational field for 18 years, 7 years as a paraprofessional, and 11 as a lead teacher at Acorn. Mrs. Weilenmann has completed the SEI training amongst many others. Her favorite part of teaching is seeing students grow and master new skills. When Mrs. Weilenmann is not in the classroom; you can find her camping (usually by a lake).
Ms. Hannah Everhart joined the Acorn Family in July of 2018. This is her 5th year of teaching at Acorn Montessori Charter School. Ms. Everhart has 7 years of teaching experience in a variety of grade levels, ranging from K-6, this year she will be working with our fourth grade. She graduated from Chapman University in 2011 with a BA in Liberal Studies and a Minor in Art. Ms. Everhart is currently continuing her education by completing a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education at Liberty.
Ms. Amanda Wallace is one of our 5th grade teachers. She received her Associates of Arts in Elementary Education from Arizona Western College and a Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education from Northern Arizona University. Ms. Wallace has been teaching for 6 years and this year will be her third year with Acorn. Her favorite part of teaching is witnessing the “light bulb moment” when a student achieves a goal or grasps a concept they have been struggling with.
Mrs. Karen Morrison is a middle school paraprofessional. This will be her second school year with Acorn. Mrs. Morrison has a Bachelors in Health and Exercise Science with a Teacher Certification from Rowan University. She has been in the educational field for 8 years, previously as a P.E. teacher. She enjoys helping students prepare for their futures.
Mr. Adam is the lead teacher in our 6th grade this year. This will be his third full year with Acorn. However, he has been a paraprofessional for 11 years! He earned his bachelor’s degree in Applied Psychology from the University of Phoenix. He enjoys working in a school setting because it is a new experience every day. When he is not at work, he enjoys playing video games and driving.
Mrs. Tiffini Schwanderlik is our Dean of Students and Wellness Director. She has been with Acorn for 6 years and in the education field for 8 years. She attended NAU for her Bachelors degree and is a recent graduate from Capella University with a Masters in School Counseling. Additionally, she has her Highly Qualified Teaching certificate. Mrs. Tiffini is passionate about promoting social and emotional well-being in each classroom at Acorn.
Miss Renee Beaumont is one of our paraprofessionals. She just completed her associates degree at Yavapai College. She started mid-year for the 2020/2021 school year and looks forward to starting the new year. Miss Renee also works with the movement “1pillcankill” to further educate young teens on the dangers of synthetic fentanyl. In addition, she is also a part of a National Honors Society of Leadership and Success. Her favorite part of working with students is “Being able to mold young children and adults into strong, charismatic individuals who seek success and feel confident while doing so”.
Middle School Social Studies
Mr.Don Gagnon is our middle school Social Studies teacher. Mr. Gagnon received his Masters in Elementary Education from the University of Phoenix. He has been in the educational field for 13 years 3 of which have been with Acorn. He has also completed his SEI training. Mr. Gagnon loves helping students learn and experience new things. He enjoys fishing, hiking, camping, and spending time with his family.
Mr. Tom Flores is one of our middle school paraprofessionals. He is currently working towards his Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Development. He has been in the educational field for 6 years, 3 of which have been with Acorn. His work in the behavioral health field provided him with skills he has been able to translate to the classroom. He strives to connect with students and build their educational foundation. In his free time, Mr. Flores enjoys basketball, video games, and raising his children.
Middle School Math
Mrs. Kati Young is our middle school Math teacher. She received her Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education from NAU. Mrs. Young also has her Middle School ELA and SEI endorsements. She is going into her 6th year with Acorn. Prior to teaching she gained many skills through her work with developmentally disabled adults in group home settings. She loves working with students and “getting a front seat to watching their growth”!
Mr. Matt Rice is our Wellness Paraprofessional and Athletic Director. Prior to joining the Acorn team he worked in law enforcement. Mr. Rice has been in the school setting for 10 years as a School Resource Officer and a coach for athletics up to the varsity level. After retiring from law enforcement, he came to Acorn and has been with us for 5 years. Working with children and watching them accomplish their goals and overcome adversity along the way is Mr. Rice’s favorite part of being an educator.
Middle School Science
Ms. Shauna McKay is our middle school Science teacher. She has been with Acorn for 10 years. Ms. McKay earned her Bachelors of Science in Elementary Education from Northern Arizona and is certified in middle grades science. Seeing students grow into young adults is her favorite part of being a teacher.
Mrs. Felicia Mathis is one of our talented paraprofessionals. She earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Early Childhood Development from Purdue University Global. She has been with Acorn for 4 years and has worked with students from preschool to 4th grade. Ms. Felicia is excited to continue working with kids and watching them learn and grow. In her free time she enjoys many hobbies including camping, reading, and spending time with family.
Middle School ELA
Miss. Lucy Larrondo is a paraprofessional that recently began working with Acorn. She is currently going to Yavapai College to get her Associates of Art degree. After completing her Associate’s, she will be attending Arizona State University to get her Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education. Miss. Larrondo has learned so much working with Acorn and loves seeing the middle schoolers be the best they can be. Miss. Larrondo enjoys taking her dog on hikes, spending time with her family and reading books.
Honors & Gifted Education
Ms. Gretchen Whittaker is the Gifted Education teacher at our Main Campus. This will be her 7th year at Acorn, and has had experience teaching in many grades with this being her second year working with the TAG students. Ms. Whittaker earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from University of Phoenix and recently completed her gifted education endorsement from Estrella Mountain College. Ms. Whittaker is the master of project-based learning and loves seeing students figure out things on their own with the tools and skills she has helped them build. In her free time, she loves to be outdoors camping, hiking, and kayaking with her family. She also loves volunteering as a scout leader and hunting down antiques to buy and sell.
Miss Jamie King is our Behavioral Interventionist in the Wellness Center. Miss Jamie is a veteran of the United States Airforce. She has earned her Bachelor’s degree in Human Behaviors from Northern Arizona University and is currently working towards a Master’s in School Counseling from Grand Canyon University. She has been with Acorn for 3 years. Miss Jamie enjoys lifting and camping in her freetime.
Ms. Cristin Maldarella is a middle school paraprofessional. She got her Associates of Arts from Yavapai College and is working towards her bachelors degree in English at ASU Online. She’s worked in education for two years, starting with one year working in a preschool. This is her first year at Acorn, but she spent the last year working as a paraprofessional in another middle school. She’s excited to work with everyone this year, and see the students learn and grow.