Kyoko Uchida

Lead Montessori Teacher (Infant)

Ms. Uchida grew up in a small village in Japan that was surrounded by rice paddies and hills. When she graduated from high school, she followed her dream of coming to the United States to study child psychology. Upon her arrival in the U.S, she studied linguistics and human development at UC Davis.

Prior to joining Mission, she worked at traditional preschools until she encountered a Montessori school. Inspired to study Montessori, she earned her Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) diploma and master’s degree in education and has been working as a Montessori teacher with toddlers and infants for over ten years.

Ms. Uchida enjoys outdoor activities such as going to the beach and listening to the breeze in the woods. She also keeps her Japanese culture alive by practicing Kendo (Japanese fencing), traditional dance, tea ceremony, and calligraphy.


Georyana Morales


Georyana is originally from Granada, Nicaragua, where she received her degree in criminal law. Six years ago she moved to San Francisco to seek new opportunities for her and her family.

Georyana is a mother of two beautiful children and has discovered a deep love for working with children. She is currently attending City College of San Francisco and will soon complete her associate degree in child development.

In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, and having fun in our beautiful city.

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Haley Ameral

Assistant Teacher

Haley is originally from Aspen, Colorado. She recently relocated to San Francisco from Denver to be closer to family. In Denver she explored the early childhood education field working and learning in two very enriching Montessori schools.

Haley is very passionate about Montessori philosophy. She attended College of the Sequoias in Visalia, California and will soon complete her associate degree in Child Development. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, skateboarding, and attending yoga classes.


Miho Namba


Miho has been a Lead Montessori teacher in our infant program since 2014. She graduated from California Institute Integral Studies and pursued her bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary/Multiple Studies. She received her AMI Diploma (0-3) from Montessori Northwest in 2015. In addition to her work, she is a certified infant massage trainer. She enjoys cooking, art, and meditation.


Vicki Fong


Vicki was born and raised in Hong Kong and is bilingual in Cantonese and English. She has a bachelor's degree in early childhood education from San Francisco State University. Vicki believes that each child is unique and needs a secure and caring environment. Her favorite part about working with children in a Montessori setting is nurturing and observing their innate curiosity about the world.

In her spare time, she loves watching movies, shopping, spending time with her family, and traveling around the world. Vicki is very grateful for the opportunity to work at Mission Montessori!


Elena Punchin


Elena was born and raised in Peru. She completed her studies in early childhood education at the City College of San Francisco and worked in preschool classrooms at San Francisco Unified School District's Zaida Rodriguez Child Development Center for 14 years.

Elena is fluent in Spanish and intermediate in Cantonese. She likes cooking and, on sunny days, enjoys walking by the beach with her dog. Elena is very grateful for the opportunity to work for, care for, and support the children, parents and staff at Mission Montessori.

Elena was born and raised in Peru. She has 27 units in Early Childhood Education from the City College of San Francisco and prior to joining Mission Montessori, she worked in preschool classrooms at San Francisco Unified School District's Zaida Rodriguez Child Development Center for 14 years.

Elena is fluent in Spanish and intermediate in Cantonese. She enjoys cooking and walking her dog. Elena is very grateful for the opportunity to work for, care for, and support the children, parents and staff at Mission Montessori.

It drew me to Mission Montessori because I was interested to work with infants and eventually I being learning the philosophy of Maria Montessori; how importantly is to lay a foundation to encourage children to be independent and responsible humans being.


Keijahnea Cotton


Keijahnea is originally from Los Angeles where she grew up with five brothers and sisters. When Keijahnea's dad fell ill, she deferred university so she could take care of him. She is now back to studying criminal justice at City College of San Francisco and is aspiring to be a criminal defense lawyer. Her dream is to open her own law firm one day.
At Mission Montessori, Keijahnea loves working with children and is enjoying being a part of an amazing team that allows her to grow as a person and teacher. Keijahnea loves to dance, cook, write stories and poems in her free time.

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Felicia Fregoso


Felicia is passionate about early childhood education. Working with children is a natural fit for her creative, spirited, and compassionate personality. While attending Santa Clara University, Felicia worked at the on‐campus preschool, Kids on Campus. After graduating in 2013 with a B.S. in child and family studies, she moved to San Francisco to teach at Faces SF, a preschool providing low‐income families with quality childcare.

Felicia became attracted to Montessori because of how it honors the way children learn and develop. She enjoys seeing her students discover themselves and navigate the stages of development by way of their own interests. Felicia has her teaching diploma from the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) from Montessori Northwest.

In addition to teaching at Mission, Felicia enjoys to occasionally assist at Eureka Valley Arts studio, where children explore art and design their own projects. Some of her favorite things to do are sew, craft, write, photograph, and partake in pretty much any artistic medium. She is thrilled to be a part of Mission and to be offering children a quality Montessori education.


Aysha Shaikh


Aysha is from Karachi, Pakistan, where she earned her B.A. She moved to the U.S. 20 years ago and is the proud mother of two wonderful children. Aysha’s interest in Montessori led her to also complete a Montessori assistant teacher certificate.

Aysha has been with our campus since we first opened in 2015. Prior to joining Mission, she worked as an air hostess for the PIA and taught primary school in Pakistan. She has been working in childcare since 2005, and her passion for children inspired her to go back to school and to study early childhood education.

In her free time, Aysha enjoys shopping, reading books, listening to music, cooking, and spending time with her family.


Miles Ausen


Miles, originally from Seattle, started working with children right out of high school as a nanny for an 8-year-old and an 8-month-old. After a few years as a nanny, he started work for a family with a young child on the autism spectrum and taking early childhood education courses. Inspired by this work and his studies, Miles decided to become an applied behavioral analysis therapist, working with children on the autism spectrum, as well as a nanny for a family of five.

Miles first learned about Montessori in college and really connected with the emphasis on independence, developing one’s sense of self, and practical life lessons. He loves the Montessori approach and hopes to learn more about how to apply it to children with special needs.

In his spare time, Miles likes exploring Oakland and San Francisco, eating, and walking along the coastline with his dog, Domino.


Sylena Coleman


Sylena began working with children and families at the Boys and Girls Club in Petaluma, CA nestled in the heart of Sonoma County. Her love for nature blossomed while growing up in such a beautiful county. After nannying for 5 years she discovered her passion for early childhood development and is currently working towards earning a bachelor’s degree in this rewarding field.

What drew Sylena to Montessori education is the freedom it gives children. She is fascinated with what all children are capable of achieving at such young ages when we give them the freedom, environment, and care to do so.

In her free time, Sylena enjoys singing, exploring the Bay Area, art, poetry, hiking and spending time with loved ones.

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Daniela Amestica


Daniela was born and raised in Santiago, Chile, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education with a minor in English in 2011. She began working in a preschool focused primarily on teaching English as a foreign language, and it quickly became one of her favorite subjects, which sparked her interest to travel to the United States and participate in a cultural exchange program. And that is when she met her now-husband, and they got married in San Francisco.  

Prior to joining Mission Montessori, Daniela has spent the majority of her time teaching in preschool. She has a natural love of teaching and enjoys watching children reach their greatest potential. In her free time, she enjoys movies, drawing, cooking, exercising, traveling, spending time with her husband, and catching up with family and friends.