Our Staff


 


 
 

Kate Moody, Learning Styles Specialist, Co-Teacher for Tadpoles and Polliwogs

My name is Kate Moody, and I serve as the Learning Styles Specialist and Co-Teacher for Tadpole and Polliwog Classes at the Preschool. This is my sixth year teaching children at the Preschool.  I hold a Master's degree in Special Education from Johns Hopkins University.

I live in Washington, DC with my husband and four children. I love spending time at the beach and cheering on the many sports teams that my family belongs to.  I believe it is extremely important to recognize the gifts of each individual child. I teach with a focus on educating the whole child while having FUN together.



Lauren Ambrosini, Classroom Teacher for Frogs

My name is Lauren Ambrosini and I'm excited to join The Community Preschool of the Palisades as a Frog Classroom Teacher. I have more than 20 years experience teaching young learners and specializing in early literacy instruction. I hold a BA in Psychology and a Master's in Teaching from Manhattanville College. I look forward to becoming a part of the vibrant and caring community at the Palisades Preschool.
 
 

Karima Benamri, Assistant Teacher for Frogs

My name is Karima Benamri and I am pleased to be in the Frog Class for another exiting year, as the assistant teacher. I have been in this wonderful community for more than 10 years working for some delightful local families as a caregiver, and as French and Arabic tutor. I’m so excited to be back at the wonderful Community Preschool of the Palisades, where I have taught since 2011.

I am a mother and my child is - as every child is - a gift! I have lived in the States for more than 17 years, but originally I’m from Morocco. I speak three languages fluently: English, French, and Arabic. I hope to be able to share all these languages with the children throughout the school day.

I love to cook, especially Moroccan food. I love to travel; my daughter and I travel every summer. It gives us the opportunity to discover other cultures and traditions. I appreciate the opportunity of being with your children, and I look forward to having a wonderful school year.

 
 

Edlamar Macedo, Co-Teacher for Tadpoles & Polliwogs

Originally, I am from Brazil, but I now live in Reston, VA with my husband and two beautiful children Amanda (class of 1998) and Carolina (class of 2006). I LOVE the sunshine, especially at the beach, and even more so when my children are with me. I love to go dancing, to eat, and to be with close friends. And I enjoy a good cup of coffee no matter what time it is!

 
 

Miriam Cantrell, Assistant Teacher for Tadpoles & Polliwogs

I am originally from Brazil. I love the food, my friends and family there. I am so happy to work at the Preschool. I have been here since 2001. The most enjoyable part is watching the kids talk and play with each other. It is amazing to watch them grow and learn throughout the year. I love listening to and sharing Brazilian music with the children. We have a great time singing and dancing together!

 
 

Tina Palanca, Classroom Teacher, Extended Play Program Coordinator

My name is Tina Palanca. I am pleased to work with all of the children at The Community Preschool of the Palisades, supporting each class and running the Extended Play Program.  I grew up in the Philippines and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of the Philippines. In 2014, I earned my Master’s Degree in Education from Marymount University. This is my third time around at The Community Preschool of the Palisades, and I’m thrilled to be working here again! 

Preschool is the best place to integrate arts, music, science, literature, and math while developing social skills, having fun, and enjoying the rejuvenating spirit of children.  

 

 
 

Dory Owen, Co-Teacher for Dragonflies, Green Team Coordinator

Hello, my name is Dory Owen and I am a Co-Teacher in the Dragonfly Class and the Green Team Coordinator. I have worked at the Community Preschool of the Palisades since 2010. I have my degree in Elementary Education and am taking classes towards my Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education. I have worked in a variety of school settings and museums and have taught children ages one through twelve. My favorite activities to share in the classroom are process art and cooking/sensory projects. I also love to sing and read stories. My favorite thing about working at the Community Preschool of the Palisades is being able to provide experiences based on what the children are interested in and setting the stage for creative learning to take place. I truly enjoy watching the Dragonflies have a-ha moments and discovering along with them!

 
 

Janel McTaggart, Co-Teacher for Dragonflies

Hello, my name is Janel McTaggart and I am a Co-Teacher in the Dragonfly Class. I have worked at the Community Preschool of the Palisades since 2013. I have a Master of Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Working with children and youth has been my passion for over 15 years. My experience ranges from classroom teaching to after school programs to summer camps and more! I have a great love for education with an emphasis on arts and literacy. Originally, I am from Pittsburgh. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, writing, and creating art. I also love to hike, bike, do yoga and travel as much as possible. I have been around the world including India, Vietnam, South Africa, and Ireland.      

 
 

Meghan Abrams, Office Administrator

My name is Meghan Abrams, and I am thrilled to work in the office at The Community Preschool of the Palisades. My background is in marketing and communications; I have a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. However, my life experience raising my three amazing children is what best qualifies me for this role! My son is an alumnus of the Dragonfly Class, and we are both big fans of the caring culture and dedicated staff that makes learning so much fun here at the Preschool. My favorite pastimes of late are cheering my son’s sports teams, shuttling my daughters to ballet and violin lessons and delighting in D.C.’s vibrant theater scene.


 
The Community Preschool of the Palisades 5200 Cathedral Avenue, NW - Washington, DC 20016 Phone: (202) 364-8424