We are so happy to welcome Beth Nazemi into our Villa di Maria community! Beth seamlessly joined Ms. Steinman in P3 this year, and it is as if she’s always been here. Here’s a peek into Beth’s life outside of VdM!
Describe your educational background.
I have an Associate’s degree in Human Services (working with children). I then promptly ran off to Europe and moved to Corsica where I was an organic farmer in the mountains with no electricity, phone, or running water (at first) for almost 11 years. I built a campground with a small pavilion restaurant and did this for a few years, but alas I was called back to the States to be with my Father who was diagnosed with cancer. I moved back home to Kirkwood just 4 blocks from Villa where I grew up. My son wanted to stay with his American family, so after my Dad passed, I went back to school and received a Bachelor’s degree in French Literature from UMSL with a K-12 teaching certificate. I taught French at Kirkwood and Webster Groves high school for 2 years.
How/when did you become interested in Montessori education?
I got married and moved to Chesterfield, Mo and had my second son. When he was three, I started looking for a school, and found one just down the street. Fell in love with the school and Montessori education. After a year and half, I had an opportunity to teach French there part-time which then morphed into full-time shortly after. I worked there for almost 15 years. I went from teaching French in the afternoon to substituting in the mornings, almost 8 years as a primary assistant and finally toddler assistant this past year, while still teaching French to the elementary and Adolescent students in the afternoon. My son graduated from there in 8th grade went on to SLUH and is now a freshman at Loyola University of Chicago. He received an amazing education and is a wonderful human being, which I accredit to this wonderful education.
What has been the BEST part of your Montessori training/experience so far?
I think the best experiences is watching the primary students grow and move into elementary and witness the amazing changes. Some of these children struggled in their early years, but eventually they discovered their potential, and this gives me comfort, faith and knowledge that this education can transform our children into confident young people who embrace the world of learning.
What do you enjoy doing outside of your time at VdM?
Being with my grandson, who will be one this month.
If you were to plan a most perfect, relaxing weekend day, what would it entail?
It would be a day in the mountains in a log cabin completely isolated from the world.
What is something you look forward to this coming school year?
I look forward to working with Heather and being back in the primary classroom.
Book: Lord of the Rings
Type of music: Soft Rock
Song: “Here I am Lord”
Restaurant in St. Louis: Ya Ya’s
Sport: Horseback riding
Game: French Tarot
Vegetable: All except okra
If you had to choose ONE:
Rain or Snow: Rain
Coffee or Tea: Tea
Morning or Night: Morning
Ocean or Lake: Lake
Dog or Cat: Cat
Talk or Listen: Both
Walk or Run: Walk
Save or Spend: Spend
Bike or Swim: Bike
Salt or Pepper: Salt
Realistic Fiction or Fantasy: Fantasy
Summer or Winter: Summer in the mountains
New York or California: California
Cook or Dine Out: Cook