Course creator and Director Mary Ellen Maunz has 40 years of experience in Montessori, teaching at the 2½ to 6 year-old and the 6 to 12 year-old levels, and administrating a large private school for 20 years.

Mary Ellen was trained over a four-year period as a Master Teacher by Dr. Elisabeth Caspari, personal friend and student of Maria Montessori, and was awarded a Master Teacher diploma in 1983. Caspari and Maunz remained close friends and worked together from their initial meeting in 1979 up until Caspari’s passing in 2002. The legacy from Maria Montessori to Elisabeth Caspari to Mary Ellen Maunz is unbroken. Maunz has continued in teacher education since that time.

Maunz earned her M.Ed. in Integrative Education with an emphasis on Montessori from Endicott College, and she holds a BS in Child Development from the University of La Verne. She also holds an AMI Montessori diploma for ages 2½ – 7 and a Pan-American Montessori Society diploma for ages 6 – 12. She has a certificate of Pastoral Care from Houston’s Institutes of Religion where she studied the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd with Dr. Sofia Cavalletti.

She has lectured widely both nationally and internationally for more than 30 years on multiple topics relating to children and education. She founded a Montessori teacher education institution in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 2007, where she teaches every summer.

Mary Ellen also has an extensive background as a school consultant and as the co-creator of a successful business in early reading products, the Early Reading Company. She was lead author of the book, Learning to Read is Child’s Play, published in 2000.

She served as Commissioner for Accreditation and Member of the Board of Directors for the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE) from 1992-2000 and held the position of Vice-President of the International Association of Montessori Educators (IAME) from 2001-2004.

Mother of three grown children, Mary Ellen’s great passion is exploring the deeper spiritual message of Maria Montessori. She loves to read, swim, and hike with friends and family.