Sierra Expeditionary Learning School (SELS) is excited to introduce you to our new Founding Director, David Manahan.
Mr. Manahan arrives with nearly 20 years of educational experience in various roles and institutions. His background in outdoor and experiential education includes facilitation at environmental learning centers, curriculum development and start up, group and corporate team building, and educator training.
Maura Bannon received BAs in Environmental Ethics and Policy and Spanish from the University of Portland, Oregon. She earned her Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and Masters in Teaching from National University in San Diego, California. Maura has several years of teaching experience with multiple grade levels. Maura was drawn to SELS because of the integration of outdoor adventure, community, and project-based learning. She loves helping students challenge themselves and find their strengths. In her free time, Maura can be found enjoying the local outdoors with her family trail running, hiking, skiing, and camping.
Elizabeth Bell comes to Sierra Expeditionary Learning School with 10 years of experience in elementary education, ranging from Adventure-Based Curriculum to international and public school classroom teaching. Ms. Bell taught Kindergarten, First Grade and multi-age 1-2-3 in India, Vermont and Incline Village. She was later employed as an Art Teacher for young children at the KidZone Museum, where she taught exploration-based classes and was responsible for creating new policies and programs. Most recently, Ms. Bell worked as a home-study teacher, guiding her own children on a long-term, multidisciplinary study of local history. Their culminating project, Going West with the Donners can be viewed on youTube.
Maya Holguin comes to Sierra Expeditionary Learning School with a wide variety of teaching experiences. She has spent more than 10 years as a classroom educator, working with kindergarten through 3rd grades. She also feels fortunate to have taught in the field of outdoor education and wilderness adventure.
Ms. Holguin is moving from Santa Cruz, California, where she not only grew up, but has spent the past 3 years teaching in the local public schools. She helped develop kindergarten curriculum and also worked closely with 3rd graders on literacy. Last year she particularly enjoyed having daily parent volunteers in her classroom.
Dana Seaborg was born and raised in Truckee, CA and graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from the University of Nevada, Reno. She comes to SELS with a wide range of experience working with elementary age children. Throughout college, Dana lead an after school and Kinder program while she worked toward becoming a teacher. After completing her student teaching at Truckee Elementary, she continued substitute teaching regularly and worked daily with both first and fourth graders on literacy skills. Most recently Dana spent a year teaching second grade in the mountains of Costa Rica. While there, she was able to learn effective and interactive strategies to help English Learners excel in Language Arts. Dana is excited to bring her enthusiasm for teaching and local knowledge to SELS this year.
As one of the founding crew leaders at Sierra Expeditionary Learning School, Diane Welch is a veteran teacher of 20 years. Prior to arriving at SELS, Mrs. Welch taught for 8 years at a highly implementing Expeditionary Learning school in Pocatello, ID. Mrs. Welch has a high level of experience designing Learning Expeditions that align with newly implemented Common Core State Standards as well as a deep understanding of Expeditionary Learning practices. She has organized and led many crews on Adventure trips to Lake Tahoe, Yellowstone National Park and Crater's of the Moon National Monument as well as taking her crew rock climbing, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, swimming, and camping.
At the confluence of her love of teaching and the outdoors, Julie Brisbin found her way into the Sierra Expeditionary Learning School community in 2010 as a Founding Teacher. Julie’s seven years of classroom experience range from not only guiding her students through dynamic thematic units and expeditions, but also coaching positions which include CRT Coach, Team Leader, and PLC Facilitator. Julie has taught locally in Tahoe City and Reno since 2005. Prior to teaching in the classroom, Julie was an Environmental Education/ Adventure Education guide for many outdoor education schools in Montana, Colorado, and Arizona. During Julie’s experience teaching for Sierra Expeditionary Learning School, Julie has achieved community accolades for her Fall 2011 Expedition titled “On American Soil,” in which students raised money for the Donner Summit 20-Mile Museum. The class then researched and graphically designed an interpretive sign for their petroglyph site. The sign still stands, prominently featured, at the petroglyph site on Old Hwy 40.