(Scratch) Andrew Doig is the IT/ Systems Administrator at Brookline Interactive Group. In addition to managing BIG"s website, You Tube page, OSX Development, programming for BIG's cable channels, he runs productions in BIG's studio and has taught several sessions of Scratch in after school programs around Brookline.
(Early Morning Yoga) Ana Mares- Guia, owner of Divya Jyoti Yoga Therapy, a private practice in the heart of Washington Square. For the last fifteen years, DJ - a longtime Brookline resident and proud Driscoll mom- has specialized in individual yoga therapy sessions tailored to each student's particular needs. She holds an M.A. in Yoga Psychology from Lesley University and has consulted at several Boston-area hospitals and eating disorder treatment centers. DJ works wit hadults, teens, and children, including kids with special needs, in individual yoga therapy sessions. Some of the new skills kids learn with DJ are the self-regulation of emotions, mental and physical fitness, enhanced focus at school, emotional resilience, mindful embodiment and compassionate confidence. Learn more about DJ's practice at www.yogadj.com, or reach out to her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and 617.999.6365.
(Photography) Robin Radin is a Boston based photographer whose career as an exhibiting artist and educator has spanned over thirty-five years. She received her BFA from Tufts University and the Boston Museum School of the Fine Arts in 1983, and her MFA from Massachusetts College of Art in 1992. Her photographs have been exhibited and published nationally. Radin's work has been presented in over fifty venues, some of which include The Danforth Museum of Art, The Institute of Contemporary Art, The Cambridge Art Association, Bunker Hill Community College, The Photographic Resource Center, The Aidekman Art Center at Tufts University, The Center For Photography-Woodstock, The Charles A. Wustum Museum of Fine Arts-Racine, WI, South Shore Art Center-Atlanta, GA, The Dean's Gallery at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Texas Women's University, Fort Scott Community College-Fort Scott, KS, In 2010, in collaboration with writer Lynne Anderson, her photographs were included in the book Breaking Bread: Recipes and Stories From Immigrant Kitchens, published by the University of California Press. Radin's work has been reproduced in numerous exhibition catalogues and has been reviewed in a variety of newspapers and magazines, including The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald, Art New England, The Bay State Banner, The Chicago Reader, and The Woodstock Times. Twice her work has been featured on the Boston Neighborhood Network News cable TV program as well as on a WBZ (CBS) specialabout Jamica Plain Open Studios. Not only has Radin exhibited annually in Jamaica PLain Open Studios since its inception twenty-four years ago, she has also served on the board of The Jamaica Plain Arts Council for over eighteen years, and she administers the fundraising efforts for that organization. Radin is a 2003 recipient of the Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Grant in Photography.
(chess II & III) Tony has been working with children for over 30 years. A graduate of Brown University with additional studies at Berklee College of Music, Tony blends a personalized teaching style with a developmental approach designed to encourage creative thinking. Tony has been teaching chess both in after-school programs and privately since2012, and has taught chess at Driscoll School, Devotion School, and Fein Academy in Brookline. Tony focuses on each child's individuality and learning style, as well ascreating an atmosphere of fun and excitement, while encouraging group participation. In addition to teaching chess, Tony also developed and ran an innovative musicprogram at Suzan's School in Brookline for over 25 years, and has extensive experience teaching children from preschool ages up through grade school. Tony also teachesmusic at Salem State University, and is currently in his 11th year there. A professional jazz guitarist as well, Tony performs at venues throughout New England, and alsooffers private instruction both in chess and guitar.
(Wednesdays, Minecraft Electrical Engineering & Architecture) Empow Studios brings technology, arts, and play together to help young learners discover and build on their creative talents. It is a well-known belief that the need for specialized skills in technology and computer science are ever-growing. Our goal is to empower kids to design, build, and code awesomely unique projects that they can be proud to share with family and friends, and to spark interests for future ambitions in STEM. Projects include video game design, robotics, coding in Java, animation, 3D modeling, Minecraft, video production, DJing and music production, and more. Empow currently runs School Vacation & Summer Camps at teh HEath School in Brookline (among other locations), and teaches with 6-7 Brookline Public Schools every term. To learn more about Empow Studios, please visit https://empow.me
(Garden Saviors) Victor Kusmin is Zara and Zippy’s dad. He is currently a SAHD, Driscoll parent, Driscoll School Garden Program chair, avid gardener, and aspiring hobby homesteader. He has been, variably, a DIY general contractor, landscape architect, urban planner, Colorado native plant consultant, estate gardener, landscape contractor, and botanist. He even spent a season as a farm apprentice, producing organic Chinese medicinal herbs with biodynamic farming techniques, while participating in the Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training. He earned his MLA from the University of Colorado in 2004, and BA in Environmental Science from The Colorado College in 1997. He also participated in the Denver Botanic Gardens Master Gardener Program.
Elizabeth Heller was regularly practicing Tae Kwo Do alongside her five-year-old son when she took her first yoga class as a favor to another mom. Hooked, she continued to practice yoga at home as a form of centering, which transformed her martial arts practice. After an ACL tear, yoga became a source of both physical and emotional healing for Elizabeth. It was then that she fell in love with its transformative power: her life, spirit, and body had never felt more peaceful, vibrant, and energized. Elizabeth a member of the Coolidge Corner Yoga Kids staff. She has completed a 200-hour teacher training with the New School of Yogic Arts and profound teachers Laura Ahrens and Andrew Tanner. She has also completed a children’s yoga teacher training with her generous, inspiring teacher, Dawn Keighley, through Kidasana Kids Yoga Teacher Training, and is a certified prenatal yoga teacher through Om Births with Bec Conant. Additionally, Elizabeth is the author/co-author of eight books for and about children, and a contributing author of two parenting books. She has a BA in English and an MS in Broadcast Journalism, created a children’s sports and news program, and was a money reporter for a Boston children’s radio program. She completed eight years of Tae Kwon Do training and earned her second-degree black belt.
Lex Vazquez Lex joined BAC as Assistant Director in March 2018. He has always had an interest in the arts and attended Parsons School of Design for his undergraduate degree in Integrated Design, a fashion and media studies major. After returning to Boston, his hometown, he focused his efforts on expanding access to the arts within low-income communities as a program coordinator at South End-based nonprofit IBA. There, he focused on curating a gallery and organizing events ranging from concerts to children's theater. In his spare time, he enjoys painting, writing and going to local galleries and museums
(tae kwon do) Lisa Hanson is a second degree black belt and has been an instructor at Giorgio's School of Tae Kwon Do since 2006. Lisa is also a Tae Kwon Do instructor for Brookline Park and Rec department. She earned her Bachelors Degree in Education and taught Special Education and Early Childhood Education for many years. Lisa and her husband have four children, two of whom have practiced Tae Kwon Do. She is currently training to become a martial arts therapist.
(Group Voice) DANIEL LYNG, tenor, is a student at the New England Conservatory. He is pursuing a Masters of Music Degree in Voice Pedagogy under the tutelage of Dr. Ian Howell. Daniel recently completed his Bachelors of Music Degree at the Eastman School of Music, where he studied with Jan Opalach and Dr. Jonathan Retzlaff. An active performer, Daniel is a winner of the Burnt Hills Oratorio Society Vocal Competition and the Saratoga Warren County Music Educators Association Competition. Recent roles include Ko-Ko in Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado, and Tenor in Phillip Glass's Hydrogen Jukebox with Eastman Opera Theatre. In addition, Daniel has served as a Director and Music Hall, Saratoga Children's Theater, and Shenendehowa High School, among others. Daniel maintains a vibrant private voice studio and seeks to help all students achieve their vocal potential using evidence-based pedagogy.
(Sewing) Nicola Day, the owner and founder of Hipstitch, is the eldest of 14 children. She began sewing her own clothes around age 11. As a young adult, Nicola came to the US from Stoke-on-Trent England and landed on the island of Nantucket. There she worked in teh sewing store and developed a line of purses which she sold in boutiques across the U.S. After settling down in Newton, MA, she has followed her entrepreneurial spirit by opening Hipstitch! Check out www.hipstitchers.com
Kaitlyn Mann (assitant), was taught how to sew doll clothes at a young age by her grandmother. She picked up sewing again in high school when she began cosplaying--creating costumes of characters from her favorite anime, cartoons, and video games. Later on, she became the team leader for the alterations department at Uniqlo on Newbury Street. Kaitlyn also crafts and styles wigs for herself and for commissions.
Kate Plossious (substitute teacher), holds a BA in Photography with a minor in Art, History, and worked in human resources for years. She is an avid crafter, passionate re-creator, and ardent painter. After having her two sons, Kate returned to her artistic roots, teaching and working with children of many ages. Her creative gifts and love for teaching are paramount to everything she does at Hipstitch!
Official Mission: Starting with curious kids, give them the desire, the skills, the confidence, the competence, and the resources to build cool stuff. Kids graduate from Ascendly classes thinking like an engineer, talking like an engineer, building like an engineer, and solving problems like an engineer. Un-Official Mission: Build awesome stuff using LEGO bricks, maybe some robots, too.