There are two teachers in every Early Learning Program classroom, an Early Learning Teacher (ELT) and an Early Learning Teaching Fellow (ELTF). The Early Learning Teacher is the primary teacher in the classroom whereas the Teaching Fellow plays a support role to the Early Learning Teacher and often is in training to become a full teacher. Contrary to the rest of our program, the Early Learning Program classroom is self-enclosed. For certain courses, a Subject Expert Teacher will push into the room to deliver content.
Hailing from East Tennessee, Ms. Bennett graduated summa cum laude from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology and a minor in dance performance. She continued her studies receiving a Master of Fine Arts in dance choreography from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, where she was also an Iowa Arts Fellow and a Graduate Teaching Assistant. Currently she is finishing up her master’s degree in early childhood education at Hunter College.
Ms. Bennett is thrilled to return to BASIS Independent Brooklyn’s Early Education Teacher faculty. She began working at BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a Kindergarten Teaching Fellow last year. Though Ms. Bennett started teaching dance in 2004 to students ranging from 18 months through college age, she wanted to spend more time with her younger students, engaging with them in ways not limited to movement. Ms. Bennett then transitioned to a lead teacher role in PreK2 and PreK3 programs. With a desire to teach in an elementary setting, Ms. Bennett set her sights on BASIS Independent, hoping to gain more insights into the emotional and academic needs of our earliest learners.
Ms. Bennett has lived fully, including filming an ethnographic documentary in Mexico, backpacking through Europe without a smartphone, knocking on doors for a good cause in southern California, hand-delivering a newborn calf, driving cross-country, and has since committed herself to her ultimate adventure: classroom teaching. Outside the classroom she can be found in contemporary or modern dance classes, working out, watching movies, or eating her favorite ice-cream at her home in Red Hook.
Mr. Chen is a language enthusiast! He joined BASIS Independent Brooklyn more than three years ago. Mr. Chen earned his bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering from Shanghai University in China in 2009. He continued on to earn his master’s degree in nuclear engineering with a full scholarship from the same university in 2012.
Previously Mr. Chen taught Mandarin at P.S. 9 and P.S. 166. He also worked with Qtalk Publishing LLC to develop the QTalk method being used worldwide to teach many languages.
“As a Mandarin Teacher at BASIS independent Brooklyn, I truly enjoy teaching the students each day. I offer a full Mandarin immersion classroom, providing young learners a chance to acquire the language naturally. It is very important to me that my students are making progress and enjoying the learning process,” says Mr. Chen.
In his free time, he enjoys playing basketball, learning Spanish, and traveling.
Ms. Collins returns to BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a Mandarin Teaching Fellow. She is passionate about languages and grew up in a bilingual household. Ms. Collins is fluent in English, Mandarin, Spanish, Italian, French, and Hebrew. While in college, Ms. Collins started her focus on Mandarin because she was intrigued with the language. She loved it from day one, and she feels she has a deep understanding of the roadblocks and hurdles English-speaking children encounter when learning Mandarin since she did as well.
Ms. Collins completed her studies at Columbia’s Teacher College focused on teaching Mandarin not only to English speakers, but also to speakers of multiple other languages. She chooses readings that are relevant and applicable to real-life situations and to cultural experiences in China that may connect to their experiences.
Ms. Collins spent the past nine years privately tutoring students with Rennert International and earlier at Columbia University while studying at Columbia’s Teacher College. She also served as a Chinese Language Teacher at the International Leadership Charter High School. While in college, she worked as a translator with Sky News in the past as well.
As an undergraduate Ms. Collins attended Mount Holyoke College and majored in Asian Studies and International Relations. She continued on with a Summer Language graduate program with Mount Holyoke in Mandarin. She graduated the top two percent in her class with the International Language Program/Falcon Chinese Summer Program with Cornell, and she supplemented her studies by enrolling in the International Chinese Language Program at Peking University School of International Studies.
Ms. Cruz is a Teaching Fellow in the Early Learning Program at BASIS Independent Brooklyn. As a BASIS Independent educator, her goal is to create a positive space for children to grow and acquire knowledge in a fun and rewarding manner. She desires to create an outstanding learning environment.
Ms. Cruz chose a career at BASIS Independent because it allows her to be creative and teach in the style that suits her. She was attracted to the fact that BASIS Independent has trust in their teachers, permitting them to teach in their own unique way.
Ms. Cruz attended Queens College, where she completed a Bachelor of Arts degree. She majored in psychology and minored in sociology.
When Ms. Cruz is not in the classroom, she is hitting the gym. She views the gym as a relaxation technique, and it has become a great part of her life. Ms. Cruz also has a passion for makeup as a form of creative expression.
Ms. De Leon was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. She received the Gates Millennium scholarship and attended Brown University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in biology and master’s degree in elementary teaching. This is Ms. De Leon’s eighth year teaching, and she held the role of Math Subject Lead for the past seven years at her previous school in Brooklyn.
Ms. De Leon is passionate about studying the contexts under which the brain develops conceptual mathematical knowledge and finds it fascinating how every individual has creative and unique solutions for any given mathematical task. Her goal this year as 4th grade math and Early Learning Program engineering teacher is to cultivate a growth mindset culture so that her students can achieve at their highest levels. Ms. De Leon is excited to have found a community of like-minded educators at BASIS Independent Brooklyn, and she is eager to embark on this school year.
Outside the classroom, Ms. De Leon enjoys running half marathons, biking around all the boroughs, and exploring all the cultural spaces that New York City has to offer with her husband and two children.
Ms. Eisinger attended Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, and graduated in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history. Following graduation, Ms. Eisginer moved to New York and began her teaching career at a charter school in Fort Greene where she taught kindergarten for three years and led her team for two of those years. During this time, she also completed her master’s degree in childhood education and special education.
Ms. Eisinger is excited to continue to bring her passion and knowledge to BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a kindergarten teacher. “I am thrilled to start my fourth year at BASIS Independent Brooklyn. My goal is to foster a sense of excitement around learning in every child, nurturing interest about the world around them and making learning meaningful by embedding educational goals within social development,” says Ms. Eisinger.
As an avid baseball fan, Ms. Eisinger roots for her hometown team, the Detroit Tigers, but has adopted the Mets as her New York team. She also enjoys reading, spending time with friends and family, and trying new restaurants.
Mr. Galloway is a Subject Expert Teacher in our Physical Education faculty. He joined BASIS Independent Brooklyn’s faculty the end of the 2016-2017 school year as Teaching Fellow, and he was instrumental in redesigning our recess program across the grades to incorporate collaborative group sports. In his work to date, Mr. Galloway has distinguished himself by revamping recess to make sure all children felt valued during the play time and also incorporated significant physical activity.
A native New Yorker, Mr. Galloway grew up in Battery Park City and ventured to the University of Arizona in Tucson to obtain his master’s degree majoring in science with a minor in German.
Before joining our BASIS Independent Brooklyn faculty, Mr. Galloway worked with Solar One helping bring solar energy to Brooklyn neighborhoods and assisted New York State Senator Daniel Squadron by overseeing the petitioning process to include the politician on the ballot for reelection.
Mr. Goodman is a Teaching Fellow in the Early Learning Program partnering with Ms. Bennett to lead the Calcium class. Previously, he focused on student supported for grade 5 students at BASIS Independent Brooklyn. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology from the University of Delaware in 2016, with minors in English and criminal justice.
Upon graduating, Mr. Goodman worked with City Year in Seattle, Washington where he was an interventionist and provided whole class support for a 4th grade classroom.
Following Seattle, Mr. Goodman moved back to the East Coast and worked as a Site Coordinator for Reading Partners New York, matching community volunteers with K-4 students behind grade level in reading.
Mr. Goodman chose BASIS Independent Brooklyn because he believes that each student should be held to a high standard of learning and should have full ownership in their schooling. He also embraces BASIS Independent’s belief in allowing teachers to have autonomy in their craft. His goal this year is to be a vital asset for student and faculty support.
Mr. Goodman is an avid reader, concert goer, traveler, and foodie. He also enjoys playing tennis and basketball, shooting film, and conspiring about “Game of Thrones” theories. Overall, Mr. Goodman is similar to a mushroom in that he is a fun guy.
Ms. Greenberg graduated from the University of Vermont with a Bachelor of Science in elementary education, and concentrations in anthropology and communication science, combining her passions for education, culture, and language. After graduation, she was a special education instructional assistant in a Vermont public school, then taught pre-kindergarten at an independent school for two years. At BASIS Independent Brooklyn, Ms. Greenberg spent four years as a teacher, leading classes in PreK and first grade.
“When I visited BASIS Independent Brooklyn for the first time, I immediately felt that it was a place where learning with exploration, joy, and individuality was celebrated. It is an inspiring community, in which students and teachers alike are encouraged to bring their own strengths and personalities to the table to face challenges collaboratively and creatively,” she says.
Ms. Greenberg looks forward to continuing to work with our youngest students in an administrative role and experiencing the excitement and enthusiasm of Early Childhood Education through a new lens. As Dean of Early Learning and Grade 1, Ms. Greenberg’s goal is to “support our teachers in fostering a learning environment that is as warm, silly, and emotionally nurturing as it is academically rigorous.” She plans to pay special attention to the social-emotional growth of each student and take a proactive, whole-child approach to behavior.
“The content we teach in the lowest grades is so important and truly the foundation of everything the students will learn in the future. There is nothing like the feeling of knowing you’re giving them something they will have forever, like the ability to read, write, and communicate with their friends,” she says.
Outside of school, Ms. Greenberg enjoys traveling, cooking, and curling up with a great book.
Ms.Gubina joins BASIS Independent Brooklyn as an Early Learning Teaching Fellow. She received her bachelor’s degree from Brooklyn College in early childhood education. Ms.Gubina chose to teach at BASIS Independent Brooklyn, because she has seen first-hand the remarkable impact the school has had on children’s lives. Previously Ms. Gubina was a nanny for children who were enrolled at the school since its opening five years ago. She has seen the children flourish while helping them with their homework, studying with them, and seeing their accomplishments.
Ms. Gubina is excited to make her classroom an exciting, fun, and adventurous learning environment for children to grow and thrive in. She is eager to impart not only knowledge and skills but also the fundamental principles of respect, care, and love towards one another and the environment around us.
When not in the classroom, Ms. Gubina is either involved in a children’s summer program, camp, after school or even teaching dance classes to little children. She also runs a small youth group focused on humanitarian work including feeding the homeless and helping out with soup kitchens. Ms.Gubina has traveled to other countries like Cuba and Africa on humanitarian trips, providing clothing and other necessities. She is very passionate about helping children in need and hopes. It is her dream to one day open up an orphanage in a third world country and adopt children of her own.
Ms. Heinold joined BASIS Independent Brooklyn’s Fine Art faculty bringing more than 17 years promoting progressive learning opportunities and artistic growth in schools and cultural institutions. Ms. Heinold received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Rochester Institute of Technology with a joint concentration in contemporary American art history. She received her Master of Fine Arts with a specialty in painting, from the State University of New York at New Platz.
Ms. Heinold’s passion for teaching and love of the fine arts reflects in her commitment to teach all ages and a wide range of artistic disciplines. Prior to joining BASIS Independent Brooklyn’s faculty, her most recent work included a distinguished partnership with Studio in a School Institute as a curriculum developer and teacher for a Department of Education research grant (Arts in Education Model Development and Dissemination) for New York City public schools where she taught grades K-6 and special needs classes.
Earlier in Ms. Heinold’s career she taught at Nazareth College in Rochester, NY and held a Term Lecturer position at the State University of New York at New Paltz for five years, where she taught undergraduate fine art and the summer intensive graduate program for art educators. Some of her mid-career roles include educator for the Rubin Museum of Art and assisting at the Museum of Modern Art Library & Archive as well as working in collaboration with Brooklyn hospitals, using art and teaching to assist youth with chronic medical conditions through the non-profit organization ArtWorks: The Naomi Cohain Foundation.
Ms. Heinold exhibits her painting, collages and sculptures both nationally and internationally and in her spare time, she enjoys creative sewing, reading magical realism and backpacking.
Mr. Lange joins the Physical Education Faculty at BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a movement expert. He graduated from Salisbury University and is currently pursuing his master’s degree at Manhattenville College in Physical Education and Sports Pedagogy.
Mr. Lange’s goal is to nurture students to have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to enjoy a lifetime of healthful physical activity. He believes in teaching to the “whole student”, not just their body and movement. Throughout his teaching experience, Mr. Lange has prioritized incorporating strategy, teamwork, problem solving, and health-related fitness into his classes.
Mr. Lange chose BASIS Independent School because of the teachers, curriculum, and methods of teaching kids to enjoy learning. “The school community is very welcoming and the academics are unparalleled,” said Mr. Lange. “The students are motivated, the administration supportive, and the achievements are high.” BASIS Independent Brooklyn is a school where he feels he can really grow and maximize his experience as an educator.
When not in class, Mr. Lange enjoys being outdoors. Hiking, rock climbing, snowboarding, golfing, and camping are just a few of his favorite pastimes. Mr. Lange is a big sports fan attending Mets, Knicks, and Giants games whenever he can. Mr. Lange also has a passion for Italian food, and his family can be found making homemade pizza and pasta regularly.
Ms. MacCoille is a Subject Expert Teacher in the Music Faculty at BASIS Independent Brooklyn. Ms. MacCoille received her degree in performance and music education from the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She continued on to receive her master’s degree in classical civilizations and Italian from Trinity College Dublin. She recently started her master’s degree in early childhood education at Hunter College. This past summer Ms. MacCoille also started her Orff Schulwerk certification and completed her Level 1 at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.
Previously, Ms. MacCoille worked as a performing operatic mezzo soprano for several years and was the lead vocal and early learning music teacher at the Glasnevin Academy of Music for five years. She enjoys working with children of all ages PreK through Gr. 12.
Ms. MacCoille was drawn to BASIS Independent Brooklyn for the high expectations it has for 100% of its students. “I’ve always taught my students that making mistakes and facing challenges is an invaluable and welcome part of the learning process, and this is central to the BASIS Independent ethos!”
Ms. Miller-Sims is the Director of Student Affairs for both our Early Learning Program and Primary School, and she looks forward to supporting all her students and faculty achieve at their highest level in a joyful environment.
Ms. Miller-Sims graduated magna cum laude from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio with a Bachelor of Arts degree. She was a modern languages major studying both Italian and French. While an undergraduate, she studied abroad in Padua, Italy. Ms. Miller-Sims later attended the Steinhardt School of Education at New York University where she received a Master of Arts degree in foreign language education. Ms. Miller-Sims received a Master of Science degree in general and special education grades 1–6 from Touro College.
Ms. Miller-Sims first joined the faculty at BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a Learning Expert Teacher for the Primary School because she wanted to be an integral part of a community with a strong culture of learning and curiosity.
“While it is always a difficult choice to leave the classroom, I am excited for the new challenges that moving into an administrative role will provide. During my time as a teacher I saw how crucial having an excellent, supportive admin team is to the success of a school, and I am excited to bring a fresh perspective to my role as Director of the Early Learning and Primary Programs.”
Outside of school, Ms. Miller-Sims enjoys exploring new cultures both inside New York City and by travelling to other cities and countries. She also loves taking her dog for long walks in Prospect Park.
Ms. Moon’s life passion is working with early learners; she brings to BASIS Independent Brooklyn over two decades of experience working with children from ages two to five. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in anthropology at Hunter College in New York City. She then completed a Master of Science degree in early childhood education at Hunter College (and graduated with a perfect grade point average!). She holds New York State Professional Certification in Birth through 2nd grade.
After her initial training, Ms. Moon began her professional career teaching young children at the Discovery Programs in Manhattan in 1992. She acted as the Director of Discovery Programs from 2004 until 2008, when she happily followed her love for teaching back into the classroom. Ms. Moon is a familiar face to many BASIS Independent Brooklyn students and families as she taught two-year-olds and three-year-olds at Grace Church School from 2008 until 2012, when she switched into their Pre-Kindergarten program. She enjoys teaching the youngest students “because they are so full of light and love and eager to learn and grow. They inspire me to be a lifelong learner!”
As an expert in early childhood, Ms. Moon understands the importance of supporting her students’ social and emotional needs, while inspiring them to grow academically. “I always listen and strive to be as compassionate as possible so I can be understanding and helpful in every situation. Academic learning must be supported through social and emotional play.”
Ms. Moon is excited to pioneer the Early Learning Program and bring her expertise to our classrooms. She says, “I was attracted to the BASIS Independent Brooklyn Early Learning Program because of the high quality of the teachers and the outstanding administration team developing this new program.”
Ms. Moon is also an accomplished musician and brings her love of music to her teaching. In her spare time, she enjoys playing guitar and has even released two children’s albums!
Ms. Morehouse is excited to return to BASIS Independent Brooklyn Early’s Learning Program Family. Ms. Morehouse graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in politics and government with a minor in sociology. After several years working in advertising in Chicago, she realized teaching was her true calling and returned to school to obtain her master’s degree in education from DePaul University.
After obtaining her master’s degree, Ms. Morehouse taught kindergarten in Chicago before moving back to New York City to be closer to family. For the past three years, she has taught kindergarten at another nearby school in Brooklyn. She also obtained her New York State Elementary Education Certification.
When not teaching, you can find Ms. Morehouse spending time with my family in Westchester, reading, or planning trips with family and friends.
Ms. Palette joined BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a founding member of our Early Learning Program. The upcoming school year marks her third one as a Teaching Fellow, and she will be working with Ms. Morehouse to nurture the curiosity of our kindergarten students.
Native to New York City, Ms. Palette graduated from St. Francis College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in childhood education (k-6) with a concentration in English.
In her spare time, Ms. Palette enjoys reading a good book on the beach, drinking iced coffee, spending time with family and friends. She also has a passion for traveling and learning about other cultures.
Ms. Porter joins BASIS Independent Brooklyn as an Early Learning Teacher for our PreK class Neon. She has taught for years in both school and museum environments, and she appreciates the unique, joyful and challenging approach to learning that the BASIS Independent Schools offer.
Ms. Porter earned her bachelor’s degree in art history and religious studies at the University of Colorado. She continued on to earn her Masters of Arts Teaching in Museum Education from The George Washington University.
Ms. Reilly is an Early Learning Teacher at BASIS Independent Brooklyn. She received her bachelor’s degree in human development at SUNY Binghamton. She focused on human cognitive development, and she is excited to nurture the curiosity of some of our youngest learners at the school. Ms. Reilly is currently finishing her master’s degree.
Ms. Reilly joined BASIS Independent Brooklyn’s Early Learning Faculty two years ago. She has years of experience teaching and caring for infants, toddlers, and young children in daycare centers, and as a child care provider for multiple families. Previously, Ms. Reilly-Murphy cared for twin boys as a nanny when they were in the preschool and kindergarten years. She knows and enjoys being with children during this formative period.
Mrs. Reyes received her Bachelor of Science in biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) in 2008, also concentrating in philosophy and computer science/electrical engineering. Her work at M.I.T. afforded her the opportunity to build a few robots while also working with (amazing) Professors Paul Mastudaira and Robert Weinberg at the Whitehead Biomedical Research Institute.
As a teaching fellow in the Kindergarten program, Mrs. Reyes cannot wait to explore the unlimited potential of some of our youngest students. She is very grateful for her strong early education and hopes to help passionate young learners take their very important first steps into academia and all of the wonderful things to explore therein.
Mrs. Reyes chose BASIS Independent Brooklyn because she believes strongly that students, at any age, can engage passionately and beneficially in the learning process. BASIS Independent Brooklyn supports their students, faculty, and staff in such a way as to make this a reality.
Mrs. Reyes enjoys exploring Brooklyn, and the rest of the world, with her family and dog. She is an avid comic book, board game, and art fan; enjoying conventions, galleries, and so many of the wonderful geeky opportunities for exploration that New York City has to offer.
Ms. Rivera has taught at BASIS Independent Brooklyn for the past three years as a founding teacher in the new Early Learning Program. She has enjoyed her experience working with young children. “My passion lies in the foundations of learning – a time in a child’s life when they are beginning to achieve the greatest level of success through motivation and discovery,” said Ms. Rivera.
Ms. Rivera graduated from Hunter College with a master’s degree in childhood education. She was inducted to the National Educational Honor Society, Kappa Delta Pi and graduated summa cum laude. After graduation, Ms. Rivera gained experience in the classroom as a prekindergarten teacher in an Independent school in Manhattan. She later taught kindergarten at a charter school in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, before joining BASIS Independent Brooklyn.
When she’s not teaching, Ms. Rivera enjoys traveling to new countries with her family and friends. She also enjoys attending Broadway shows and spending quality time with her three cats.
Ms. Salvatore was drawn to BASIS Independent Brooklyn by the desire to teach an accelerated academic curriculum that is infused with joy and creativity. She sees each day as a chance to impart foundational skills and inspire a love of learning in her students.
Ms. Salvatore completed her undergraduate studies at Loyola University where she focused on both English literature and education. She also earned teacher certification for English Language Arts, grades 7–12.
Following graduation, Ms. Salvatore taught English at the high school level in her hometown of Allentown, Pennsylvania where she also coached a children’s swimming team. She later made the big move to New York City when an opportunity arose to teach kindergarten at a school in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. It was in that classroom that Ms. Salvatore discovered her passion for early childhood education. Witnessing the strides her students could make in less than a year simply amazed her. “I am in constant awe of what four- and five-year-olds can accomplish if you only give them the opportunity to try.”
Outside the classroom, Ms. Salvatore enjoys spending time with family, exploring local restaurants, museums, and shops, and going to the beach.
Ms. Strom earned a Bachelor of Arts in psychology with a minor in history from Rutgers University, and she received a Master of Arts in psychology in 2010 from New York University. She also completed graduate coursework at the University of Denver in clinical psychology.
Ms. Strom began her career at BASIS Independent Brooklyn as a 4th Grade Learning Expert Teacher aiming to set scholars up for success by giving them the tools to excel both academically and relationally. These tools include creativity, critical thinking, and organization, along with emotional understanding and management. Most importantly, she worked to instill in students that people may not remember exactly what you say or do, but they will remember how you make them feel.
In the 2019-2020 school year, Ms. Strom transitions to the Subject Expert Teacher role allowing her to convey to students her love of Classics stemming from her study of history. Ms. Strom will also lead select music and performing arts classes. She is a classically trained pianist, and she can often be found playing Bach, Beethoven, the Beatles, and Simon and Garfunkel.
Ms. Strom chose BASIS Independent Brooklyn because of its collaborative nature, leadership, high expectations, and trust in the expertise of teachers. She is excited to use her training in psychology, experience with teaching, and artistic nature to work with the students of varied learning styles.
Ms. Strom loves spending time with family, including her lovable dog named Pants! In her free time, she also enjoys listening to scary podcasts and playing Dungeons & Dragons.