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Meet our Teachers
 
Erin Underwood
Erin Underwood

Nursery

Erin Underwood is a summa cum laude graduate of Birmingham-Southern College. She has served as Secretary, Vice-president, and President of the AWS Family Association. She has been a Nursery teacher since 2016 and also works in the Preschool Extended Care program. She is the mother of two AWS alumni. 

Holly Thompson
Holly Thompson

Nursery

College of Teachers Chair

Holly Thompson graduated from UAB with degrees in Psychology and Biology with an emphasis in child development. Since 2003, Ms. Holly has worked in the Kindergarten and Nursery, and as faculty representative on the Hiring Committee and the Board of Trustees. She currently serves as head of College of Teachers. She has two children; one is an AWS alumn, and the other is currently in the Grades program.

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Kristen McArthur

Nursery

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Suze Mwenja

Nursery

Kristen McArthur began working at AWS as an Extended Care Teacher in 2017, and became a full-time Preschool Teacher in 2019. She earned a Master's degree in Art History from UAB, and is currently in Waldorf teacher certification training. She has taught Art History at UAB and Jeff State College, and was also the Education Coordinator at Space One Eleven. Kristen has also worked as a nanny for Waldorf students, and currently has a child in the Nursery program at AWS. 

Sadhna Udharam
Sadhna Udharam

Kindergarten

Sadhna Udharam was born and raised in Suriname, South America. She received a bachelor's degree from the Teaching Institute in Suriname. Her love for teaching motivated her to begin at AWS in 2002. She has worked in Extended Care, Nursery and Kindergarten. Ms. Sadhna completed her Early Childhood Waldorf Certification program in the Summer of 2013.

Andrea Holley
Andrea Holley

Kindergarten

Andrea Holley is a certified caregiver through the Jefferson County Department of Human Resources and the "Kid and Kin" Association. Ms. Andrea worked as a substitute and Extended Care teacher at AWS before becoming a full-time Kindergarten teacher in 2008.

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Arden McDonald

Kindergarten

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Sarah Rollins

Kindergarten

 
 
Michelle Lucas
Michelle Fievet Lucas

Grades Teacher

Michelle Lucas holds a Bachelors Degree in Social Work from the UAB and a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work from the UNC-Chapel Hill. Since 2002, she has worked in the Nursery, Kindergarten, and Grades programs at AWS. She completed her Waldorf Grades Certification training in 2012. She is the mother of two AWS alumni. Michelle is in the process of taking her second class through eight grades.

Lynda Powell
Lynda Powell

Grades Teacher

Lynda Powell holds a B.S. in Psychology and an M.S. in Elementary Education, Early Childhood Certification. She completed her Waldorf Grades Certification at Rudolf Steiner College in 2009. She has taught at AWS since 1994, after more than a decade of teaching in public and other private schools. She has served as Kindergarten teacher, Reading Support instructor, and class teacher in the Grades program. She is a member of Delta Kappa Gamma, an honorary organization for outstanding educators. 

Jodie Bradley
Jodie Bradley

Grades Teacher

Jodie Bradley has served on the AWS faculty as an Early Childhood Teacher, a Therapeutic Classroom teacher, and now as a certified Waldorf Grades teacher. She has two children; her son is an AWS alum and her daughter is currently enrolled in the Grades program.

Chez Knox

Grades Teacher

Chez Knox has worked as an instructor at Jefferson State Community College for the past six years, and in the Technology Services Department at Samford University. She has a Masters of Business Administration degree from Samford University. 

Emily Hoppe
Emily Hoppe

Music Teacher

Emily Hoppe joined the AWS faculty as a music teacher in 2013 and now teaches Music and Chorus. Ms. Hoppe is a graduate of Samford University’s Music and Theater Department and is Kodaly certified. She has worked as a music teacher and vocal coach, as well as a theater camp counselor at several area organizations, including Red Mountain Theater Company and Samford University. Ms. Hoppe is also a trained violinist and solo and ensemble vocalist.

 
Rita Meikson
Rita Meikson

Russian Teacher

Originally from Moscow, Russia, Ms. Meikson graduated from the Moscow Pedagogical University with a Master's degree in Children's Psychology and Elementary Education. She worked in Moscow for three years as an elementary school teacher, then for seven years as an instructor at the Moscow Teachers Institute. In 1992, Ms. Meikson moved to the USA with her husband, a Math professor at UAB. They have three children, the youngest of whom is an AWS alum currently at Yale University.

Sarah Gurganus
Sarah Langford

Handwork Teacher

Sarah Langford is a certified Waldorf Handwork Teacher, and specializes in knitting, quilting and hand-sewing. She also has a degree in Music Education from the University of Montevallo. A lifelong musician, she recently released her second album. She teaches Handwork for Grades 1 - 8 and also Middle School Music classes. She has two children at AWS.

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Jackson Massey

Movement Teacher

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Maria Antonia Garcia Espinosa

Spanish Teacher

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Brad Daly

Extended Care Teacher

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Carole Bennighof

Extended Care Teacher