About Us

Why Miami Jewish Montessori

The starting point of all growth in life is connection. From the moment a child is born the connection to their mother, father, family, and community is the catalyst of the child’s development. These relationships form a base for the child to build upon as they grow.

At Miami Jewish Montessori we believe that true learning can only take place when a meaningful relationship between a child and their teachers is established. Therefore, Our educational model is predicated on creating a connection between the child and their learning, environment, peers, and teachers.

As per The Montessori methodology, Miami Jewish Montessori fosters connection by allowing teachers to focus directly on each individual student, working with them to achieve the students' goals in learning. Teachers regularly work one-on-one with each student, and often multiple times a day. Furthermore, They are in tune with the child’s emotional well-being and are able to help their students work through difficult or big emotions with dignity and respect.

At Miami Jewish Montessori each child is valued for who they are as an individual. Teachers utilize individualized lesson plans to incorporate a child’s interests and needs. In addition, children are assessed as individuals and not in comparison to peers, allowing teachers the ability to zone-in on the particular strengths and weaknesses of that child as a person, rather than a statistic of a larger group.

The sense of connection imbues the entire school creating a sense of warmth and family throughout. Because every parent who chooses Miami Jewish Montessori is family, we aim to be there for all of our families needs inside and outside of school.

At Miami Jewish Montessori we believe that every single child is born to make a specific contribution to the world. As educators we believe that we owe it to the future world to ensure our students show up as the best version of themselves, as opposed to an excellent model of what someone else thinks they should be.

Parent Testimonials

This is our first experience with Montessori and we couldn’t be more impressed. Our daughter is learning math, language arts and new skills every day. We love our school family!
Coconut Grove, FL
MJM provides an exceptional environment for growth and learning. Throughout this year we've seen Andrea grow and blossom in the care of the loving and nurturing staff at MJM and we could not be happier with our overall experience, both on an academic and personal level. MJM is more than a school, it is a community of caring individuals, who day in and day out demonstrate their dedication to our child's growth and well-being, through personalized attention and care. Thank you MJM for a truly exceptional educational experience!
Andreina and Carlos Herrera, Miami, FL

MJM stokes my children’s creative passions and embraces their unique skills and interests to motivate their learning. They focus on the whole child, fostering social, emotional, intellectual and self-discipline skills. My kids have been here for one year and I’m already seeing them develop into adaptable thinkers, collaborative problem solvers, and irrepressible learners.

Because their learning is so connected, and concrete, they actively use what they learn. My daughter was selling lemonade and someone offered to pay extra if she waits until they have cash, and she said she cannot accept interest. She is 6!

As they understand where we are in the Jewish timeline they see themselves as the generation to bring Mashiach and they actively work towards it.

Thank you all!

Brickell, FL

The only constant in life is change and learning. Thank MJM for continuously planting the seed of knowledge in the most loving, nourishing, safe and trusting environment. MJM is our daughter’s 1st school, her second home and our family’s most trusted support/care to her healthy development.

We are very blessed and cannot thank all staff, teachers and administrators at MJM for your love, kindness, compassion and commitment to educate our children.

The Bayard Family, Coconut Grove, FL

We chose MJM for our children because it’s based on teaching through a natural, dynamic, and interactive way. The kids learn all the important academic and spiritual concepts by exploring the materials and lessons around them. They are guided by amazing loving teachers that focus on each child’s interests and specific traits.

We are privileged to have a school like MJM and we are proud to be part of what we believe is the new generation of education.

Sabrina and Ighal Goldfarb, Bal Harbor, FL

My son Aaron 4 Years improves a lot since he is in MJM. He loves Talking about what he learned. He is able to read, to count, to speak and understand English and Spanish.

And also learned about Jewish history. All the family loves the way he learned and loves to see him happy!

Thanks to his wonderful and very professional teachers and of course thanks to the administrative team!

We are very Grateful…

Laura and Jerome Levy, Coconut Grove, FL
My children, who attend MIAMI Jewish Montesorri have a love for learning that permeates their lives, way beyond the four walls of their classRooms, in every environment they encounter. This is a testament to the entire staff at MJM for cultivating and keeping their love and curiosity for learning alive. Thank you all!
Alisa and Getzy Fellig, Coconut Grove, FL
Benjamin and Charlotte absolutely love Miami Jewish Montessori. We eagerly wait for them to come home everyday and share what new song or quip of wisdom they have to share with us. We could not be more thrilled with their education and their second home!
Levi and Lauren Meyer, Coconut Grove, FL

Enrollment

To learn more about the innovative work we do at Miami Jewish Montessori schedule a tour today. You need to see it to believe it.

We offer group and private tours. To schedule a tour fill out the form below and our office will reach out to you to schedule.

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Financial Aid

Our goal at Miami Jewish Montessori is to make excellent Jewish education accessible to all. Through the generous support of community donors, we are able to offer scholarships to families who need financial assistance annually. Please click on the form below to apply.

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Chana’le Gourarie

Chana’le Gourarie

Founder and Director (since 2014)

Chana’le Gourarie is a Coconut Grove native and a born educator. Her parents, Rabbi and Mrs. Fellig, are the directors of Chabad of the Grove, the first and only synagogue in Coconut Grove. From a young age, Chana’le naturally found herself sharing and teaching children and adults in her community about their Jewish heritage.

Chana’le has a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology from Landers School of Arts and Sciences and a Masters of Science in Education with a specialization in Montessori. In addition Chana’le is a trained Montessori teacher for Early Childhood, as well as Lower & Upper Elementary.

Chana’le founded Miami Jewish Montessori in 2014. It is the only Jewish school in Coconut Grove, and the only Jewish Montessori school in Florida with an elementary program. It is her belief that connection is the birth place of all learning and growth. Her goal for all students at Miami Jewish Montessori is to support the natural connection children have with G-d, the Torah, and the world around them. It is her belief that all children deserve a healthy education predicated on mutual respect.

Rabbi Daniel Presberg

Rabbi Daniel Presberg

Head of School (since 2016)

Rabbi Presberg received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Cornell University and Master’s Degree in Strategic Communication and Leadership from Seton Hall University. He received Montessori training in both lower and upper elementary at the Center for Montessori Teacher Education.

Rabbi Presberg has been ad educator for over 30 years. From his beginnings in outdoor education; running team building programs for business and community organizations to running camps and working in various different school systems as a Rebbi, teacher, curriculum coordinator, principal, teacher trainer, consultant, and more. Rabbi Presberg has been also involved in developing and implementing innovative curriculum in the Jewish Montessori methodology. His love and deep understanding of each individual persons needs are what make him a connected and inspired educator.

Miss Eva Ochoa

Miss Eva Ochoa

Lead Toddler Teacher (since 2017)

Miss Eva Ochoa has been a Montessori educator for 27 years and has loved every minute. Miss Eva’s Montessori career began in Colorado at Lakewood Montessori when her daughter began going to school. After moving to Miami Miss Eva joined the teaching team at Killian Montessori and received her training in Montessori for ages birth through three years old. She was with Killian Montessori for 20 years until they closed their doors. Miss Eva enjoys spending time with family, traveling, and learning about new cultures. During the weekends she volunteers with children at her church.

Miss Andrea Valesquez

Miss Andrea Valesquez

Assistant Toddler Teacher (since 2017)

Miss Andrea is 22 years old and the mother of a beautiful baby girl. She was born in Colombia and raised in Miami. Miss Andrea is currently working towards a BA in criminal justice. In her spare time she likes to travel and explore different parts of the world. Miss Andrea enjoys teaching her students and watching how rapidly the Toddlers learn and grow!

Morah Yennifer Casebolt

Morah Yennifer Casebolt

Lead Lower Elementary Teacher (since 2017)

Morah. Yennifer has 22 years of experience in Montessori education, 18 of them as a certified primary Montessori teacher. She is very passionate about the Montessori method as she believes it is the only educational program that takes the whole child into consideration. Morah. Yennifer would like to ensure not only academic prosperity but also plant the seed for happiness and a love for learning in her students that will last a lifetime. Her greatest joy as a teacher is to watch her students pride as they finally grasp a concept or skill they have been working to master. She was born and raised in Santo Domingo the capital of the Dominican Republic and has two lovely children of her own. She enjoys reading, knitting and hopes someday to learn to sew.

Morah Sashie Friedman

Morah Sashie Friedman

Lead Primary Teacher (since 2017)

Morah Sashie Friedman is a graduate of the Beth Chana Teacher's Institute in Safed, Israel. She has over 15 years experience teaching preschool. In addition to her dedication in the classroom, Morah Sashie founded the Chabad Jewish Student Center at FIU, in 2004, with her husband Rabbi Levi Friedman. Her role at the student center includes teaching, hosting Shabbat Dinners, and event planning. On top of all that, Morah Sashie is a doting mother to her 7 beautiful children.

Morah Barbara Sannazzaro

Morah Barbara Sannazzaro

Assistant Primary Teacher (since 2014)

Barbara Sanazarro has over 10 years experience working with and teaching children. She is passionate about art and sees it as a way to learn about a child and the way the child’s mind works. Barbara is fundamentally patient and caring. She offers great warmth and love to our classroom. Barbara was born in Argentina, and is a mother of four wonderful children.

Morah Claudia Montano

Morah Claudia Montano

Since 2017

Claudia Montano was born in Florida and raised in Mexico and Texas. In 2002 she gradutated with a Bachelors in Science Agronomy Engineering and 2005 she completed her Private Pilot Certification. After her studies Claudia traveled to France to learn teh art of making French Cheese. Claudia first became interested in Montessori when choosing a school for her son. Shortly after she enrolled in MTTI and completed her Montessori Certification. Claudia enjoys the beach, nature, and spending time with family and friends.

Morah Batya Muchkin

Morah Batya Muchkin

Assistant L.E. Teacher (since 2017)

Morah Batya is a Florida native and has been working with kids since she was 15 years old. She is pursuing a Bachelors Degree in Nutrition and expects to graduate in 2022. Batya is passionate about volunteering and spent time volunteering with Friendship Circle in Miami Beach as well as Magen David Edom in Israel. She also spent many years teaching Hebrew School in her local Synagogue. Batya enjoys traveling, reading, and taking photos in her spare time.

Aviva Marrus

Aviva Marrus

Administrative Assistant (since 2018)

Aviva Marrus was born in Palo Alto California. She began her career as Administrator for Chabad of Palo Alto. In her early 20's Aviva worked for a Manhattan based organization called Cantor's World which arranged concerts and weekends for thousands of people promoting cantorial music. After marrying her husband Yoni, they moved to Mequon, Wisconsin where she was first introduced to progressive education when she enrolled her oldest sons in a Jewish Reggio Emilia preschool. Six years ago, Aviva and her now family of 6 moved to Hollywood, Florida where she worked as an Administrator for Bais Chana High School. Aviva loves reading, especially books geared towards self improvement and personal growth. She is extremely grateful to have found MJM and has a student in every class.

Edmalia Constanza

Edmalia Constanza

Business Office (since 2017)

Edmalia Constanza was born and raised in NYC. Ms. Constanza graduated from the College of Mount Saint Vincent with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a Concetration in Management and Marketing. Ms. Constanza has worked in academia for four years and has a diverse background across multiple industries. Ms. Constanza is currently working towards becoming a Behavioral Analyst.

Miss Sofia Lopez

Miss Sofia Lopez

Assistant Toddler Teacher (since 2018)

Sofia Lopez was born in Argentina and has lived in Miami since she was 4 years old. Sofia has been a part of the Jewish community in Coconut Grove for many years. She volunteered her time in Chabad of the Grove’s Hebrew School and summer camps. She love working with toddlers because she feels that she learn so much from them every single day. Besides for her love for children, Sofia loves to cook and get creative in the kitchen! She is considering continuing her education in the field of education and is excited to see what life has in store!

Morah Roxanna Elkouby

Morah Roxanna Elkouby

Lead Primary Teacher (since 2018)

Morah Roxanna was born in Argentina. She has always had a deep love for working with children and is the proud mom to three beautiful boys. Roxanna moved to Miami 18 years ago and attended Miami Dade College earning her degree in Early Childhood. Roxanna has spent the last 10 years working in early childhood education. During her time working with young children she came accross the Montessori Method and quickly fell in love. She graduated with her Early Childhood Montessori Accreditation from Summit Questa Montessori Teacher Training Institute. She has spent the last 3 years teaching in a Montessori Primary Classroom.

Miss Adriana Black

Miss Adriana Black

Lead Upper Elementary Teacher (since 2018)

Adriana Black, a Miami native, completed her AMS certificate from the College of St Catherine in St. Paul, Minnesota, where she also received a Masters in Montessori early childhood education. She lived in the Pioneer Valley and worked with children in both lower and upper elementary Montessori classrooms in the town of Northampton, Massachusetts. After spending a number of years working with children up north, Miss Black returned to Miami to create a family of her own and dedicate her commitment of improving early childhood to the communities of South Florida. She has worked in both the public and private sectors of Montessori and traditional education. Miss Black also has administrative experience having reorganized new early childhood programs in the Palmetto Bay Area. She loves reading, traveling, practicing yoga and quality time with her three daughters.

Morah Chany Stolik

Morah Chany Stolik

Lead Upper Elementary Teacher (since 2018)

Morah Chany Stolik was born in Brooklyn, New York into a family of educators. She graduated Beth Rivkah Seminary and received her Teacher's Training Certificate in Sydney, Australia. She has over 2 decades of experience working with children and it's evident by the love she has to her students in the classroom. In addition to her passion for teaching, Morah Stolik and her husband run the Chabad Center in Downtown Coral Gables. She is a proud mother of her 5 wonderful children.