Mixed-age Classrooms

Greenwood Friends School is always striving to improve, while maintaining a commitment to established educational practices that succeed. An important next step in our educational approach is to expand our mixed-age classrooms in the Lower School so that we gain the benefits of this approach, while containing class size to approximately 12 students. For 2020-21, our classrooms will be Pre-School (ages 3-4), Lower School (K/1/2  and 3/4 classrooms), and Middle School (5/6 & 7/8 classrooms). We will continue to have one lead teacher in each classroom and will add support staff, as needed. Read more below for the benefits of mixed-age classrooms.

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Annual Giving

Participation in Greenwood Friends School’s annual giving appeal by all members of our community—parents, alumni, faculty & staff, members of the board of trustees, and many friends—is critically important for the success of the school. Please remember that, whatever the size, every gift is valuable and important, and that your gift is an investment in the future of our children, the local community, and the world. Tuition covers about 50% of Greenwood’s operating expenses. Annual giving is absolutely necessary to help cover the rest,  allowing the school to keep tuition as reasonable as possible and still build a community of students from diverse backgrounds.

To learn more about how you can support annual giving, contact the school at 570-458-5532.

Administration


Larry Smith
Interim Head of School
treasurer@greenwood-friends.org

Larry clerked the Finance Committee and volunteered at Greenwood before joining the Board and becoming Treasurer. His wife, Jean, also served on the Board 25 years. Their children – Elizabeth, a local photographer, and Matthew, a fisheries biologist working for NOAA at their Miami, Florida lab – attended GFS from preschool to 6th grade which was as far as one could go at that time.   Elizabeth’s sons attend GFS – James is in fifth grade and Justin in second, so  Larry and Jean have joined the ranks of GFS grandparents.  As veterinarians, the Smiths enjoy all their creatures great and small and their many gardens at home. They enjoy being part of Quaker education.


Shelley Evans
Administrative Assistantshelley 2015
sevans@greenwood-friends.org

Shelley appreciates working in such a caring, nurturing environment. Her professional background is in human resources and public administration. Shelley has an A.S. degree from Brandywine College and majored in business education at Bloomsburg University. Seven grandchildren keep Shelley and her husband Don happily active with sports, dance, and drum & bugle corps events. Shelley has served on various community boards.  She enjoys reading, family activities, and caring for her dog and cat.


                                                                                                      

Jody Love
Business Manager
businessmanager@greenwood-friends.org

Jody Love joined GFS in January 2017 as the Music Teacher.  She  had been teaching private music lessons in the area for several years beforehand. She spent the majority of her career in higher education administration before taking time to raise her children and establish a family business.  Jody holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree and a Master of Science in Technology Education, both from Mansfield University of PA, and is a QuickBooks certified bookkeeper.

 

Faculty

Mackenzie Ford
Early School Teacher
Pre-K
mford@greenwood-friends.org

Mackenzie is a caring and passionate early childhood educator. Her mission is to create a welcoming and safe learning environment for all students to express their own interests and curiosities. A graduate of Penn State University majoring in Early Childhood Education with a minor in Special Education and Human Development and Family Studies, Mackenzie has substituted in multiple grades in elementary schools and recently was a preschool teacher in Selinsgrove, PA. Outside of school, Mackenzie enjoys hiking, spending time with her family, friends and her dog Barkley.


Shannon Kirk
Early School Teacher
Grades K – 2nd
skirk@greenwood-friends.org

Shannon is a passionate and talented educator with over 20 years of teaching experience and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood/Elementary Education and a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction. She is committed to early childhood education that cherishes student curiosity, meets students at their individual levels and creates classroom experiences that encourage a love for learning.


                                                           Marie Wessler
Early School Teacher
Grades 3rd-4th
mwessler@greenwood-friends.org

Marie teaches 3rd and 4th grade at Greenwood Friends School.  Marie has a B.S. in Marketing with a minor in Economics from Penn State University and has earned a post-graduate diploma in Education from the University of South Florida.  Marie has lived abroad in Seoul, South Korea, Paris, France and Hong Kong before returning home to Pennsylvania 3 years ago.  She has taught in Hong Kong, and has substituted in the public school system in Pennsylvania.  Marie enjoys spending time with her family, and tending to her chickens and riding her horse!


Jerod Savage
Middle School Teacher
Grades 5th – 8th Science/Math Teacher
jsavage@greenwood-friends.org

Jerod comes to Greenwood from beautiful Hawaii, returning to his roots here in Central PA. Jerod has 15 years of classroom experience, and also recently served as Vice-Principal for the Lana’i High & Elementary schools. He earned his BS in Elementary Education from Bloomsburg University. Jerod has served as a volleyball coach, Lego robotics advisor, Little League umpire and is an avid ukulele builder!


Deb Zollmann  
Middle School Teacher
Grades 5th – 8th Humanities/Math Teacher
dzollmann@greenwood-friends.org

Deb is a veteran educator of children of all abilities and learning styles. She is passionate about social justice and creating welcoming and inclusive communities for students. She is the mother of four, including a recent 8th grade graduate at GFS. Deb has many years of experience leading transformative mission and field trips and has an extraordinary ability to construct project-based learning that captures the imagination of all students.


dottie

Dottie Grocott
Spanish Teacher
dgrocott@greenwood-friends.org

Dottie continues her mission of teaching for life, joining Greenwood after retiring from public education. She earned her BSEd and MSEd from Temple, MSEd in Technology at Wilkes, and has taught since 1968. Her ancestors were martyred Christian teachers and she strives to support their belief that teachers are to serve the main dish of life with strength: Dignity Integrity Sincerity Humility, served with Christian love. Her ancestors and Spanish teacher would also expect that rather than retire, she devotes her life to the life-long responsibility of educating others.


Jody Love
Music Teacher
jlove@greenwood-friends.org

Jody Love joined GFS in January 2017.  She  has been teaching private music lessons in the area for several years. She spent the majority of her career in higher education administration before taking time to raise her children and establish a family business.  Jody holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree and a Master of Science in Technology Education, both from Mansfield University of PA . In her free time, she enjoys cooking, putting together puzzles and leading the Worship Team at her church.


Ruth Zelanski
Art Teacher
rzelanski@greenwood-friends.org       

Since graduating from the University of Connecticut earning a BFA with a concentration in photography, Ruth has worked as a creative director at a graphic design firm, and has exhibited her work internationally.  She also makes art jewelry and has been published in several books.  Ruth lives in Bloomsburg with her husband, and two daughters who are enrolled in our Early School program.

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Preschool Curriculum

In our Preschool classroom we lay the foundation for future learning by providing a language rich environment with ample opportunity for play-based discovery. Inspired by the Reggio-Emilia approach to theme-based learning, children use writing, drawing, acting, and conversation to explore new ideas and interests. Progress is well-documented throughout the classroom and in the hallway using pictures and narrative descriptions to assess development.

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Middle School Curriculum

Our Middle School (grades 6-8) fosters awareness, curiosity, communication, and critical thinking in a safe, caring, and respectful community. At this stage in life, students are going through significant changes and are surrounded by conflicting stimuli. Greenwood Friends School’s middle school environment is a habitat for healthy, balanced, and mindful learning that incorporates challenging academics, practical life skills, and respectful community participation. Academically and socially, students are honing skills that will enable them to be successful as they move on to life’s greater challenges. Classwork is completed in small groups or independently and assignments and enrichment are addressed on an individual basis. Students learn to find a balance between their particular needs and the requirements of their academics.

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