Tasha C. Ring, M.Ed., Founder, Directress, and Principal Consultant
Ms. Ring is a licensed early childhood and elementary educator specializing in multisensory-based methodologies. She has tutored and taught students of all ages with varied gifts and abilities. Her broad experience in the education field has included sales, marketing and administrative positions with prominent companies such as Kaplan, Inc. and Pearson Education, but her passion remains working directly with students in a teaching capacity. As such, she continues to lead preschool classes, as well as some tutoring sessions and parent-child classes. Her desire to create more personalized experiences for youth led her to the founding of Meridian Learning in 2008. An early and continuous advocate of a “less is more” approach to learning, she is honored to be among the first innovators of the microschool movement.
Ms. Ring completed her Masterʼs in Education, teacher training and certification at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. She received an early childhood credential from the American Montessori Society, one of the premier Montessori advocacy organizations. She has extensive training in several methods of reading and language instruction, including Orton-Gillingham and Lindamood-Bell®. Since 2013, she has thoroughly engaged in the study of mindfulness, and she incorporates these exercises into both curriculum and parent-teacher education. She is a longtime practitioner of social-emotional learning and regularly consults with leaders in this field. Committed to best practice, continued professional development and whole child well-being, her current studies include literature on emotional intelligence and attachment theory.
In addition to her work with Meridian Learning, Ms. Ring has written for various publications and websites including The Huffington Post and BabyCenter. In 2017, she started a mindful Montessori lifestyle blog, and she now co-hosts a large and growing online community for others seeking positive change through the application of Montessori principles. Her most meaningful role is that of mother to two young children, her greatest gifts and wisest teachers.
Aubrey Wallen, M.Ed., Cincinnati Parent Child Center Lead Guide
Ms. Wallen is an IMC trained Montessori Assistant to Infancy, serving families with children age 0-3. She has led multiple parent-child classes at CPCC and serves as the lead guide of the Montessori Mornings toddler class at CPCC. Ms. Wallen is also trained as a Montessori Lower Elementary (6-9) teacher, and spent five years teaching prior to having her twins in 2017, which inspired her shift to the younger age group. She has implemented Montessori’s ideas and methods in her home with her children since their birth. As co-owner of CASA Design, she offers Montessori-inspired home design services as well as supportive family connection information. Her love for families extends beyond interest in and devotion to children’s well-being and development. She relates empathically to parents and caregivers, which has been her purpose since becoming a teacher and a mother. She offers acceptance, love, and support to all who join her environment.
Hsin-Rou (Sharon) Lee, BA, Art and Mandarin Chinese Guide
Ms. Lee holds degrees in studio art and illustration from Cuyahoga Community College and the Cleveland Institute of Art. She spent the first 17 years of her life in Taiwan, a little island full of traditional Chinese culture, bustling city life, and yummy tropical fruit. Over the past 11 years she has maintained a private studio where she has taught students of diverse ages, backgrounds, and places on the developmental spectrum to express and discover the strength within themselves through the exploration of art’s many media, cultures, and worlds. The journey with each individual student motivates and challenges her to learn and grow more as a human being. Her history of community involvement includes hosting multiple Asian culture/art workshops at Cuyahoga Community College, teaching Mandarin Chinese and art in two of Cleveland’s private schools, seven years of teaching preschool and kindergarten, and Reggio Emilia art workshops and the design of an interactive mural at St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf in Indianapolis.
Allyse Sonnega, M.Ed., Yoga and Mindfulness Guide
Ms. Sonnega is a special education professional and teacher of yoga, mindfulness, and contemplative practices. She is also a mother to four daughters ages newborn through 13. She holds a masters degree in Early Childhood Education with a license to teach children ages 3-9, and an Intervention Specialist license for grades K-12. She currently teaches special education at Mercy Montessori Center. She is passionate about facilitating authentic learning experiences with young children, and creating and facilitating individualized mindfulness practices that truly address people’s needs and ensure successful outcomes. She loves teaching, and her educational and experiential emphasis is on creating and facilitating dynamic play- and nature-based learning experiences that reach students at their developmental level.
Rob Schramm, Technology Consultant
Mr. Schramm, better known as Mr. Rob, designs and builds furniture for our urban microschools and helps maintain the indoor and outdoor learning spaces, including the children’s gardens. An accomplished IT consultant, he also guides our technology and engineering explorations. He believes the Montessori approach to be the key to success in modern society.
Patrycja Johansen, M.Arch., Design Consultant
A native of Warsaw, Poland, Ms. Johansen grew up immersed in the latest designs and fashion found at the center of the European fashion industry. She inherited a love for meticulous craftsmanship and innovation, and spent seven years refining her skills in fashion, architectural, and graphic design before graduating at the top of her class from the top ranked design school in the country, Politechnika Warszawska, with a Master’s degree in Architectural Design. Currently, she is enrolled in a Montessori certification course in Warsaw. Ms. Johansen combines her exceptional talent, European aesthetic and deep interest in the Montessori philosophy as design consultant for Meridian Learning.