Our program provides a safe, nurturing, loving, and caring environment by having a well-rounded, educated, CPR and First Aid trained staff. To assure safety and supervision we keep a low child/adult ratio of 5:1.
- Director: Matisse Michalski
- Teacher: Marlene Bullard
- Teacher Aide: Emily Studer
- Teacher Aide: Christina Moore
Director: Matisse Michalski
I grew up in Cambridge, MA, and started by education at Parents Nursery School, the local co-op nursery school. I always had an interest in theater, art and teaching, and went to Goucher College in Baltimore, MD for my BA in Theater and Peace Studies. I moved to San Francisco to work as a Stage Manager for The San Francisco Mime Troupe for a summer, and stayed. I worked in theater for a long time, alway doing a little childcare on the side. I even founded and ran a theater company for a number of years.
After decades of working with children as a teacher, babysitter and nanny, I decided to return to school to turn my love of young people into a more stable career. I started by taking Early Childhood Education and Psychology courses at City College San Francisco, while working full time for a few years, then began a Masters program in Infant Mental Health at Mills College. The IMH Masters Program provided me with an education based in attachment theory, and early childhood education. I studied infancy, attachment theory, early childhood educational theory, serving children with special needs, families dealing with hospitalization, assessment, intervention as well as physical social, emotional and moral development in children.
My work stems from a deep respect for each infant and family. I know that working with infants and young children means working with families and communities; supporting the constellation of caregivers in an infant’s life. I may only be present briefly, but the benefits of a genuine connection, concern and support for a family can instill long lasting change. I strive to empower caregivers with information, options and support so families can care for each other more effectively, and find more joy in their interactions together.
As a practitioner, I work hard to bring my knowledge, experience and compassion to families, wherever they are, and to work with them in gaining a better understanding of their unique child in the context of normative development. Together we can figure out how best to communicate with and care for this new and unique addition to the family. No matter what I believe or want to change, it is not my work: it is the daily work of the family. I know that small changes can lead to bigger ones, and that each step in the right direction makes the next step even easier.
Teacher Marlene Bullard
My family moved to Sebastopol in 1965 where she grew up with two sisters and two brothers. She married her husband Roy and moved to Rohnert Park in 1976. They have three children and four grandchildren. She began working with young children in 1978 as a licensed child care provider in her home. She has a Child Development Certificate and California Child Development Teacher Permit. She enjoys creating a fun, and age appropriate learning environment where children discover and grow as well as Literature based curriculum.
Teacher Aide Emily Studer
Emily is a Davis area native and moved to the city to pursue a career in graphic design. After a successful career and many years of living in the city she and her husband moved up to Novato to raiser their two boys. While taking time off to raise her two boys Emily became a member of the NPNS community and both of her sons attended the school. After the boys wen to elementary school and Emily contemplated a move back to the working world she decided to stay on at NPNS as an aide in the classroom. In the two years Teacher Emily has been with the school she has been an integral part of pursing our Positive Discipline mandate and has now started to teach our toddler and caretaker program, Toddler Time. She has infused a new excitement and life into the program.
Teacher Aide Christina Moore
Christina grew up in Sebastopol, CA as the youngest of four children. She graduated from UC Davis with a bachelor’s degree in English Literature and an emphasis in creative writing. After college she worked in book publishing in publicity and marketing where she met her husband, Greg. Christina and Greg settled in Novato where they are raising their two boys, which both attended the Novato Parents Nursery School. For the past two years, Christina has been training and working as a substitute Library Media Specialist with the Novato Unified School District. In addition to her position as a teacher’s aide at NPNS, she is also a Yard Duty Supervisor at Rancho Elementary School. One of Christina’s favorite things is spending time with children: reading stories, exploring the world, playing Cookie Monster with all the little NPNS cookies, and having the extraordinary opportunity to positively impact the lives of all the kids.