Specialists

Middle school students choose from arts elec­tives in drama, fine art, music, and creative writing and partic­i­pate weekly in phys­i­cal educa­tion, well­ness, and farm class. Students also select their quar­terly elec­tives, choos­ing from offer­ings such as Japan­ese, film appre­ci­a­tion, strate­gic games, and quiet study, taught by the middle school core faculty.

Jack Anderson 19 20

Jack Ander­son

Jack teaches phys­i­cal educa­tion to the preschool, elemen­tary school, and middle school. Jack has a B.S. in Kine­si­ol­ogy Phys­i­cal Educa­tion Teacher Educa­tion from the Univer­sity of La Verne, and an M.S. in Kine­si­ol­ogy Curricu­lum and Instruc­tion from Cal Poly Pomona. Jack enjoys teach­ing P.E. because it allows him to work with students of all ages and lets him see them grow and develop from year to year. He feels that P.E. is a great time to not only teach students about motor skills, but inter­per­sonal skills as well.

Barbara Ayers 19 20

Barbara Ayers

Barbara has managed the farm for more than a decade, first as a volun­teer. Barbara loves to collab­o­rate with her colleagues to create farm curricu­lum that is mean­ing­ful to the students. In the short-term, Barbara wants our chil­dren to spend a little time connect­ing with the natural world and the seasons.” In the long-term, her goal is that they remem­ber the idea that you can grow your own food, and that it tastes better, looks better, smells better, and it’s fun, too!” Barbara has two chil­dren at Waverly, Joe and Katie, both in 12th grade.

Bio Photo Caitlin Dube

Caitlin Dube

Caitlin teaches well­ness. Caitlin received a B.A. in English from Harvard College and an M.F.A. in creative writing from Colum­bia Univer­sity. A life­long learner, Caitlin completed a post-baccalau­re­ate premed­ical program before her work as an educa­tor with Planned Parent­hood inspired her to forgo medical school and return to her first love: teach­ing. Caitlin has been an educa­tor for over a decade. She is an avid yogi, published poet, and an advisor for Change The Talk, a peer-to-peer social justice work­shop. She incor­po­rates themes of toler­ance, mind­ful­ness, and empow­er­ment into her lessons for all ages. Caitlin’s daugh­ter, Ramona, is in kindergarten.

MS Bio Photo Lisa

Lisa Groen­ing

Lisa teaches English and creative writing in the middle school. Lisa has a B.A. in English liter­a­ture from Lewis & Clark College. She has taught high school and middle school English and creative writing and has also worked in admin­is­tra­tion at Waverly. When it comes to support­ing her students, Lisa says, I get to know my students well, and I pay atten­tion to the things that light them up and the things that bog them down. I try to keep a balance between those points so the student feels capable and nudged.” Lisa’s daugh­ter, Katie, grad­u­ated with the Waverly class of 2010.

Jim Reynolds 19 20

Jim Reynolds

Jim teaches the music elec­tive. Jim studied jazz guitar, vocal perfor­mance, and philos­o­phy in college at Oberlin, Ohio. He also has a back­ground in sound engi­neer­ing, working in the Los Angeles studio scene for over 10 years. A working musi­cian today, he has had expe­ri­ence touring in bands, working in sound studios, manag­ing live concert sound events, and song­writ­ing. His music has been licensed for film and tele­vi­sion, most notably on the tele­vi­sion show Sons of Anarchy. Currently, you can see Jim locally and on tour as The Jim Reynolds Band. During his time at Waverly, students have formed rock bands, wood­wind quin­tets, string quar­tets, and several incar­na­tions of a jazz band. Focused primar­ily on partic­i­pa­tion, Waverly students have a chance to explore all aspects of music and have many oppor­tu­ni­ties to get on stage and perform.

Faculty Bio Alyssa Sherwood

Alyssa Sher­wood

Alyssa teaches art in the upper elemen­tary, middle, and high schools. Alyssa has a B.F.A. in paint­ing and sculp­ture from Syra­cuse Univer­sity School of Visual and Perform­ing Arts and an M.F.A. in anima­tion from the Univer­sity of South­ern Cali­for­nia School of Cine­matic Arts. Alyssa’s animated films have screened and won awards at festi­vals in the U.S. and inter­na­tion­ally. Prior to coming to Waverly, Alyssa taught video art, drawing and paint­ing, and photog­ra­phy for almost eight years at Harvard-Westlake’s Middle and Upper Schools.

Bio photo Sydney

Sydney Walsh

Sydney teaches drama at all divi­sions. Syd grad­u­ated from Williams College with a B.A. in theatre and English. An expe­ri­enced actor, direc­tor, and educa­tor, Syd says, I am constantly inspired by the group work ethic I see and feel in every class at Waverly. Students are inter­ested in creativ­ity and kind­ness, and they work from a place of loving support for each other’s creative processes.” Syd’s son, Harry 19, grad­u­ated from Waverly.