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Coding with Kids


Introduction: In December 2013, Coding with Kids founders Marek Brejl and Jitka Brejlova volunteered to run the "Hour of Code" at their children's local schools in Redmond, Washington. Going from classroom to classroom, they enjoyed coding with over three hundred 4th and 5th graders throughout the Computer Science Education Week.

What followed was a humbling validation of Marek's vision for an after-school coding academy. Over 200 thank you cards were received from the kids with requests to come back soon. By the end of the week, over 80 kids were registered for future after-school classes. Coding with Kids was born.

In early 2014, Coding with Kids founders set up first after-school coding clubs at their children's schools. Fast forward five years and hundreds of Coding with Kids instructors are bringing awesome tech experiences to thousands of aspiring coders around the US, both in person and through live online classes.

Break the Norm Leadership


Introduction: Welcome to Break the Norm Leadership! This is Rachel Saathoff and I am a certified John Maxwell Coach that primarily focuses on developing strength-based leaders because I believe "everything rises and falls on leadership." I work with business leaders and teams to "Break the Norm" of what it means to be a traditional leader.

After graduating from The Art Institute of Portland with a Bachelor's degree in Advertising, I started my first company called Green Card Design. I led and managed a graphic arts team working with companies to establish their brand identity. This experience solidified my passion and skills to be an entrepreneur.

Pursing my desire to be entrepreneur, I started a Mary Kay business, became a Sales Director and earned my first career car in a year. My favorite thing about this experience was learning I had a passion for helping people build their businesses and develop leadership skills to make them successful. While in Mary Kay, I attended a workshop taught by a business coach and wondered how I could get his job. I saw his position as an opportunity to blend my natural entrepreneurial abilities with my passion for leadership development. I took the steps to become a Certified John Maxwell Coach because of John's proven leadership philosophies and abilities to teach leadership globally.

During my free time you will find me coaching youth soccer, visiting fun new places and embarking on "tell mom later" adventures.

I look forward to working with you to accomplish your goals and dreams. Let's "Break the Norm" together.

Teaching Course(s):
EmpowerDI
EmpowerDI
Soccer Camp
Soccer Camp
EmpowerDI
EmpowerDI

BHARATH NAMBOOTHIRY

Kim Pruski-Dehnert


Introduction: Kim Pruski-Dehnert has been working with children for over 25 years in diverse educational, cultural and socioeconomic settings which have included Montessori Philosophy, Talented & Gifted, Waldorf Education, and teaching in Japan, Mexico, India and Nepal.

Kim strives to foster an educational environment rich in collaboration, creative expression and inquiry-based challenges which lead to exploration, self-empowerment and ownership of one's learning. Kim received her BS degree in Elementary Education from Illinois State University in '91 and continues to enrich her professional development through continuing higher education classes at Pacific University, Portland State and the Michael Institute.

When she is not teaching, Kim enjoys spending time with her 3 daughters. She devotes time to indulge in the expansive natural wonder here in the Pacific NW, including hiking, yoga, the fine arts, live music performances, community-based enrichment and multi-cultural events.

Zhikui Ren

Education: M.S. Electrical Engineering

Introduction: I have been working as a software engineer for high tech company for 20 years. I coached and mentored Lego team for 5 years.

Anna Sell

Introduction: Armed with a BA in Theater Arts as well as a Professional Training Program Certification from the Dell'arte International School of Physical Theater, Anna Sell has set out to change the minds of youth through teaching. Although theater is Sell's primary discipline, she finds that the art form encompasses more than just performance.

Sell's teaching career began over a decade ago. Since moving to Portland five years ago, she has taught at several PPS schools in their enrichment programs and is currently on staff at PHAME Academy, teaching a variety of music and theater classes. She is thrilled to be joining the teaching team at MiT as the public speaking and creative writing instructor. Sell aims to bring forth both seriousness and playfulness from her all her students.

Jason Shi

TGA Sports


Introduction: TGA Premier Sports combines athletics, academics, and life lessons to create fun and engaging youth programs. We incorporate station-based athletic skill development activities, STEAM Labs to explore educational concepts through sports, and key life lessons including teamwork, sportsmanship, perseverance, and leadership.

Teaching Course(s):
Tennis Camp
Lacrosse Camp
Lacrosse Camp
Flag Football/Ultimate Frisbee

John Spurgeon


Education: B.S. Computer Science

Introduction: John Spurgeon graduated from Purdue University with a degree in computer science. He worked as a computer programmer at Intel Corporation for twenty years and currently teaches AP Computer Science courses at Valley Catholic High School.

Ali Wayne


Introduction: Ali Wayne is a career teacher who works with people of all ages to continue to learn and grow. With a start and extensive experience in early childhood education (ECE), her focus had been in helping people to reach their potential with continued education and support.

Ali believes that all children deserve the same opportunities to educate themselves and grow. The world depends on the generations of people younger than us. If we ignore them, they too will ignore us. If we teach them, they will learn to do better for themselves and the world around them.

Ali has worked in the ECE field collectively for 23 years. She brings with her the experiences of working with large corporations, non-profit childcare, and both public and private school systems. She uses this knowledge and experience to enhance the MiT schools education system and programs.

While Ali has received certificates, diplomas, and accreditations in the ECE field, she continues adding to her education with classes and training every year.

We welcome Ali as she joins MiT as our Director of Education.

Teaching Course(s):
Water Works - Field-trip : Jackson Bottom wetlands
Water works - Field-trip : Water Park
Photosynthesis - Field-trip : Rose Garden
Photosynthesis - Field-trip : Japanese Garden
Endless Summer - Field-trip : Oaks Park
After-School Program

Eric Winger


Introduction: Eric Winger is a noted Speech Teacher, Coach, and Engineer. He has been presenting and coaching for 8 years and has given hundreds of speeches, workshops, and presentations. Eric coaches students aged eight to eighty.

His speech teaching philosophy is that every student is a unique individual with special gifts to enhance and challenges to overcome. Eric understands that speaking is not something you can learn overnight; it takes instruction plus repeated practice to build effective habits which will result in confidence and improved communication skills. Perhaps most importantly, Eric's classes are fun!

Awards:
- 2012 District 7 Toastmasters Humorous Speech Contest Champion
- 2014 District 7 Toastmasters Evaluation Contest Champion
- 2013/14 Herb C. Stude Award for Educational Excellence
- 2016 Distinguished Toastmaster

Coaching Experience:
- Little Toasties youth speaking club founder and head coach
- Four year coach at Future Stars Toastmasters - A youth speaking club
- 2016/17 PTO President / ACMA School Beaverton, Oregon
- Destination Imagination team manager for 5 elementary and middle school teams
- Long-time judge for speech contests as well as debate competitions
- Sponsor of two winning students in annual Pamplin Media Group's Amazing Kid Award

Weishan Xia


Education: M.S. Computer Science and Engineering

Introduction: I have been a software engineer with Intel for about 16 years. I love kids, math and end up with teaching kids math for the last 5 years. I enjoyed teaching kids and learned a lot from them too!

Alec Xia


Justin Xia


Education: Stoller Middle School

Introduction: Justin is currently a 6th grader at Stoller Middle School. He has attended many cubing competitions and his personal best for 3x3 is 13 seconds.


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