Bethany Spinler

Principal

spinlerb@bsd405.org

I grew up in upstate NY and graduated from Randolph Central School in 1991. I earned a B.S. in Neurology and a M.A. in Science Education from Cornell University. I taught chemistry, AP Chemistry, AP Biology, and integrated science in both NY and Seattle, prior to entering school administration. I earned my principal certification from University of Washington and served as assistant principal and principal of Newport High School. Outside of school, I enjoy spending time with my family– Thomas, Maddie, Mia, GG, and dog, Jasmine.

Mission: To lead innovation and reform to improve student outcomes for all students in our district. To empower students and teachers to be change agents, lifelong, passionate learners and community leaders.


Jessica Heaton

Assistant Principal

heatonj@bsd405.org

I grew up in Kirkland, WA and completed my B.A. in Humanities at Scripps College in Claremont, CA.  I returned home to complete my Master in Teaching Degree at Seattle University.  I taught High School Social Studies and Leadership for ten years before earning my principal certification at the University of Washington.  I interned at Highland Middle School and then worked at Tyee Middle School.  This year I will be splitting my time between Big Picture and the International School.

I am an avid traveler, having spent time in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, and I am also an avid reader.  I love all genres, from non-fiction to a good fantasy series.  I have had to curtail my wanderlust and reading in recent years, as my husband Justin and I devote the bulk of our free time to our two children: Lincoln who is 3 and Rosa who is 6 months old.

Mission: To cultivate and lead a school community which prepares diverse students for equity-driven leadership in a global society, through the development of their critical thinking skills and capacity for compassionate action.


Karen Penewell

Office Manager

penewellk@bsd405.org

I grew up in Bellevue, attended Phantom Lake Elementary, Tillicum Junior High, and graduated from Sammamish High School. I earned an A.A. degree in Early Childhood Education from Bellevue Community College.

Along with my husband Rich (married on 11-11-11), I have 2 stepdaughters, 2 sons-in-law, 2 grandsons, 2 granddaughters, 2 sons, and Willie our dog.

I love riding my Harley Davidson motorcycle, and have been to Sturgis. I also love traveling, hiking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, camping, cooking, entertaining, spending time with friends and family, volunteering, and doing charity work for multiple charities.

Mission: My mission is to make the Bellevue Big Picture School office a warm and inviting place to visit, where information is readily available, and where parents, students, and visitors, feel comfortable and welcomed.


Jamie Ginter

Counselor

ginterj@bsd405.org

I grew up in Vancouver, WA and went to high school in Portland, OR. After high school, I attended the University of Washington and earned a BA in psychology. I worked in a daycare teaching preschool for a couple of years and then studied at Seattle University and earned a Masters of Arts in Counseling. I began my work in Bellevue at Interlake high school. After 6 years of working with a great team of counselors at Interlake, I took 2 years off with to have my boy and girl twins. I then returned to work at Stevenson Elementary before coming to Big Picture.

I love my job and I love working with our students. I am grateful for the opportunity to work to remove barriers to student learning. Learning can be fun and exciting as well as challenging and frustrating. Helping students manage the daily ups and downs as well as supporting families in need with connecting with resources beyond school are all aspects of my work.

Quite simply, I want students to enjoy school…maybe not all aspects, all of the time, but overall enjoy being a member of our Big Picture community and develop into caring, engaged adults. I encourage parents to communicate with me via email with any questions or aspects of concern.

Mission: To contribute to the school community so that all members can be engaged and grow socially, emotionally and academically.


Anne Marie Jones

Counselor

jonesa@bsd405.org

I am excited to join such a dedicated, collaborative and caring staff at Big Picture School and make a shift back to working with middle school students this year. I come to Big Picture after working in the Bellevue School District for the past 2 years between both Enatai and Clyde Hill Elementary Schools. I have a Masters in Counseling from Seattle University (GO REDHAWKS) and am a native Seattleite!


Kaarina Aufranc

HS Language Arts & Advisory Advisor

aufranck@bsd405.org

I strive to create units that actively engaged students, as well as incorporate technology skills into as many of my lessons as possible. As a teacher, I am committed to creating a dynamic culture of learning, collaboration, and 21st century skills into my classroom. I want every student to feel that they are in charge of their learning and that I am there to help guide them to be the best they can be. I spent the first part of my career working as an actress and casting director in television, film and theater in NYC and Los Angeles. In my down time you can find me playing baseball, basketball, lacrosse and any other sport with a ball with my two sons Governor, Jaxon (aka: Hugs), and my husband Justin.

Mission: To offer our future innovators a rigorous and creative academic experience that connects them to real world experiences.


Erica Bell

HS Language Arts Advisor

belle@bsd405.org

I am originally from Portland, Oregon which is just as weird of a town as the show Portlandia portrays it to be. My Bachelors in English is from Portland State University, and my Masters of Arts in Teaching is from Lewis & Clark College.

I taught middle school language arts for four years, middle school social studies for a year, and high school English for five years. I’ve taught in Oregon, Georgia, and now Washington. I am excited to be teaching 10th grade language arts and social studies this this year.

I am passionate about students finding motivation to learn through their own interests, and I believe that through student choice every student can become a reader and writer.

Mission: Passionate in my belief that teaching the content is not enough; true education is attained through supporting and advocating for my students, as well.


Daniel Bess

HS and MS Science Advisor

bessd@bsd405.org

I am a born and raised Texan finding some relief from ridiculous temperature and flat topography here in WA; I was born in the north central region of TX in a small-ish city called Wichita Falls and then I scooted off to the Dallas area for college at Texas Christian University where I earned a B.S. and ultimately a M.Ed in Secondary Science instruction. I stayed in the Dallas area for work where I have taught high school science for the past 9 years in subjects including: Astronomy, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, AP Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, and Earth Space Science. I have taught in traditional settings and more progressive PBL settings, and I have found that I truly value an experience like the one that Big Picture offers our learners – one in which “WHY we learn this” is at the forefront. In my free time I have a borderline obsession with ultimate Frisbee and board games. I also enjoy spending weekends with my dog (Brodie) out hiking, camping, running, dog parking, eating…pretty much whatever you can do with a dog – he’ll be there doing it with me.

My mission: To inspire and enable all students to ask relevant questions worth answering, and empower them to find relevant answers because: 1) they are scientifically literate members of society AND/OR 2) they can devise a way to answer these questions through their own resources and problem solving.


Amy Buckingham

Spanish Advisor

buckinghama@bsd405.org

I graduated from Lake Washington High School the home of the purple Kangaroos. I earned a BA and MA in Spanish from Washington State University and a Master’s in Teaching from Seattle University. Spanish came to life during my study abroad programs in Sevilla, Spain and Puebla/Cholula, Mexico.

I have taught Spanish, math, business, and world language class in middle school, high school, and at the university level. I love teaching because I love learning. I love teaching foreign language because it isn’t just vocabulary and grammar, but culture, dance, music, food, travel and I get to learn about who my students are through their exploration of the language.

When not teaching, I love learning from my 3-year-old Natalie. Laughter is the best part of my day and I get a healthy dose from my preschooler! I also love to create art, read, bake, and meet new people. The greatest thing is my everyday life helps enrich my Spanish classroom because we can talk about and do these things as a class.

Mission: To empower students as world citizens to be successful in life as critical thinkers, problem solvers, and communicators, celebrating one another.


Andrew Connelly

MS Language Arts, Social Studies & Advisory Advisor

connellya@bsd405.org

I grew up in Spokane, WA for most of my life, but I am excited to be living on the west side for the first time. I received a B.A.E from Eastern Washington University were I met my wife. Prior to teaching at the Big Picture school, I lived and worked in South Korea at an international school on the island of Jeju. The past few years have been full of adventure and exploration. While traveling, I was able to experience many new cultures, customs, and histories, that I am excited to bring into the classroom. My goal as a teacher is to bridge that connection between class and world. When I am not teaching, I can be seen rock climbing at Vantage, backpacking in the Cascades, or playing music. I have a lovely wife named Melissa and a blind destroying cat named Fergus.

Mission: To offer students unique perspectives and equip them with the tools to analyse, evaluate and synthesize solutions to new and ever changing problems.


Rebecca Davis

MS Language Arts, Social Studies & Advisory Advisor

davisr@bsd405.org

I am so excited to be on the Big Picture Team. I love language and books and the power of words. I want to pass on that love to my great 6th grade students. I have a son, Isaac, who is 8 and attends Eastgate Elementary. I love the theater and dancing, all types. I enjoy playing video games and watching anything science fiction. I look forward to getting to know all of my students and guiding them through the wonderful world of English Language Arts.

Rebecca’s Mission Statement:

Language Arts…the final frontier.

These are the voyages of the Starship Davis.

It’s continuing mission:

To explore new words,

To see out new texts, new imaginations,

To boldly go where no English class has gone before!


Andrea del Moral

Spanish Advisor

Born and raised in Seattle, I grew up with random Spanish words floating through my life, thanks to Spanish grandparents and cousins. I first lived immersed in Spanish in Barcelona after college, studying contemporary dance and gardening with neighbors. I spent many years doing the same in Oakland/Berkeley/San Francisco, California—and also co-directing a dance/theatre company, writing essays and stories, and working as a cook.

I earned an MFA in theatre at UC Davis, where I taught acting, and then lived in Galicia, Spain for two years, teaching English to middle and high schoolers. I also began translating Spanish fiction there. Back in Oakland for a year, I earned my teaching credential at Mills College while teaching 6th graders.

My classes are communication laboratories, where mistakes and adventurous spirit are the norm. They include writing workshop and literature circles, in Spanish, ¡claro! Also tripping over trabalenguas, playing theatre games that open the mind to other languages, listening to Spanish cantautores, and learning the lesser-known sides of culture and language in Spanish speaking worlds.

When I’m not teaching or reading/listening/translating/talking en castellano, I love to swim, hike, host dinner parties, and play the clarinet. And even though 21st century tech is amazing, I aspire to learn to use a map & compass.

Why I Teach: to empower people to navigate multiple cultural paradigms knowledgeably, to learn to think through non-English structures and perspectives, and to discover how amazing life can be tanto en español como when speaking English.


Godfrey Drake

Internship Coordinator

drakeg@bsd405.org

I grew up in Jackson, Mississippi. I attended the University of Southern Mississippi and I received my B.S. degree in Coaching and Sports Administration. I received my English Language Arts teaching credential from PLU. I also received my master’s degree from Concordia University Irvine in Exercise Sports Science.

I enjoy traveling to the south to visit all of my family because the food is amazing!!! I have 3 children named Alayah, Dakari, and Malia. My wife Michelle and I enjoy taking family walks with the kids and going to their sporting events.

I want all students to be excited to learn and grow as a person. Life happens so fast and it is important for students to enjoy school. School is a fun place to be if you have the right attitude.

Mission: To prepare all students for the real world by helping them have the greatest internship experience possible.


Bailey Edgley

MS Science & Advisory Advisor

edgleyb@bsd405.org

I grew up in Troutdale, Oregon. My extended family is based in the Portland area. I come from a large family; I grew up with eleven first cousins and several second cousins. I am very close with my parents and two younger sisters. My parents still live in my hometown. My daughter and I FaceTime with them every day after school.

One of my sisters is a law firm office manager in New York City and the other sister just finished her doctorate (DMA) in tuba in Tallahassee, FL. Both sisters got married in 2016. We flew to the East Coast with a two year old twice in two months. My favorite thing to do outside of school is to spend time with my husband Sean, daughter Alaya, and our friends and family.

I have loved art, science, nature, and the outdoors for my entire life. I have an A.A. in Graphic Arts Technology from Mt. Hood Community College, a B.S. in Botany from Oregon State University, and a Masters in Teaching from The Evergreen State College. I received my National Board Teaching Certification in 2012. The 2016-2017 school year will be my tenth year of teaching! I am looking forward to my fourth year at Big Picture.

I enjoy having an active, dynamic, hands-on classroom. I genuinely enjoy working with teenagers and making science and math as fun as possible. I am happy to be here at Big Picture; I fell in love with it when I interviewed in 2013. Our school is a wonderful community and I thoroughly enjoy working with the staff, students, and their families.

My Mission: My classroom is a learning community that students and I create together. I will do everything I can to make sure all of my students have resources, support, and information that they need to be successful science students.


Kevin Eiene

Learning Center & Special Education Advisor

eienek@bsd405.org

I have worked in Bellevue’s special education department for several years. While in the BSD, I taught at the middle school level and the high school level – in resource-based programs and in functional life skills programs. In the classroom, I have provided students with instruction in a myriad of subject areas including, but not limited to math, science, history, social skills, organizational skills, adaptive skills and communication. I value the unique educational opportunities afforded to BPS students and look forward to a successful year.

Mission: To provide Big Picture students with the individualized supports, services and instruction they need to establish patterns of school success.


Alison Ferro

Special Education Advisor

ferroa@bsd405.org

I grew up in central New Jersey, just outside of the shore towns, which is not what the show Jersey Shore makes it out to be like. I earned my B.A. in Special Education and Psychology from Georgian Court University. After graduating, I taught middle school in northern New Jersey for a few years and lived outside of NYC before moving to Seattle. Outside of school I enjoy cooking, reading, hiking, stand up paddle boarding, snowboarding, camping and trying to tire out my Australian Shepherd-Airedale Terrier mix.

Mission: To create an environment that celebrates the uniqueness of all students and help them gain the tools necessary to become critical thinkers and lifelong learners.


Tony Granito

Instructional Coach (Instruction, Technology & Curriculum Leader)

granitoa@bsd405.org

I was born and raised in Euclid, Ohio and taught Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies in the Euclid City Schools for the first part of my 20+ years in education. During that time and my years here in the Bellevue School District, I have pursued knowledge and skill in responsive and equitable school and classroom culture and management, professional learning communities, professional development, instructional coaching, 21st century learning, technology integration, and comprehensive literacy frameworks. My wife Esther, cats Jesper and Shredder and I live in Seattle and enjoy traveling, photography, hiking, biking, music, movies and mountains. I also thrive on solving problems and helping students, teachers and schools achieve their full potential.

Mission: I strive to provide equitable world class personal and academic learning for every student and staff member at The Bellevue Big Picture School.


Ally Horswill

PE/Health Advisor

guya@bsd405.org

I grew up on Bainbridge Island, Washington, and graduated from Washington State University (Go Cougs!) in 2013.  While at WSU, I earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology and a Special Education Endorsement.   I taught Health and Fitness in Mukilteo last year.  Outside of school I am busy planning a wedding, bike riding, running, traveling, and cooking.

Mission: My mission is to have every student of Bellevue Big Picture School enjoy health and fitness activities/concepts and to  leave the school with a foundation of knowledge to live a happy and healthy adult life.


Lance Haag

HS Social Studies & Advisory Advisor

haagl@bsd405.org

In support of my wife’s move to Amazon Web Services, I relocated from Austin, TX in the fall of 2013. In Austin I left behind a six year career of teaching K-5 “gifted and talented” students. Prior to teaching, I traveled as a National Catastrophe Adjuster for State Farm Insurance.

Bellevue’s natural beauty and quality of life allowed it to quickly supplant Austin as favorite city. Hiking, taking classes at the South Bellevue Community Center, and skiing are new hobbies.

I appreciate the opportunity to lead U.S. History and Human Cultures classes at Big Picture. I identify with the philosophy and culture of the school, and I enjoy working with Big Picture’s great young people and staff.


Nona Henderson

Special Education Advisor

hendersonn@bsd405.org

I spent my childhood on a family farm in Idaho and then attended the University of Idaho and the University of Massachusetts.  I have been a teacher for 20 years; most of that time has been in school districts in Washington.  My educational experience includes teaching in various special education settings, elementary classrooms, and piloting an elementary lab focused science program.   Out of school, I have been involved with equestrian sports and breeding competition horses.  I have always had a passion for horses and learned how to use this passion to help others.  I have breed nationally recognized horses and have been certified in EAGALA, where I work with a psychologist providing therapy and team building using horses.

Mission: To assist students in their academic, social, and emotional growth. To assist students in participating and contributing to the Big Picture community.


Erica Iris

Art & Advisory Advisor

irise@bsd405.org

I was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, but didn’t stay long enough to get a great accent. After that I spent most of my life in Connecticut. In 2013 my husband and I got an itch for adventure. So, we sold our house, packed up our life and kids, and moved across the country to the Pacific Northwest.

I studied Art Education, Graphic Design, and Illustration at Central Connecticut State University. I am finishing up my Masters of Science in Curriculum and Instruction currently. Prior to Big Picture I taught Art and Stage Craft at the R.J. Kinsella Magnet School of Performing Arts in Hartford, Connecticut. Art has always been my passion, and teaching it has always been my dream… come true.

Mission: To teach art foundations that will not only carry my students through their artistic endeavors, but will also support their core studies and everyday lives. To allow my students creative self-expression in a safe, supportive, and fun classroom and school community.


Lesley James

Research Technology Specialist

jamesl@bsd405.org

I grew up mostly in Seattle, where I went to Garfield HS. My college, Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, was much like Big Picture. Back in Seattle, I taught media literacy workshops for teens, then became a Teen Services Librarian at a branch of the Seattle Public Library. After 15 years there, I’m excited to spend a larger proportion of my time teaching information literacy and supporting students and teachers doing research projects. I love writing young adult books (not published yet, but maybe one day!) and, with my husband, traveling to Europe and studying Italian.

Mission: My mission is to check in attentively, solve problems and meet needs creatively, help students navigate the information seas effectively, and be a trustworthy resource in the Big Picture community for all things research—and anything else that comes up.


Amanda MacLeod

Math & Advisory Advisor

macleoda@bsd405.org

Originally Canadian, I grew up mostly in Phoenix, Arizona and attended Arizona State for a B.S. in Geology. I then moved to Eugene, Oregon earning my M.S. in Geology at University of Oregon. I discovered a love of teaching while in graduate school, and later earned my M.A. in teaching at Pacific University. Since then, I’ve taught everything from elementary-age fisheries field programs to middle school science to advanced math.

In my down time you’ll find me outdoors: running, rock climbing, backpacking, snow camping, skiing, surfing, and biking!

Mission: My mission is to empower students with mathematical literacy matching the requirements of a 21st century future, while guiding them to be persistent, effective, and inspired learners.


Barb Mercier

Community Partnership Coordinator & Career Specialist

mercierb@bsd405.org


Anna Morin

HS Language Arts, Social Studies & Advisor

morina@bsd405.org

I’m a West Coaster, growing up in the Redwoods of Northern California and the farmlands of the Willamette Valley, and now living in beautiful, urban Seattle. I attended University of Oregon and earned a BA in Music and Religious Studies. I also worked as an AmeriCorps member in San Francisco for a year, then moved to Washington and earned my Master in Teaching from Seattle University. After teaching for years, I had babies and fell in love with birth work, supporting many families as a birth doula. I’m thrilled to be back in the classroom. I’m a passionate believer in small, choice schools and feel very grateful to find my new home here at Big Picture.

Mission: to help students become critical thinkers and engaged citizens who care about each other and our larger community.


Drew Oliver

PE/Health Advisor

olivera@bsd405.org

This year marks my 12th year as a classroom teacher and 15th overall in the secondary classroom. I graduated from Washington State University with a B.A. in Communication and completed my Masters in Special Education from University of Washington. Later, I added a Health & Fitness endorsement from Seattle Pacific University and have taught both special education classes (Math, English, Science)-8 years along with PE-3 years. I’m excited for the opportunity to once again pursue my passion for physical fitness and activity, hoping to instill that same passion in my students. In addition to my teaching responsibilities I’m also proud to be the head football coach at my alma mater, Newport High School. When not teaching or coaching, I enjoy spending time with my family- Sarah, Cole (8) and Avery (7).

Mission: Expose my students to a variety of physical activities and allow them the opportunity to find a passion that will carry them into a pattern of lifelong fitness.


Charmee Park

MS Math & Advisory

parkc@bsd405.org

My family moved around a bit when we were young, but I mainly grew up in central New Jersey. I graduated from Rutgers University and went back for my M.A. In Special Education at NJCU. I taught middle school math in NJ for 5 years before taking the leap to move across the country to Seattle. I also had the opportunity to return to Kenya this summer with my church to work at the schools there. I value spending time with family & friends, i enjoy exploring new things, traveling, camping, snowboarding, participating in charity events, kickboxing, and baking. I believe that everyday is a new learning experience and I am excited to work with the students, families, and staff at Big Picture!

My mission is to create an engaging classroom focused around real world context where students build perseverance and confidence to overcome challenges.


Kevin Roberts

Math & Advisory Advisor

robertske@bsd405.org

Originally from Sammamish, I grew up in this area and have always called it home. I attended Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma where I received a BS in mathematics with minors in Statistics, Computer Science, Actuarial Science and Religion. I then stayed at PLU to get my Masters in Education which I quickly put to use working in Gig Harbor for three years teaching high school math. My wife and I have always enjoyed travel and cultural exchange and in 2008 we decided to move overseas to teach internationally. We spent three years working in Mumbai, India and then packed up and moved again to Porto Alegre, Brazil where we have been for the last four years. After seven years abroad and 16 countries together, my wife and I are returning to the US with 3 children: our wonderfully witty and precocious 3 yr old daughter Sofia and our two new twin boys Ethan and Noah.
In my free time (what’s that?) I enjoy watching, coaching, and playing soccer, spending time with the family and exploring new technologies. I am math geek and techie and enjoy learning and researching new ideas all the time, especially when it is something I can share with my students. This will be my 11th year teaching math and in this time I have taught everything from 6th grade fractions to AP Calculus and am excited to share my knowledge and experience with the students and staff at Bellevue Big Picture. I am so excited to be back in the Northwest and to be a part of the Big Picture family here in Bellevue!


Amy Robertson

Art and Digital Media Advisor

robertsonam@bsd405.org

I am excited to be back at Big Picture! I was an art advisor for the first two years the school was open, then I left for three years to teach elementary art in the district. Prior to Big Picture, I spent many years teaching Ceramics, Stained Glass, Art & Design, Drawing & Painting, and AP Art at Newport High School.

I enjoy painting in my studio, reading a good book, watching my two boys play at the beach, snowshoeing through the forest on a sunny winter day, photography, hiking up Mt. Rainier in the autumn, and traveling to far off places to meet interesting people, experience other cultures and explore amazing landscapes.

My mission at Big Picture is to help all students gain solid art and aesthetic skills for academics and life-long enjoyment.  I want to see students create works of art that represent personal vision and involve imagination, problem solving, risk-taking, communication, and reflection. Furthermore, I want to support students as they gain confidence in expressing themselves through the arts in a manner different than spoken and written word.


Paul Spatafore

MS Language Arts, Social Studies & Advisory Advisor

spataforep@bsd405.org

I was born and have spent most of my life in Chicago. Go BEARS!!! Although, I am new to Big Picture and to Washington state, I am not new to teaching. For over ten years, I worked in Deerfield, Illinois as a teacher and coach for a middle school that was awarded the Blue Ribbon Award for academic excellence. When I am not teaching, I enjoy watching and playing sports, hiking, traveling, going to live music, and playing video games.

Mission: To create a culture of intellectual curiosity in which students strive to find answers to real world challenges. To provide students with the tools to become self-directed learners and problem solvers.


Clinton Stellfox

HS Science & Advisory Advisor

stellfoxc@bsd405.org

Growing up in Federal Way, Washington I went to the science center all the time in order to figure out the science behind how stuff works. I attended Decatur High School where I was a letterman for baseball in 9th grade, runner up for athlete of the year, and I took as many science classes as possible. I originally went to UW to become a doctor but met an amazing professor who inspired me to go into science. I obtained an undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of Washington and a masters in teaching from Western Governors University. In college I was president of the Chemistry Frat, they called me the master alchemist. In my free time I enjoy gardening, watching Jeopardy and baseball, competing in milk carton derbies, and using the frowny face emoji. I came to the Big Picture School because working with kids that are high energy excites me. I believe the principle behind Big Picture is amazing and focusing less on tests and more on projects is the best way to teach. I’m also very enthusiastic about the fact that I used to be the entire Big Picture science department. Cesium out!… get it, cause it’s my initials CS and it can be radioactive, just like me.


Michelle Turner

MS Language Arts & Social Studies Advisor

turnerm@bsd405.org

I grew up in Cleveland, OH, and earned my BA from BGSU. Soon after, I taught, lived, and thrived overseas in Seoul. There I discovered my passion for both traveling and educating, and once back in the States, earned my teacher certification and moved to the Seattle area. Today I continue to travel, experiencing the rich culture and beauty of nearly 30 countries! My other interests include running, yoga, and spending time with my friends who are like family here in the Pacific Northwest.

Mission: To help students to be inquisitive about reading, literature, and life in general; develop and improve writing skills; as well as encourage students to think critically, solve problems independently, and work together effectively and respectfully. I am so grateful to be a part of The Big Picture where staff and students share this vision for lifelong learning!


Laura Walter

MS Science Advisor

walterl@bsd405.org

I am so excited to be here at Big Picture School! I am passionate about teaching through fun and engaging methods. I build a classroom culture that fosters laughter, learning, and positive collaboration.

I am originally from Federal Way, WA which is where I spent my first 5 years of teaching. I received my B.S. from Oregon State University (GO BEAVS!) and went on to receive my Masters in Education at the University of Washington. When I am not teaching, you might find me: watching sports (especially football), hiking, traveling, cooking, and being active with family/friends.

My mission is to create a fun, collaborative, and inquiry-based classroom where students are driven to seek answers to questions through project-based learning.


Brooke Weber

MS Language Arts & Advisory Advisory

weberb@bsd405.org

I spent most of my childhood in Edmonds, Washington. I attended college at Western Washington University in Bellingham, and during that time I played in local bands, and worked towards a highly qualified middle level endorsement in Humanities. After a little more than a year of teaching in public Middle Schools, I decided to take a huge leap and teach internationally in El Salvador, so that I could further my development as a teacher, and learn a language.  During my two years there, I taught English Honors, and 8th grade Language Arts. That adventure landed me in Denver, Colorado where I taught at a private school 8th Grade Language and Literature, as well as Individuals and Societies. It was always important for me to be back in Washington with family, friends, good film and music, so I’m thrilled to be in the northwest working in the Bellevue School district at Big Picture.

My mission is to provide students with opportunities to grow as a perceptive reader, critical thinker, and 21st century learner. This includes facilitating their learning based on their own unique personality and perspective on the world, while creating a globally minded classroom that embraces diversity, creativity, and risk-taking.


Eileen Wilcox

MS Math & Advisory Advisor

wilcoxe@bsd405.org

I grew up in New Jersey with five brothers and sisters and attended Rutgers University where I earned a BA in Economics. After experiencing life in New York City, I moved to Baltimore and earned my MBA from Loyola College. Looking for adventure, I traveled west and have lived in the Seattle area for twenty years. After spending many years in the private sector working in finance, sales and marketing, I discovered that teaching was my dream career. I received a Masters in Teaching from Northwest University with endorsements in mathematics and science.

I am thrilled to be a part of the Big Picture team. My interests outside the classroom include paddle board yoga, hiking and camping adventures with my family. I live in Bellevue with my husband Dave, and two daughters, Hannah and Samantha.

Mission: I will recognize the whole child in each student and inspire them to be curious about the world around them. In everything that I do, I will be guided by my values, enthusiasm and passion to do my best.


Rebecca Young

Social Studies Advisor

youngre@bsd405.org

I was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada, but the endless summer heat was never for me and I have found my way “home” to Seattle. My family is originally from the greater Seattle area and I have always enjoyed the beautiful summers of the northwest. I have now called Seattle my home and have been happily teaching in Washington for the last 4 years. I received my M.A. in teaching from Seattle Pacific University and have a B.A. in Art History with a minor in Italian.

During my time at college, I had the pleasure to study abroad in a small Italian city called Viterbo and my love for travel has not abated. With a recent trip to Japan under my belt, I hope to continue to see the world as the years go by. I’m also a huge foodie, a fan of movies, and in my downtime I enjoy playing video and board games.

Mission: To create a student-centered learning environment where discovery, cooperation, and an inquisitive mind are key facets to the learning experience. To create engaged citizens that embrace a larger global community.


Support Staff

Sarah Frost
Psychologist

Valerie Galmish
Kitchen Manager

Erin Ferguson
School Nurse

Byrn Jennings
Technology Specialist

Randy Largent
Para Educator

Margaret Maclean
Secretary

David Mahnke
Lead Custodian

Lori Snoozy
Para educator

Lori Streicher
Counceling Secretary

Christina Strigenz
Attendance Specialist

Rebecca Thornton
Registrar