Anna Chaves - Class Teacher
Anna Chaves' interest in education started during her undergraduate studies at Antioch College in Ohio, where she focused her studies on alternative and progressive education models. She then went on to teach at international schools in India, Switzerland, the UK, and most recently at the Tripat Waldorf School in Bangkok, Thailand. She has many years of experience and training in the IB's Primary Years Programme (PYP), as well as receiving her Steiner Waldorf Diploma from the London Waldorf Teacher Training Seminar in London, UK. She joined Forest House Waldorf School in 2016 as a class teacher and is excited to be taking part in Hong Kong's first Waldorf primary school.
Lajja Mandal – Teacher Member & Assistant Principal
Lajja was born in India and completed her Primary and Middle school Education in Abu Dhabi. After graduating from Mumbai University in Microbiology and Genetic Engineering, Lajja’s passion gravitated towards teaching. She went on to also earn a Bachelor of Education at Mumbai University. She served as a high school teacher and a high school supervisor in an International main stream school for 7 years in Mumbai prior to her calling to Waldorf education. Then, she completed her Basic and Advanced Diploma in Steiner Education in Mumbai, India and she regularly attended workshops at Khandala held by the President of Anthroposopical society in India and also attended the AWTC at Hyderabad and Manila. She has also received training in Basic Eurythmy.
Lajja has worked at a Waldorf School in Mumbai for over 13 years. During this time, Lajja has been both a Grades teacher and high school guardian. She was sent by her school to attend an exchange program for teachers at the Edinburgh Steiner School . In her high school role, Lajja specialized in Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and History of Art. Besides teaching, she has contributed a lot to many other aspects of school development, including curriculum development, administration, mentoring teachers, and parent induction and education.
Madeleine Volschenk - Class Teacher
Madeleine studied drama at the University of Pretoria, South Africa and freelanced for two years in the film industry at various film houses. However, she wanted a more fulfilling job, so, she went back to university to obtain a teacher training certificate. During this time she studied mathematics part-time at the University of South Africa and obtained qualifications to teach maths to middle school students. She subsequently taught for twenty years at a government school in Cape Town. She was happy, but then the Waldorf curriculum crossed her path and changed the way she thought about teaching forever. She did a basic course in Waldorf Education at Michael Oak Waldorf School in Cape Town, and six months later, began teaching senior students at Constantia Waldorf School. She continued with her training while teaching maths to Classes 8 and 9 and drama to the secondary school. Being the head of drama, she was involved with the performances of the primary school. As a published writer, she also helped secondary students with their writing skills. She served on the College of Teachers and was the High School Chair for three years. In 2017 she came to Hong Kong and taught drama and English at local primary schools. She is an enthusiastic teacher, she prepares well and can think on her feet. She has a deep understanding of the developmental stages of the child and is excited to be back at a Waldorf School!
Maryann Fynn - Vice-Principal
Maryann Fynn refers to herself as a late bloomer. She joined the teaching profession after working for 14 years at one of the major banks in South Africa. After that she stayed at home for nine years rearing her two children. It was only when her youngest son started high school that she joined the Centre for Creative Education in Cape Town, South Africa, from which she graduated with distinction in 2010 with a bachelor’s in education degree. Maryann took over a Grade 2 class at Gaia Waldorf School in Cape Town and stayed with them for two and a half years. She travelled across Brazil for three months and came back to take over a Grade 3 class at Imhoff Waldorf School Cape Town. She stayed with the class until the end of Grade 7 as their class teacher. During her sabbatical year she furthered her studies and completed her honours in education at the University of Cape Town focussing on the mentoring of newly qualified teachers.
Maryann is passionate about teaching, especially maths, and simply loves the Waldorf approach where she feels encouraged to always find creative and interesting ways to bring learning to the children. Her approach to teaching is one of fun and on-going learning. Maryann is very excited about the opportunity to teach in a foreign country and to learn about its beautiful culture. She is looking forward to contribute to the development of this young pioneering school in Hong Kong.
Rohini Bhatnagar – Class Teacher
Rohini Bhatnagar has been an integral part of the teaching fraternity for the last 35 years She was educated in New Delhi where she obtained her degree in Psychology, Political Science, English and History from the Delhi University in 1983. With her heart set to explore the limitless possibilities of the teaching profession, she completed her diploma in early childhood educational care and primary teachers training. After relocating to Mumbai in 1984 she continued teaching in the pre-primary section of a Mainstream and an International school. In 2009 she found her calling in the first Waldorf School of Mumbai and worked with them from 2009 to 2019 in the primary section, successfully completing 3 cycles of grade 1,2,3. She further deepened her understanding by completing her Advanced Diploma in Steiner Education from Mumbai in 2015.
Rohini also had the wonderful opportunity to travel with the high school students on a cultural exchange program for teachers and students to Paris, Dornach and Germany in 2014. Besides teaching she has been very active in her school community building events and supported the school by carrying out regular orientation of Waldorf Education for the parents. She is determined to contribute towards the growth of Waldorf movement with great hope and joy.
Sandise Ngxumsa – Eurythmy teacher
Sandise Ngxumsa was born in Cape Town, South Africa. Growing up he had always loved the performing arts. He has taken part in big projects like the 2010 FIFA World Cup opening ceremony. He obtained his BA in Eurythmy at the Centre for Creative Education, Kairos Eurythmy in Cape Town, South Africa in 2016. He is the first black male Eurythmist in the world. He has done performance tours around Europe in places like Switzerland and Germany.
Sandise began teaching Eurythmy at a Waldorf high school in South Africa in 2016. In 2018 he started teaching from playgroup up to primary school level. He has noticed and experienced how Eurythmy awakens the children and fills them with joy and enthusiasm. Through his experience he has come to understand how Eurythmy nourishes the soul and strengthens the body of children. Sandise is a creative teacher with a lot to share with the Hong Kong community. He is here not just to teach, but also to learn and expand his knowledge as a teacher. He goes by the saying “I love what I do and what I do loves me too”. Movement is life and without movement there is no life.
Wincy Chan – Class Teacher
Wincy was born and raised in Hong Kong. She obtained her degree in Fine Arts at Ohio State University in 2006 and obtained a Post Graduate Diploma of Education from the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2010. Wincy served as a primary and secondary art teacher at a local school from 2007 to 2015. She also taught art education to early childhood educators and parents at the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (IVE) for a few years.
After her first son was born, she encountered Waldorf education and discovered its holistic approach to education. In 2013, Wincy further immersed herself in Waldorf education by attending the Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher Training course in Hong Kong and participated in various workshops and lectures. In 2019, Wincy started the Waldorf Grade School Teacher Training in Chengdu. Wincy is excited to be part of Forest House Waldorf School in Hong Kong.
Daisy Cheng - Mandarin Teacher
Daisy Cheng has more than ten years of teaching experience in international schools in Hong Kong. She received her Master’s Degree in Behavioral Health and a Bachelor of Education from The University of Hong Kong.
She believes wholesome education that honours the body, mind and spirit prepares children to be loving, creative and responsive as they grow.
Since 2017, she has developed workshops that help children connect with their true selves and with nature in love. She believes Waldorf pedagogy opens a door for her to implement teachings that nourish children’s hearts, minds and hands to express their innate potential and live in harmony and unity.
Through language immersion and interactive activities, she and her team are enthusiastic about helping students at Forest House Waldorf School to appreciate the beauty of the Chinese language, explore the wonders from its ancient civilisation, and apply the wisdom of its culture in their lives.
Daisy enjoys walks in nature, singing and drawing.
Mattiolni Li - Mandarin Teacher
Mattiolni (Matt) Li was born in Beijing where he attended school. Matt completed his Bachelor’s degree in Teaching English as a Second Language and Master’s degree in Translation and Bilingual Communication at Hong Kong Baptist University. He has eight years of teaching experience and is certified to teach both in Hong Kong and mainland China. He is also accredited as a senior teacher in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language by the International Chinese Language Teachers Association.
Matt is an enthusiastic and caring person. During his university vacation, he interned at a travel agency in Chicago, USA. He also worked as a volunteer in Cambodia, teaching underprivileged children English and Chinese.
Matt loves travelling. He has been to Australia, Cambodia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Thailand and the United States of America. Magnificent natural views never fail to fascinate him and he loves to communicate with people from various cultures. He also likes singing and playing sports such as football and table tennis.
Matt is excited to be a part of Forest House Waldorf School and is looking forward to making his contribution to our Waldorf family.
Summer Liang - Mandarin Teacher
Summer Liang was born in Xi’an, China, and obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language from Xi’an International Studies University in 2015. She moved to Hong Kong to continue her studies, and obtained a Master’s Degree with Distinction in Chinese Linguistics from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2017. She was awarded the Prize for Distinguished Postgraduate Students 2016/17.
During her studies, she worked as an assistant instructor for the University of Virginia in Shanghai Intensive Chinese Language Summer Program, teaching Chinese to students from Yale University and the University of Virginia for two months in 2016.
As Summer is passionate about teaching and enjoys researching the teaching of Chinese, she joined the research team at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 2017 as a research assistant. Her working experience with the research team and the Hong Kong Education Bureau gave her a deep understanding of teaching non-Chinese-speaking students in Hong Kong.
She then worked as a Mandarin teacher and class teacher at an English primary school in Hong Kong from 2019 to 2021. She taught Chinese to grade 1, 5 and 6 Cantonese-speaking students and grade 2 non-Chinese-speaking students. She also developed a school-based Chinese curriculum for non-Chinese-speaking students. In 2021 she completed her teaching qualification, obtaining a Postgraduate Certificate of Education from the University of Sunderland (UK). Summer is really excited to join the Forest House team.
ADMINISTRATION & SUPPORT
Corraine Chung – Administration and Marketing Officer
Corraine has worked in the marketing & PR field for few years. Her strength and passion is to work closely with people and she believes that a good idea needs a good communicator. Corraine majored in Product Design Engineering, with her aesthetic sense and experience in Marketing & PR, she will spread the mission and philosophy of Waldorf to every family in Hong Kong. Corraine is also passionate about craft, art and music. In Waldorf education, she believes the teaching approach can bring out the best of the children and is excited to be working with Forest House family.
Daisy Ng - Senior Administration Officer
Daisy is our Administration Officer. She is passionate about learning and teaching and believes every child has his or her unique potential that serves the further development of humanity through Waldorf Education. Daisy enjoys working with community members, staff members, parents, students and school culture. She began her career in education administration in 2004. Daisy majored in Early Childhood Education at Langara College (Canada). She holds a Trinity College London Vocal Grade 8, and currently teaching singing in her leisure time. Additionally, Daisy is a licensed First Aider and she enjoys photography and outdoor activities.
Kitty Lai - Housekeeper
Kitty is the housemother at Forest House Waldorf School. She joined in May 2014, taking care of the children traveling on the bus, and caring for the staff.
Kitty enjoys working in this green environment, and being with the children is one of the happiest jobs she has had.
Wendy Wong – Accountant & Human Resources
Wendy has 14 years’ work experience in business management and accounting. She acquired her Bachelor of Business Administration from Simon Fraser University in Canada and started her career as an auditor in Hong Kong. However, she was not satisfied with the steady and comfy professional title and she began her journey into business management. After she gained her ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) qualification and her first child was born, Wendy was introduced and attracted to the pedagogy of Waldorf education. She is glad to be part of taking Waldorf Education in Hong Kong to the next level.