Our Teachers

Our staff is made up of teachers, all of whom are chosen for their professionalism, as well as, their caring and compassionate personalities. Our teachers delight in unlocking your child’s natural curiosity through providing the stimulation necessary for an experiential learning process. We have multilingual staff who are fluent in English, Hebrew, Russian and Spanish.


All staff participates in annual in-service training in order to remain abreast with the latest trends in early childhood education. All our staff has a degree, or are working towards a degree in the field of early childhood education.

Nechama Farkash
Preschool Director

Education has always been my passion. I have a Degree in Psychology, have been involved in Education for 18 years and am privileged to have founded Gani Preschool in Fall of 2011 I’ve always been drawn to children and their wonder and excitement for the world around them. I spent many years teaching elementary, High School, Hebrew School and for the past seven years have directed Gani Preschool.

 

Together with the wonderful families and children, we have created a school where each child is cherished and loved. I look forward to another wonderful year together as we watch our children grow and flourish.

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Sheina Matusof

Lead Teacher of Shorashim Class

Born and raised on Shlichut in England, Sheina has extensive experience educating a diverse population of children. Those include working with special needs children at Menorah school in Leeds UK and at Friendship Circle in Jerusalem. While pursuing her education Sheina served as a mother figure at an Orphanage in Ukraine for three years, most recently she has taught and directed programs at Mazel Day school in NY.

Sheinas hobbies include music and singing, baking, creating, and implementing programs. She shared: I have a passion engaging with children, special needs individuals and kids at risk. I’m creative, energetic, and responsible.

Shannon Risk

Lead Teacher of Shorashim Class

“I love teaching because I get to work with children all day. 
They inspire me, surprise me, and fill me with hope and happiness.”

Shannon was born in Aurora, Colorado, and lived there with her parents and sister before moving to Woodinville in 1995.  She graduated from City University of Seattle with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with a K-8 certificate.  With over ten years of experience, Shannon has worked at several private schools teaching ages 4 through 8 on the Eastside.

 

Shannon loves to work with kids and realizes they can be resilient, inspirational, unpredictable and joyful.  She is passionate about helping kids grow into the best versions of themselves by maintaining a learning environment that is respectful, creative, safe, and encourages social development. Shannon resides with her husband, Joe, and their very large dog, Fury, in Sammamish.  When she’s not teaching, she enjoys coloring and crafting, reading, exercising, and dreaming.

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Morah Sabrina Zelezniak

Lead Teacher of Garinim Class

Sabrina joined Gani Preschool in September of 2019. A native of Argentina, she has lived almost 20 years in Israel and in the United States since 2016. She holds two B.A. degrees in Humanities and Social Studies, along with teacher training, day care and child development courses.

 

Over the years, she has worked as Camp Counselor for children with Down syndrome; Tutor at a Community Social Service Center, Preschool Assistant Teacher, Enrichment Teacher, etc.Sabrina is a Co-Founder of the Parent Leadership Group for kids with special needs in her town (Israel), where she also lead the after school Club Program for children with special needs. In addition she teaches Hebrew at Yachdav Hebrew School in Issaquah every Wednesday.

Morah Kendra

Teacher at Garinim Class

Morah Kendra joined Gani in Winter of 2019. She teaches in our Garinim class some mornings and is the After care Teacher of our Garinim Class every afternoon.
She brings to our school her deep love, care and commitment towards our children.

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Beth Vandertuin

Lead Teacher of PrachimClass

I was born in a small town in Montana and moved to WA in 2010.
In MT I operated my own in-home daycare before I went to college.

 

I am a mom to 3 children 16-, 17- and 18-year-old. I have a degree in respiratory therapy.  For the last few years, I have run my own business in home health, caring for the elderly. I am looking forward to being Lead Teacher in the Infant class – Prachim

Mrs. Ketzi Toney

Child Development Consultant

Mrs. Ketzi Toney served as a teacher at Herzl Ner Tamid for 16  years. She taught at the JCC’s ECE program, and was the founding  curriculum coordinator, teacher, and Early Childhood Director for the Jewish Day School.  Ketzi currently works as an occupational therapy assistant in Arizona,  where she lives with her husband, Jim.  She continues to be on call for Chabad of the Central Cascades, and frequently has provided teacher in-services, classroom observations, and consultant services for the Chabad preschool in Phoenix as well as at Gani Preschool of the Arts. Her passion is fostering development, and a love of learning. 

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Dorit Hayadeny

Former ledd teacher and Educational Consultant

 

Dorit came to our preschool as a lead teacher highly recommended by our colleagues in Beijing who had only wonderful things to say about her and miss her greatly. She joined our staff in the Fall of 2013 - 2021. Morah Dorit is a certified teacher with degrees in Literature and History from Tel Aviv University; she served as a History, Hebrew Literature, and Grammar teacher in various schools in Israel, including the Ort Shomron Middle School and High School.

 

She moved to Redmond from Beijing China where she taught at the Chabad Ganeinu School and nursery for two years. Both parents and students whom she has taught over the years remain in contact and seek her advice and guidance. Over the years she worked with many different ages and enjoyed all of them, however preschoolers are special to her and she connects to them in a very unique way.

 

For 10 years Morah Dorit was our lead teacher she is fluent in English, Hebrew and perhaps can teach us a few words in Chinese too, she will continue developing our preschool program which has a strong emphasis on learning academics in a fun and creative environment.