English Language Learner (ELL) Teachers


Tom McLafferty K & 1st Grades

Greetings!! My name is Tom McLafferty. This will be my 7th year as a Kindergarten and 1st grade ESL teacher here at Seward. I achieved a K-12 ESL license from Hamline University and have taught English abroad in Thailand and Japan. I believe in an upbeat and supportive learning environment. When I’m not teaching, you’ll usually find me somewhere in nature with my three kids. As another school year is just around the corner, I’m looking forward to working with Seward children and families once again!





Brie Monahan 2nd & 3rd grades

Brie Monahan holds teaching licenses in Biology and ELL from Macalester College and Hamline University. Now in her tenth year teaching at Seward Montessori, she teaches ELL grades 2-3. She lives in the Seward neighborhood and loves the community here. Students in Brie’s class love the small group environment to get lots of adult help to strengthen their language skills and earn badges for their progress. Many classroom volunteers have supported students in Brie’s class, including current online classroom volunteer Rebecca. Brie’s class is also welcoming its thirteenth student teacher, Kayla! Watch for these friendly faces in our distance learning class this year!





Amara Chambers 4th and 5th Grades

Amara Chambers, University of Minnesota & Augsburg University. If I'm not at school, then I am probably cooking, riding my bike, or reading a good book.







Kate Mueller 4th and 5th Grades

Kate Mueller has been teaching English Language Learners for Minneapolis Public Schools since 2003. She has a master's degree in Education--Second Languages and Cultures and a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communication both from the University of Minnesota. She has taught both adults and kids. Over the years, some of her students taught her some Somali which prompted her to take some Somali language classes. She loves to practice, so try speaking Somali with her sometime!




Beth Gillaspey Middle School

St Olaf College (Spanish and Religion) & Hamline University (Masters of Arts in English as a Second Language). 3 interesting facts:
1. I lived in Nicaragua for a year.
2. I've lived in 6 states.
3. I played the cello in high school and college.




Kristina Kvarnlov-Leverty Middle School

Hello everyone! My name is Kristina Kvarnlov-Leverty. I am originally from the other side of the Mississippi, Saint Paul, and I went to K-12 school there. For college, I traveled down to Iowa to go to Grinnell College, where I studied German Language & Literature and Linguistics (the study of how languages work). During that time, I spent a year studying in Germany and a summer studying in Russia. I got my teaching license from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities in 2005. I have two Chihuahuas. I enjoy spending time playing all genres of music and going to concerts. And other than this last summer, I have been spending my summers going to National Parks and Monuments and my goal is to see all of them in the US. I look forward to getting to know you all better and learning with you all this year.



Amy Adams AmeriCorps Coach

Amy Adams, AmeriCorps City of Lakes Academic Coach: My educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lake Forest College in French with a Concentration in Business Administration, college studies via Bryn Mawr College in Avignon, France, and Professional TEFL Certification from the TEFL Institute of Chicago. I love to discuss Philosophy with my cat, Veronica, as well as run, play tennis and golf, water-ski, play the piano, read, have fun with my Game of Thrones coloring book, and study Etymology and History. I truly hope to serve my students as a mentor, listener and well-prepared coach and encourage them to pursue their unique hobbies and dreams via fun research. I see life as an endless pursuit of knowledge that is achieved through books, films, art, conversation, the web, travel and more.



Amy Bihari AmeriCorps Coach

Amy Bihari, AmeriCorps City of Lakes Academic Coach: Hello and nice to meet you! My name is Amy Bihari who is an undergraduate student from Augsburg University. My major was Communications and New Media. I have been working for Americorps working with ESL staff and helping ESL students reach goals in their academic careers for the past two years. If you want to get to know me, it takes a few minutes conversation because how open I am with new people and how willing I am to communicate. I enjoy giving aid and doing volunteer work in my free time. If I could do one thing the rest of my life is to never stop learning. My personal background is belongings to a big family of five. I am the youngest of my siblings, but I am the funniest one. They all have children who enjoy spending time with their auntie Amy. The best thing about my life is making my family and friends smile ear to ear.



Rebecca Volunteer with Brie