Juanita grew up in Mexico and emigrated to the United States at the age of seven. She arrived on Friday and began second grade on Monday. She spoke her hometown’s Indigenous language, in addition to Spanish, and worked hard to learn English to communicate with her teachers and peers. At first, it was a struggle and with the help of one amazing teacher who took the time to provide additional teaching and support during recess, lunch, and after school, she was able to persevere. Through these gestures of kindness and guidance, Juanita was inspired to work with children to create a positive learning experience.
She was determined to complete her Bachelor’s degree in Child Development from Cal State Los Angeles and her associates degree in Early Childhood Education from Santa Monica College.
Juanita sought to discover a philosophy that was student-centered where teachers would meet children where they are. This is why she joined Synapse Atelier, a Reggio Emilia inspired pre-school community, which provides a relationship-driven teaching environment for all children.