Founder & Director
I come from a long line of educators and, although I received bachelor degrees in Biology and Spanish, I returned to university after traveling extensively to complete my teaching credential. As a student of the world, I love to travel and discover all that it has to offer. Learning is my true passion, to be out in the world meeting people, trying new food, learning new languages and exploring nature. This passion is what I bring to my students. I love to see the world through the eyes of the children and watch them discover. They do not have a preconceived notion of how it all should work and I strive not to impose my adult tendencies on them. I truly enjoy their natural curiosity and problem solving. I created Jardín de Mariposas in 2010 so that my daughter Cate would have the opportunity to explore, discover and develop in a natural environment where Spanish was spoken and valued.
I’m originally from Toluca, Mexico where I taught music to preschool-age children before moving to the U.S. with my family. I have worked as a Spanish teacher since 2011, including 5 years at Jardin de Mariposas, and 1 year running my own home-based program in Los Altos. I attended Santa Cruz University, where I obtained a certificate in Early Childhood Development.
My passion is working with preschool children. At that age, they are curious, they are imaginative, and — most importantly — a sponge for knowledge. As a teacher, I have always believed this age is the best time to teach, guide, and most importantly, learn from them! I believe in teaching through experiences, techniques, and “tricks” to support your child’s learning. We create an environment where your child plays, enjoys, feels safe experimenting, and all of this without even realizing he/she is learning Spanish!
I became certified as a preschool teacher at Casa Central in Guatemala in 1997 and taught first at Castillo School in Guatemala in 1998. I was thrilled to work with 4-5 years old children for two years and then to work with children 3-4 years old at Totts Preschool.
In 2002, I arrived in California and began working at Butterfly Daycare with children ages 2-5 years old. In 2007, I transitioned to teaching children Spanish as a bilingual nanny, and have had the opportunity to travel with them to Hong Kong, Korea, and Spain and to raise my own son! I volunteered in the kindergarten classroom at Escondido’s Spanish immersion program and worked both here at Jardín de Mariposas and at Amigos de Palo Alto.
I’m currently furthering my education by taking early childhood education classes at Mission College.
My name is Deisy and I am very excited for the upcoming year. I have been working in Jardin de Mariposas for over a year now. I started working there as an intern for summer camp last year and I found myself delighted with its program because it allows children to learn Spanish, interact with others, and have fun at the same time. I am currently enrolled in a Child Development Program at Foothill College where I also finished my Associate Degree. I have been working with preschool age children for many years, I took care of my cousins, nephews, nieces and my son, and I volunteered in my son’s school for several years. Working with children has been a rewarding experience and it is one of the reasons why I wanted to work with children again. I am a native Spanish speaker and I will put my skills to work to help your children learn Spanish and to make their learning experience a good experience. I am looking forward to meeting all of the families of Jardin de Mariposa.
My name is Diana and I was born and educated in Colombia. I graduated in 2006 with a degree in Administration and in 2010 with a specialization in Logistics. Previously I studied International Commerce, and worked for years in the import/export industry in my country. I arrived in California in 2016 and had the opportunity to work as a teacher in the Spanish immersion kindergarten at Amigos de Palo Alto. There, I found a very family-like environment and was surprised to find that something so different from my profession felt so natural and spontaneous. It was wonderful to see children’s affection, their enthusiasm upon seeing their teachers, and the way they acquired and advanced in Spanish.
I am taking classes in early childhood education at Foothill College with the goals of strengthening my understanding of early childhood education theory and of generating a positive impact in the development of the child and his future.
I am excited for this new experience at Jardin de Mariposas, to get to know and share with the children, teachers, and families of Jardin de Mariposas.
I’m Marcela and I was born in El Salvador, Centroamérica. I’m the second child of my parents. I have 2 brothers and 1 sister. When I finished my high school, I started my Computer Science Engineering at Francisco Gavidia University (San Salvador, El Salvador). I graduated in 1999. My last job in El Salvador was at city hall of Antiguo Cuscatlan. I worked in the video monitoring security system (CCTV/Closed Circuit Television) department from January 2013 until July 2016. From 2011 to 2015, I had the opportunity to volunteer with the Boy Scouts, with boys and girls between the ages of 5 and 11 years old. I learned so much and I really loved spending my weekends sharing and enjoying nature with the kids. Our slogan was “Always be prepared”. Kids learn while playing. I discovered this is true through scouting. I got married in March 2015. I moved to the USA to live with my husband. I met Teacher Melissa and her philosophy at JDM and I decided to start this exciting career. Now after a year working at JDM, I feel the same enthusiasm working to create an environment where the children feel that they are able to learn while they are playing, because every activity has a purpose to develop in the children all the skills that they need to achieve their goals.
My name is Maite Malfetano, I am originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina. I specialized in psychopedagogy. I worked with children showing behavioral issues or learning disabilities to help them thrive in school. Now, I am studying at Mission College to achieve my Master Teacher Certificate as an Early Childhood Educator. I am passionate in how young children learn and build relationships with peers and other adults. I moved to USA in 2010 after my husband got a job in the Bay Area. We have now two children, a boy 6 years old and a girl of 2 and a half years old, from whom I learn every day. I really enjoy spending time with my children, we play, draw, paint, build, and read. When I am not working I enjoy hiking, running, and traveling.