Play Group Team
Marcia Wise, Play Group Teacher
Marcia Wise graduated from Moravian College with a Bachelor's degree in Social Work and started her career working with disabled children and adults. In 1991, Marcia began teaching at Gwynedd Friends School, helping to develop the Play Group program. She became the Quaker Outreach and Service Project Coordinator in 2016.
Marcia provides a warm and welcoming classroom experience for our youngest students. As this is often a first school experience for families, she takes great care in helping each child adjust to goodbyes and begin to socialize with other children. Marcia believes that this is an important step for parents also, and invites parents into the classroom throughout the year as "helping parents." Marcia has a passion for playing and working with children outdoors. She takes great pride in the creation and maintenance of our School’s vegetable and butterfly garden. Marcia also serves as the Clerk of our Playground Subcommittee.
As a longtime member of Gwynedd Meeting, Marcia has been influenced by the Quaker belief in service to others. In 2005, she organized Parents Serving the Community (PSC). As coordinator of this group, Marcia leads monthly meetings with the members of PSC and helps develop and support service projects for our school community.
Megan Shah, Play Group Teacher
Megan Shah started working at Gwynedd Friends in 2014 as a Play Group and afternoon assistant teacher. She considers herself fortunate to share a classroom with her mother as lead teacher, and her children as students. She has a Bachelor's Degree from Wesleyan University, where she majored in Government with a concentration in Public Policy, including coursework in Education Policy.
Megan grew up as a member of Gwynedd Friends Meeting, attended preschool and peace camp as a child and worked at both as a young adult. Before she started working with the Play Group, she was an assistant teacher and coach at Germantown Friends School. Megan also has experience as a crossword puzzle editor and running store manager. Megan feels the teacher's role is to provide a caring and safe environment in which to support children as they navigate making friends, learning new skills, and exploring the world around them. She sees children as natural artists and scientists, with every day bringing new experiences. Megan feels strongly about the value of movement and time outdoors. As a lifelong Quaker, she thinks early childhood is the perfect time to start learning about things like equality and stewardship of our environment and communities.
Jaclyn Chmielewski, Assistant Play Group Teacher
Jaclyn graduated from Ashford University in 2012 with her Bachelor's degree in both Psychology and Child Development. She has always had a passion for working with children. Jaclyn spent five years as both an assistant teacher for infants through school-age children and as a lead teacher for one- and two-year-olds. She also has worked as a camp counselor. After graduating, Jaclyn pursued a career as a Behavior Therapist working with children with special needs for three years.
In 2015, Jaclyn became a mother and chose to stay home and raise her daughter. While searching for the perfect preschool for her daughter, Jaclyn discovered Friends education and fell in love with the philosophy. When she sent her daughter to Gwynedd Friends School, the spark she formally had for teaching was reignited. Jaclyn can’t wait to join the Play Group team and introduce children to the joys of learning.
In her spare time Jaclyn enjoys reading, running and cooking for her family.
Tiffany Lehman, Assistant Play Group Teacher
Bio to Come