Our Team

A group of passionate, AMI certified, bilingual Montessori educators.

Dr. María Montessori

"It is not enough for the teacher to love the child. She must first love and understand the universe. She must prepare herself, and truly work at it"

The Team

Casa del Mar Montessori Marbella was established in 2016. We embrace Maria Montessori's philosophy and pedagogy according to standards defined by AMI. Our teachers are AMI-certified, they are experts on following the natural development of the child and know how to support children’s social and emotional learning while cultivating their intellectual ability.

Noelia Zaragoza

Infant Community Guide

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Andrea Fitzpatrick

Children's House Guide

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Elia Escriva

Children's House Assistant

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Sara Fernández

Elementary Guide

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Elli Smith

Elementary Assistant

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Leticia Cabezas

School Life Coordinator

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Ismael Sánchez and Victor Ryan

Musical Education and Instruments Lessons

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Cristina Sanz

Positive Discipline Counselor

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Marikay McCabe

Interim Director

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Ruth Coca

School Founder

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Infant Community Team

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Noelia Zaragoza

Infant Community Guide

Noelia holds a 3-6 AMI certification by the Montessori Institute in Málaga as well as two bachelor's degrees in Special needs education and Psychology. Noelia is a Positive Discipline Certified for the Classroom Educator.

As our Infant Community guide, Noelia truly believes in the child and creates a calm and joyful atmosphere for our toddlers to foster growth towards independence and social abilities. She is very creative and a joyful person that loves to play with them and creates amazing scenarios where children can let go of their imagination!

Noelia is a native Spanish speaker and is fluent in English.

Children's House Team

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Andrea Fitzpatrick

Children's House Guide

Andrea holds the AMI Montessori Diploma for 3-6 by Montessori Northwest in the United States. She has over 6 years of experience leading Montessori environments and holds a masters degree in Montessori Education and bachelor's degree in Elementary Education, specializing in Early Childhood Education, Language, and Mathematics.

Teaching, playing, learning, and observing all that life has to offer through the child's perspective has led Andrea to this profession and way of life. Her attention to detail, curiosity for the world around her, and love of the child make her a valuable part of the prepared environment. She thoroughly enjoys the honour and excitement in witnessing the special discoveries that children make each and every day.

Andrea is a native English speaker and is fluent in Spanish.

Elia Escriva

Children's House Assistant

Elia is currently studying her European Master's Degree in Montessori Education by the University of Vic, in collaboration with the Montessori Institute of San Diego (MISD), recognised and validated by the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI). She already holds her 0-3 AMI Montessori Diploma. Elia holds two Bachelor's Degrees in Social Education and Preschool Education.

She also has experience in Montessori for Adolescents and Special Needs.

Elia follows the Montessori philosophy as a way of life, she truly believes in the potential of the human being and enjoys seeing all the things the children can do independently in a prepared environment.

Elia is a native Spanish speaker and is fluent in English.

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Elementary Program Team

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Sara Fernández

Elementary Guide & Assistant Director

Sara holds the AMI Montessori Diploma 3-6 by the Maria Montessori Institute in London and the AMI 6-12 Montessori Diploma by Montessori Northwest in the United States. Sara holds a Bachelor Degree in Primary Education by the University of Vigo.

After finishing her bachelor's degree she looked for a more respectful and meaningful form of education and found in the Montessori philosophy her life career. With a deep understanding of Montessori principles she is a natural born carer. Sara loves being around children and enjoys helping them to discover the joys of learning.

Sara is fluent in English and Spanish.

Elli Smith

Elementary Assistant

Elli holds the AMI Assistant Certificate 6-12by the Maria Montessori Institute in London.

Her background in Musical Theatre, a degree in Drama and Theatre, and a qualification in Teaching English as Foreign Language. She loves passing these key skills onto children and intends to integrate the English Language into student-led activities. Elli has a desire to encourage children to express themselves through their natural interests.

Elli is a native English Speaker.

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Support and Admin Team

Leticia Cabezas

School Life Coordinator

Born in Málaga and with dual degrees in Speech Therapy and Infant Education. Leticia holds the AMI Assistants certificate 0-3.

Leticia has been working with children for the past five years. After working as an Au Pair for a year, she started her career in a pre-school education centre in Dublin, where she discovered her passion for education.

Leticia is fluent in both English and Spanish.

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Ismael Sánchez and Victor Ryan

Musical Education and instrument lessons

The musical education that we offer, is based on the development of their potential, expressing the diversity and richness of their inner world, stimulating their motor skills, their emotional sensitivity and their creative capacity.

The goal of our music education is to show them the world of sensations and emotions that the language of music contains. The student will be able to understand and express this language enjoying it.

The instrumental practice in the early ages in small groups is an efficient way to stimulate their learning. For this reason, we organize classes in groups of students with a weekly session of 20 minutes. The teacher-student and student-student interaction multiplies the methodological options and generates new learning ways.

Check their school of Music here: Royal School of Music.

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Cristina Sanz

Positive Discipline Educator

Cristina is a Certified Positive Discipline Trainer and Educator. She is also a Montessori Guide 0-6 and Adlerian Counsellor.

Cristina supports Casa del Mar Montessori's community growth through online workshops in our Parent Education Program and individual counselling sessions for families. She trained Casa del Mar Montessori's team in 2019 in the Positive Discipline for the Classroom Certification.

She runs her online Escuela for Life Skills in Valencia and is bilingual Spanish and English.

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Marikay McCabe

Interim Director

Marikay received her PhD in Anthropology from Columbia University in the US. She has worked as a researcher for the World Health Organization studying the effects of culture in European health care systems.

Although originally from the United States she has been living in Spain for the last 20 years. She founded Madrid Montessori School in 2006 and was its Director until 2017. Since then she has been consulting in schools and offering seminars on small school management and bilingualism in Spain and throughout Europe.

Starting in 2012 she has served on the Board of the Spanish Montessori Association and is currently its Vice President.

Marikay is fluent in both English and Spanish.

Ruth Coca

School Founder

Even though Ruth Coca's background is not in education (she holds a bachelor's degree in Computer Science), starting a family made her realise how strongly she felt about making sure children grow in a respectful, nurturing environment.

She became an avid reader of child rearing and education literature until she found Maria Montessori, and her active learning, child-centred, social approach to education.

She dived into the Montessori world, got training in the Maria Institute in London, and decided to embark into the Casa del Mar Montessori Marbella project to provide an authentic environment for children to learn and flourish.

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