Meet The Preschool at Forty Carrots Educators

Preschool Director, Flora Oynick, M.A. and a B.A. in Education, with a Certificate in Early Childhood Education. Flora's background is rooted in over 30 years of Early Childhood teaching and management. After moving to Sarasota from Mexico City, Flora has worked in Early Childhood settings as an administrator, developing curriculum, finding and creating opportunities for professional development for her staff and herself, and building relationships with children and families. Prior to becoming the Preschool Director, Flora most recently worked as a Forty Carrots Parenting Educator at the Sarasota and Manatee County Libraries. When Flora is not at Forty Carrots she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, reading and traveling. 

Amanda W., M.A. in Psychology, Elementary Education (K-6), Certified Elementary K-6 and VPK, Management and HR Training and Development. Amanda joined the Forty Carrots staff in 2005 and has enjoyed teaching in the Charlie, Dart and Davis rooms. She has also taught kindergarten and middle school science. Prior to working at Forty Carrots, Amanda worked as a caregiver for special needs preschoolers. When Amanda is not at Forty Carrots she enjoys cooking, traveling, swimming and spending time with her two school-age daughters.

Ashlyn, B.S. in Family & Child Sciences from Florida State University, was raised in Sarasota but spent the last two years teaching 2-4 year olds at a preschool in Tallahassee. She has been trained in Conscious Discipline, a classroom management and social-emotional approach to learning. She has been focusing on the benefits of Conscious Discipline in the classroom especially the opportunity to teach critical life skills while responding to daily conflicts. Growing up, Ashlyn was a competitive gymnast so she is always looking for opportunities to incorporate movement into learning.

Barbie, M.A. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Northern Colorado and B.A. from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Barbie taught preschool and Kindergarten classes in Colorado before moving to Sarasota in 1998. She taught grades 3 and 4 and  primarily grade 5 for the past 20 years at Sarasota Christian School. She also taught elementary school art and worked with learning support students. Barbie supports all the teachers at Forty Carrots, she is the Wing 2 and Wing 3 floater. Barbie adores teaching and introducing children to our wonderful and amazing world. She is currently spending her free time taking tennis and dancing lessons, watching beautiful birds coming to her bird feeders and biking around Sarasota on her tandem bicycle. She is married with three grown children. She also loves to play with her dachshund puppy named Daisy.

Debbie, C.D.A. has been with Forty Carrots since it opened in 1993. Her passion is working with children and their families. Debbie loves her job and looks forward to every day. She is married with two grown children and two grandchildren. When not in the Grace room, Debbie loves to read, boat, cook and spend time with her family.

Jaana, B.S. in Sociology from Northern Arizona University. Currently enrolled in M.A. Human Development program at Pacific Oaks College. Jaana began her career in early childhood in her hometown of San Francisco in 1990 and has taught in many schools in California After moving to Sarasota in 2003, she taught at Children First, Swiss Day Preschool and now at Forty Carrots in the Dart room. Jaana is passionate about teaching in early childhood because it is the beginning of a lifetime of learning. She enjoys creating an environment that is inclusive and child centered with an emphasis on building relationships that bridges home and school together for families. When Jaana is not at Forty Carrots she enjoys being with her husband and daughter or traveling to visit family and friends. 

Lauren, B.S. in Elementary Education from The University of South Florida has been teaching at Forty Carrots since 2009.  She is originally from Chicago. Teaching is Lauren’s passion. You will find her working in the Chadwick room while writing, reading and dancing with the children, getting messy with art, or leading our school’s assembly every Wednesday.

Mary Jane has been working at Forty Carrots since 1995. During this time, she has facilitated classes in the Parenting Center and On Wheels, has been a classroom teacher in the preschool, and is the Wing 1 floater and early care provider. Mary Jane enjoys interacting with the children, while watching and helping them grow. Mary Jane has two grown college graduate children.

Molly, B.F.A. in dance has joined the Forty Carrots family as a lead teacher in the Charlie classroom. She was born and raised in Bloomingdale, NJ where she studied dance from the age of 5. At the age of 13 she performed professionally with the touring show of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular Show. She continued on to study dance, multimedia, and theater arts at the Academy for Visual and Performing Arts. She then earned her degree from the Rutgers State University, Mason Gross School of the Arts. Molly has worked with children for over 10 years as a dance instructor and a program/operations director for children’s camp programs. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her husband and her daughter.

Nancy, B.S. in Elementary Education from the University of Florida. Nancy was born and raised in Sarasota and has always had a job working with children! From running her own summer camp for her son and his friends, to now managing a tutoring business; children are her passion! Nancy has nine years experience teaching elementary school and three years experience teaching mommy and me classes. She is thrilled to be working at Forty carrots as the Science Teacher and supporting the Chadwick and Daisy classrooms. Nancy is excited to provide daily, hands on science discovery that will extend the curriculum of all the preschool classes. While not working, Nancy loves to spend quality time with her high school aged son, husband, parents, family and friends!  

Rachel, B.A. in Child & Family Studies has been working at Forty Carrots since 2013 in the Daisy Class.  She was born and raised in Nashville, TN, but relocated to Sarasota five years ago.  She earned her degree from the University of Tennessee and has taught children from Pre-K through 5th grade over the last eleven years. Her passion is working with children and introducing them to new and exciting ideas every day.  Rachel's goals in the classroom are to keep the children challenged and engaged, while still maintaining a fun and entertaining learning environment.

Rebecca, M.A. in Clinical Psychology with a child/family concentration and a B.S. in Psychology with a minor in PreK/Primary Education has been employed at Forty Carrots since 2006. She was born and raised in Nashville before relocating to Sarasota. She earned her degree from the University of Tennessee and has taught children from Pre-K through 5th grade. Rebecca's background includes a strong emphasis on PreK/Primary years and Montessori training, as well as child development and family systems. Rebecca was the former Preschool Director and has worked as a Parenting Educator and Preschool classroom teacher. Rebecca brings with her a long history and firm commitment to the mission of Forty Carrots. 

Therese, B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the University of South Florida. This is Therese's fourth year at Forty Carrots. While teaching, she likes to share and incorporate experiences from her native Sweden and other places she has traveled while working in the fly-fishing industry. When not at Forty Carrots, Therese enjoys spending time with her family.    

Trish, B.A., Elementary Education from Elon University in North Carolina. She joined the Forty Carrots in Spring 2014. Prior to that she was home with her twin boys for six years and worked part time as an aide at their preschool. Her background includes work in the fields of elementary education, early childhood development, child protection, and adult education. She loves working with children and enjoys seeing them learn and grow through a variety of experiences including play, exploration and creativity. When she is not at Forty Carrots, Trish loves spending time with her family, reading, crafting, cooking and walking.