In 2009, he began working with the Peruvian Forensic Anthropology Team in Lima, Peru, where he led their international training programs in Nepal and the Democratic Republic of Congo. When he finished his projects with the forensic team, Hayden was lucky enough to join the faculty at the American School of Lima as a Design Technology teacher. At the American School, he got his first introduction to project-based learning and witnessed the powerful change that happens in a classroom when students use their learning to address real world problems.
When Hayden is not in the classroom, he loves to spend time at the beach with Lisa and his two boys, James and Jude. He is a passionate surfer, reader and inquirer who is constantly inspired by his students’ thoughts and ideas.
This is Lauren's sixth year teaching with HTMCV and loves working with sixth grade because it is their introduction to middle school. She loves teaching about ancient civilizations, particularly ancient Greece and can't wait to nerd out about Greek mythology with a new crew of sixth graders each year.
Lauren's absolute favorite activity outside of school is traveling - she whole-heartedly believes one of the best ways to continue learning about our world is to go out and explore it. When she's not out exploring the physical world, she likes to jump into fictional ones while cozying up with a great book; her hope is that her "to read" pile never runs out.
Before working at HTMCV, Ivan took part in leading training sessions on working with youth, risk management, and program development. He also led youth workshops and camping retreat weekends for the Los Angeles Unified School District while working as a youth leadership counselor at various school sites throughout San Diego. After working at High Tech Middle Media Arts as an Instructional Assistant, he realized that his true passion was in education. He attended San Diego State University where he earned a BS in Mathematics and earned his teaching credential from HTH.
When Ivan is not in the classroom, he enjoys watching his beloved San Diego Padres, solving math riddles, traveling, EATING, and spending time with his friends, and family. As we all know, this year will be the 9th year of HTMCV, and he can’t wait to continue to work with such supportive and inspirational staff!
My path to teaching began in the Boy Scouts. Being in scouting for 10 years ignited my passion for learning and adventure. Whether it was backpacking, whitewater rafting or rock climbing there was always something to learn and sharing that knowledge was vital to high adventure scouting.
From there I attended the University of California, San Diego and graduated with a B.S. in Psychology and B.A. in International Studies with an emphasis in Economics. I also attended Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia as part of an exchange program.
After college I joined the Peace Corps in Jordan as a Youth Development volunteer. Spending two years there I learned to appreciate the often misunderstood Middle East and Islamic faith, while learning Arabic.
Upon completion of my service I attended San Diego State University to get my credential in the Social Sciences. Afterwards, I joined the beloved King Chavez Charter School Organization and taught World History for one year before switching to my other passion, Math, which I taught for five years.
I completed a Masters in Education in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math at the University of San Diego.
It is my fifth year with the High Tech High organization and I cherish this great opportunity to learn and be inspired by my colleagues and students.
When I'm not at school, I enjoy doing activities with my girls, training for my next triathlon race and cooking all types of foods. #blessed
Elyse has a passion for traveling. She loves to experience other cultures and enjoys opening up that world to her students through literature and writing. In her free time, she can be found curled up with a good book, hiking, dancing, or spending quality time with her family and friends. She feels incredibly lucky to have joined the amazing HTH community this year, and looks forward to getting to know her students and watching them become readers and writers.
Five years ago, Jamie came to the High Tech campus and saw students and teachers connecting with each other through projects. Instantly, he knew that he wanted to be a part of this innovative educational experience where students learn through doing and experiencing. Originally from Texas, he started teaching and working in education in the private school sector as Athletic Director, math teacher, coach, and most memorably, running a comprehensive Outdoor Education program. Working with kids in the outdoors taught him many lessons including the powerful impact of community, integrated learning and interacting directly with the environment and lessons of the backcountry. Compelled to further my education and shape his teaching philosophy, he and his wife moved to New York City where he earned a Master's in Education at Teacher's College. After graduate school, he moved back to Texas and worked as an Upper School Dean of Students and math teacher for three years before making the move to High Tech Middle Media Arts.
However, missing the classroom and the personal connections he could make with students, he discovered High Tech and made the move to San Diego with his family in tow and helped opened High Tech Middle Media Arts in the Fall of 2005.
Now, in California, James has taken to the ocean learning to surf among all the other outdoor pursuits that bring him great joy- golf, hiking, fly fishing, camping and most of all hanging out with my family. James and his amazing wife Julie of 13 years have two beautiful children, the oldest, Gavin and youngest Bella Grace. The energy of the project-based classroom and the adventure of working with the middle school child is what makes his work as a teacher so much fun. Learning experientially and a love of making learning FUN is the hallmark of his teaching philosophy and is inherent in the project-based approach to learning.
As an educator, Michelle is most passionate about helping middle school students grow as readers, writers, and lovers of literature. She also has an interest in all things related to government and politics and is excited to work with students as they develop their political views and voices.
When she's not at HTMCV, Michelle loves going on walks and hanging out on the couch with her husband, Chris, and her dog, Laila. She's an avid reader; some of her favorite books include A People's History of the United States, Americanah, and the Divergent trilogy. She also loves to run and is learning how to garden.
Over the past 18 years, I have gained experience in different management roles within the YMCA of San Diego County. My leadership style is very hands-on and I enjoy working as a team.
I am so excited to have another opportunity to be at HTeCV/ HTMCV this year and meeting all of the students and families.
In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my son, family, drinking a fine cup of coffee, traveling, camping, eating, playing soccer and tennis, watching live music, art and movies.
In 2006, Ms. Maples founded Step UP Theatre, continuing her commitment to provide children with an early exposure to the performing arts. In 2009, Step UP Theatre became a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization, where she serves as Artistic Director. That same year, she was one of thirty directors selected nationally to attend the Directors Lab West in Pasadena, California. On stage, she has appeared in 'Dog Sees God', 'Fair Use' and 'Pippin' at the Diversionary Theatre.
When she’s not directing or performing around San Diego, Wendy is usually on a plane visiting family members in every corner of the globe! She is thrilled and honored to be teaching theatre at HTMCV!
Originally from the east coast, Peter grew up in a family of educators. He earned a Masters in Literature from the American University in Washington, D.C. and spent numerous years working in schools and at the National Association of Independent Schools. When not at HTMCV, Peter can be found in the ocean surfing, in the mountains camping and climbing, or traveling the California coastline with friends and family.
Raineir was born and raised in San Diego and spent the first eight years of childhood living in the Paradise Hills community of Southeast San Diego. Being in a military family, he spent two and a half years living on Yokosuka Naval Base in Yokosuka, Japan. Moving back to San Diego, specifically Chula Vista in 2000, he began playing music and became involved in the local music and arts scene in San Diego in which he is still a part of, as facilitator and founder of LUX ET VITAE, an independent record label comprised of a collection of multifaceted artists known in the community as THE LIBRARY. Raineir is the advisor for LIGHT & SOUND, a club at HTHCV run as a student collective which aims at connecting students to the many facets of local music and arts through direct and intentional involvement.
In his free time, Raineir enjoys listening to Wu Tang Clan while folding and ironing his clothes, drawing doodles of animals saying funny things, snapping photos of office supplies, playing shows with friends, writing and recording music at his studio, eating Japanese food in Kearny Mesa, and walking in places with more trees than people.
He is excited to be back in the High Tech High community in Chula Vista to help keep things working and innovate new ideas in classrooms with the teaching staff! In his spare time he is a professional freelance videographer documenting music events for local tv show NBC SoundDiego as well as working for his own wedding videography company.
After dreaming of living in Southern California for many years, she finally moved to San Diego and began working for the HTH Chula Vista campus in the fall of 2018. Brittany is very passionate about equity and equality, teaching to all learners, and protecting the culture and community of HTH. She is excited to begin her ninth year as a school psychologist and third year in Chula Vista, serving the middle and elementary schools.
While working towards my Bachelor’s Degree in English at San Diego State University I worked as an AVID tutor at Steele Canyon High School, which further solidified my passion to teach and continually grow as a learner myself. After an amazing, humbling, and unforgettable year of student teaching some of the brightest and most resilient 11th graders I have ever had the privilege of working with, I received my Single Subject credential in English. I feel so fortunate that all my experiences have led me to the High Tech High family, first as an Academic Coach and this year as an Ed Specialist Intern. I can’t wait to embark on the journey towards my Ed Specialist Credential and Masters in Teacher Leadership this year at HTH and am so looking forward to building a community that is dedicated to inspiring in children the same passion for learning I have.