Primavera Faculty


Dan Jannone


Mr. Dan joined the Primavera staff in 2003 as an Assistant Teacher in the second grade classroom, and continued with the class, eventually becoming a Lead Teacher in 2005. Dan first visited Prescott just before graduating from Dickinson College in Carlise, PA in 2000 with a degree in Environmental Science. Upon graduation, he traveled west to return to Prescott, and worked seasonally as a Trail Crew Leader and Outdoor Educator throughout the West. While working as a Volunteer Coordinator for Prescott Creeks, Dan learned about and accepted the Assistant Teacher position at Primavera School, and shortly after enrolled in Prescott College to receive his Master’s Degree in Elementary Education in 2008.

Dan believes in connecting classroom work with real live experiences. With a passion for exploring and sharing adventures in the outdoors, he organized and developed curriculum for many overnight science and history based camping field trips for students and families to places such as: Catalina Island in California, Glen Canyon on the Colorado River, Wupatki and Sunset Crater National Monuments, the Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson, Kartchner Caverns, Sedona, and Grand Canyon National Park.   

After nearly 2 decades of teaching grades 2-5 at Primavera, Dan became the Director of Primavera School in the summer of 2020. Primavera School continues to be Mr. Dan’s home away from home, where he grew and matured as an educator alongside the other teachers, staff, and students. Dan is a proud parent of a Primavera Penguin, and thrilled to share the ‘Primavera Difference’ with all the families that enroll their children in the engaging and dynamic programs the school offers.

Roberta Benjamin

Office Administrator and Art Teacher

Roberta has been a part of the Primavera Family since moving to Prescott in 1994. Discovering the “Primavera Difference” long ago, both of her daughters completed their elementary education from Preschool through 6th grade at Primavera. Roberta also served as the President of the Primavera Board of Directors for close to a decade. 

Roberta joined the Primavera staff after her youngest daughter graduated from the school. She currently runs the penguin office, fielding phone calls, invoicing for tuition and scholarships, and helps out in all school events and activities, both behind the scenes and during the event. Roberta is the creator behind our Primavera yearbook and an important part of the glue that keeps our community together.

Roberta is a skilled and talented artist, and enjoys sharing her wealth of knowledge and creativity with students at Primavera School. Roberta has been a passionate supporter of Primavera School for nearly three decades. Once a penguin, always a penguin!


Sue Stephenson

Preschool Teacher

Sue came to Primavera in 2015. She loves the learning environment, the supportive staff, and wonderful families. She is excited to be in the Preschool Montessori classroom with its beautiful space and outdoor creative learning model.

Sue has 20 plus years of early childhood teaching experience in the Prescott area. Her credentials include a degree in Early Childhood Education, a certificate from the National Center for Montessori Education, National Geographic Teacher Certification and several other continuing education certificates.

Her goal is to guide children and enhance their joy of learning with discoveries of the natural world. Introducing them to the wonders of letters and numbers in a self-paced, nurturing environment that fosters the child’s inner need to explore the world.

Emmy VanUmmersen

Preschool Teacher

Emmy came to Primavera in 2021 as an ESA tutor and Behavior Specialist. After several months she transitioned to a full time position in the preschool classroom. 

Emmy started her career as a nanny in college, and has worked with children in different capacities since 2006. She has a degree in Human Behavior from NAU, and has also studied community development and early childhood education. She has spent time working with challenging behaviors in behavioral health, working with foster children and their families, and as a private tutor for children with special needs. Emmy has consulted with schools to help bring strategies to the classroom to foster cohesion and educational success for all students. 

Emmy brings a passion for meeting children where they are and helping them to recognize and grow in their strengths. She guides from a whole child, self-driven and collaborative approach. Emmy is excited to join the Primavera community, as a former Penguin and daughter of Ms. Mia.

Amanda Ciampaglio-Garcia

Preschool Teacher

Amanda has been teaching at Primavera since 2019. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Educational Studies with an emphasis in Child Psychology from Arizona State University. She began teaching in 2013. 

Amanda’s biggest goal as a teacher is to let each and every student know that they are unique, lovable and capable of success. She enjoys communicating and connecting with her students on an individual and personal level. 

Amanda’s hobbies include doing art in a multitude of mediums, kayaking and working with the High School Youth Group at PCC. She is thrilled to be a part of the Primavera family and work among other brilliant minds!

Camille Osburn

Preschool Aide

Camille enthusiastically joined the Primavera community as the Preschool Teaching Assistant in 2021. She graduated from Prescott College with a BA in Art and Human Development. Camille integrates her past experience and learning into the classroom. 

Camille has worked with children in many roles. She has experience as an elementary assistant, nanny, homeschool helper, art instructor, and camp counselor. 

Camille grew up in San Diego, California, but fell in love with Prescott as soon as she moved here for school in 2017. In her free time she loves to hike, make art with friends, dance, cook, and play with her pet guinea pigs, Sheila and Nibbles. She looks forward to getting to know each of her students and families each year!

Tera West


Tera started at Primavera School in 2004 in the after-school program. She quickly moved into a teaching position in Preschool. She has had the pleasure of teaching both preschool and kindergarten. Additionally, Tera has led the Preschool program and subbed in all other classrooms. She has spent most of her years teaching kindergarten. Kindergarten is where she thrives and the age she most enjoys. Her students have a  blast exploring the world, learning about themselves, and, most of all, having fun!

Tera has her Associate’s, Bachelor’s, and Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education. She is a certified teacher for children birth to 3rd grade. Her passion is natural science! Tera is a tactile and visual learner, and that is the way she teaches. She also has dyslexia, which provides her a different outlook on teaching and learning.

Tera was born and raised here in Prescott, AZ. She left for a short time to pursue her career in the military as an All-Purpose Vehicle Mechanic. After being stationed in California, Texas and Italy, Tera wanted to come home to be close to her family. Tera is a wife, mother of two daughters, teacher, photographer, artist, and the beloved caretaker of our Primavera chickens!

Debbie Lynch

1st Grade Teacher

Debbie started teaching at Primavera School in 2013, and shas been teaching since 1994. She has taught in both public and parochial schools, and nearly all of her experience has been in the first grade. She also has experience teaching 2nd grade, kindergarten and reading remediation. Through it all she’s learned that she loves small, community-like schools and first graders! 

Debbie has her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from NAU and is a certified reading specialist. She believes education encompasses much more than academic learning. She guides students as they grow academically, socially, emotionally, and physically. She believes all students can learn and it is her privilege to help each student achieve all they can. She loves teaching, learning and the innate beauty of children. 

Debbie and her husband have 3 children, who are all proud Primavera Penguins! Outside of school, she love to read, garden, craft and spend time with her family.

Adria Matthew

2nd Grade Co-Teacher

Adria (Mrs. Adie) joined the Primavera family in 2012 when she came to us to complete her student teaching in the 2nd Grade classroom. From there, she worked on the Primavera team in Kindergarten and in 2nd Grade as an aide. She has been a lead 2nd grade teacher since 2015.

Adria was born and raised here in Prescott and attended local schools. The path to college took her away, where she began by studying creative writing and sociology in Oregon (at Linfield University), and completed her journey by earning her B.A. in fine art with a major in product design from Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles. After completing her studies in art, she came back home to Prescott and later earned her teaching certification in elementary education from Pima Community College.

When she’s not in the classroom, Adie can usually be found in her studio where she works with materials ranging from wood and metal to textiles. She loves sharing in the creative process with her students, and finds that teaching is an ultimate design experience. Adie and her husband welcomed their first child into the world in 2020, and he is full of joy!

Mia McShane

2nd Grade Co-Teacher

Mia has been teaching at Primavera since 2011.  She considers herself incredibly lucky to have taught Preschool, Kindergarten, and 2nd through 6th grades. She has been teaching in the 2nd grade classroom since 2021 and is excited to be co-teaching alongside Mrs. Adie! 

Mia received her BSED from NAU in 2012 and taught Integrated Technology to grades K-8 at Mingus Springs Charter School before landing at Primavera. Her teaching strengths lie in her varied educational and experiential backgrounds. This allows her to provide rich, creative, and exciting hands on learning opportunities. She believes the learning environment itself is a powerful teacher.

Outside of the classroom, Mia guides her own forest-based Preschool called The Hundred Acre Wood School. She is also growing a thriving online resale business. Her favorite self-care activities are nature rambles, reading, and drinking tea with milk and honey. Mia and her husband have thrived in Prescott since childhood and have four children; two of them former Penguins and three grandchildren, one a current proud Penguin.

Patricia Towne

3rd Grade Teacher

Trish started working for Primavera in 2014, serving the school in many capacities since that time. After seven years working with both Pre-K and elementary students, Trish became the lead 3rd grade classroom teacher in 2020.

Trish has an Associate’s and Bachelor’s in Business and Marketing and earned a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Development and Diversity in 2019. Prior to working at Primavera, her teaching experience includes 6 years being a Teacher’s Assistant in Preschool in Oklahoma and over 10 years of experience working and teaching people with varying abilities. She has a passion for helping all children realize their potential through exploration and hands-on learning. 

Trish and her husband have been a part of the Prescott community since 2011, and have enjoyed raising their four daughters, the youngest a Primavera Penguin. Outside of teaching, Trish loves to be outdoors! In her spare time, she likes to hike, bird-watch, garden, swim, and paddleboard. She and her husband are also veterans. Trish is thrilled to be working with such wonderful children, parents, and co-workers!

Becca Pattis

4th/5th Grade Teacher

Becca has a love for life-long learning and wants to share her experiences with her students. She grew up in Vermont with the wilderness and tight knit community. Becca moved out west and graduated from Prescott College in 2018. Becca majored in Elementary Education with an emphasis in Expeditionary Learning and a minor in Wilderness Therapy. 

Becca first discovered Primavera when she came to do her student teaching alongside Mr. Dan in 2017.  Primavera was the perfect fit for her to continue her education and implement creative and nature-based lessons. After her student teaching she joined the Primavera staff as a classroom teacher and has experience working in many of our grades. Becca has been leading the 4th/5th since 2020. 

Becca enjoys elementary grades because she can make a difference and provide a foundation for the rest of a student‘s educational career. She teaches science, math, language arts, and social studies in thematic, relevant, current and fun ways. Her class has an opportunity to play and study in Arizona’s own backyard and cover many themes. Becca weaves in camping trips, hiking, rafting, field trips, ropes courses, etc into the curriculum. She enjoys working at Primavera and being able to focus on the child as a whole.

Kelli Price

Transitional Kindergarten Teacher

Kelli came to Primavera in 2020 as a co-teacher in our 1st/2nd Grade classroom. She came to us after a 10 year teaching hiatus and Primavera was the perfect fit. She loves Primavera School, the staff and the families. 

Kelli earned an AA in Early Childhood Development in the early 2000’s and spent the next several years teaching in a private school setting. She has experience teaching Preschool and Kindergarten programs. She took a break from classroom teaching when she began her family to stay home and raise her boys.

Kelli has lived in Prescott since 2009 with her husband and two sons. They love all that our community has to offer. She feels honored and privileged to be a part of your child’s early education. Her hope is to help children love to learn in a safe and fun environment.

Supporting Staff

Shelli Welch

Preschool Afterschool and Yoga

Shelli feels privileged to have been a part of the Primavera family since 2019. She first began working at Primavera as a Substitute Preschool Teacher. Shelli now serves as one of our Early Childhood After School Teachers. She also leads yoga classes for the preschool students. 

Prior to coming to Primavera, Shelli has a long history working with children. She has worked in the classroom environment and owned a successful yoga and fitness studio, where she worked with children of all ages. 

Shelli holds numerous certifications including a specialization in children's yoga. She feels fortunate to have worked extensively with children and adults with autism and other intellectual, physical or developmental challenges.

Laurie Fowler

Preschool Afterschool Teacher

Laurie began working at Primavera in 2021 after retiring from YRMC as one of our Early Childhood Afterschool Teachers. 

Laurie found Primavera through her sister, Ms. Sue. She is happy to share her time working with children after retiring from a long and successful career in healthcare. 

She enjoys getting to know the children and working alongside the staff. We are thrilled to have Laurie as part of the Primavera family.

John Pigaga

Outdoor Ed., P.E., History/Science

John is thrilled to have joined the Primavera Staff in 2021. After a variety of roles throughout his professional career he was fortunate enough to stumble into the field of environmental education. After spending two years teaching science at Aspen Creek Outdoor School in Prescott, he spent three years as the Director of Programs for Backcountry Unlimited, a Prescott based adventure company. He has experience in leading and creating programs for team building, leadership and a variety of outdoor adventures including Rock Climbing, Mountain Biking, Kayaking, Canyoneering and Orienteering.

Having grown up in a small town in New England, John understands how lucky he was to grow up in the outdoor world. As our world changes, too often we lose touch with nature and he would like to inspire the students at Primavera to learn to love, appreciate and protect the amazing place we all live. 

The goal John has with everyone he works with is quite simple - To connect people with themselves, others and the natural world. In his free time you will most likely find him in a tent getting ready to explore some part of Arizona or Utah for a new experience.

James Schattauer

Music and Preschool Support

James (Mr. Jim) came to Primavera in 2020 as our Music Teacher. Since then his role has grown and he now also provides support for our Preschool program.

Since 1987 Mister Jim has been entertaining and providing music for young children and young families, from the Midwest to the West Coast. With original songs and collected gems, Mister Jim takes delight in inspiring young children to find their joy and playfulness in the magic of music. 

He has a B.A. in Elementary Education from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. He and his wife moved to Prescott in 2018 after living in Minnesota/Wisconsin and love living here!

Lori Prouty

Math, Nutrition, and Tutor

Lori joined the Primavera family in 2021. She has been teaching since 2005, and absolutely loves working with children. 

Lori has a Masters Degree in Human Nutrition and is constantly incorporating the science of nutrition and healthy eating into her curriculum. Lori works with our primary students teaching, Math and Nutrition in a thematic and hands-on way.  Additionally, Lori provides extra support to students who benefit from individualized tutoring. 

Lori feels very blessed to be able to share her love of nature, healthy food and gardening with the staff and children of Primavera.

Pamela Brown

French, Spanish, Recorders, and Movement Instructor

Pam has been teaching at Primavera since 1974. She has taught at all grade levels, and has watched Primavera grow and flourish. There have been many successful students who remember their Primavera experience with affection.

Pam received her degree in Early Childhood Education at Prescott College in the Adult Degree Program. The degree also included Spanish Poetry. She has a background in foreign languages, theatre, art appreciation, dance and exercise. Pam loves teaching languages to young children. Learning another language is linked to a better understanding of math, logic and music.

Pam and and her husband's son was one of Primavera School’s first students. As a family they are happy and proud to continue to be part of the Primavera community.