Wendy Calise was a Montessori student attending Countryside Montessori School from 1969-1978. She attended Northwestern University graduating in 1988 with a degree in psychology and a Masters Degree of Middle School Science from DePaul. In 1990 she attended the AMI Primary Course taught by Liz Hall at the original site of the Washington Montessori Institute. Wendy then proceeded to teach at the primary level for four years after which she took a year away from teaching to attend the AMI Elementary Course in 1995 at the Montessori Institute of Milwaukee taught by Allyn Travis and Margaret Stephenson (in her final year as an active trainer in the US). She then taught four more years at the primary level before going on to teach a 6 – 12 elementary class for the following ten years during which time she has written, presented, and evaluated curricula for the 9 – 12 age group in subjects not fully explored in the AMI elementary training. In 2006 Wendy completed a course on Mediation Skills Training related to Alternative Dispute Resolution at Northwestern University School of Continuing Studies.
In April of 2011 and again in 2016, Wendy gave a keynote speech and presented for two days on Elementary Class Management at Montessori Aotearoa New Zealand, the only national Montessori ogranization in New Zealand. In 1998 Wendy was asked to present at the AMI Summer Institute in Oakbrook, IL, where she spoke about the importance of fostering social responsibility and the benefits of including special needs children in the classroom. In addition Wendy wrote an article, “What is Montessori?”, which was published in the AMI USA News in 1997, in the ISACS Supplement, and remains on the website of the National Association of Independent Schools. In addition Wendy received ten weeks of special training in teaching music by Sanford Jones and has received the benefit of eight classroom consultations over 19 years. She is the mother of three children two of whom attend Countryside. Her eldest attends Hershey Montessori Farm School.
She is currently the Head of School at Countryside Montessori School in Northbrook, IL, an international presenter, a school consultant, and Director of the Montessori Teachers Institute for Professional Studies.