Director of Admissions
School Director – WMS
Sylvia Flood was born in Texas. She graduated from University of Texas, Austin, with a Bachelor of Environmental Sciences, and minored in Art. All three of her children were born in Texas, and she says that while she loves California, “Texas it ain’t! I’m still a cowgirl at heart.”
Sylvia worked in the fashion industry for twenty years, designing clothing and traveling to industry shows. She also made quite a business of selling local folk art wholesale to shops and galleries. Upon moving to Oklahoma with her young family, she was offered a job teaching kindergarten at a private school. Her interest in education came from her own children, and their experience. When her husband was transferred to Woodland, CA, she answered an ad for an Upper Elementary assistant at Woodland Montessori School. That is where her enchantment with Montessori began.
She immediately started Montessori training, and was Head Teacher at the Primary level there for eight years. She went on to direct the Woodland school for four years, but also found plenty of opportunity to intertwine her other passion, art, into the school community. For ten years, she directed the art based elementary summer program in Woodland, and carried her expertise over to direct the summer program at Bergamo for the last three years, as well. Sylvia loves sharing art with young children, because they have such a fresh, open appreciation, and ‘untainted’ creativity. Her focus with children is bringing art and beauty into everyday practice- reinforcing that you don’t have to be an artist to create.
In the process of considering retirement, Sylvia instead was inspired to accept the position of Admissions Director for all three (Edit: Now four!) campuses, and soon after, served as Director of Montessori County Day, the Bergamo campus, and now the Woodland campus.
All of Sylvia’s free time is spent creating. She loves collecting flotsam and jetsam and using found objects in her art. Ideas and inspiration come from natural objects and words and phrases that stand out on her reading adventures. She’s lucky that her ideal weekend happens almost every weekend: reading, cooking, creating, and spending time with her granddaughter, Audrey, who started at Woodland Montessori this year! (Edit: Her grandson Lucas is now enrolled in Woodland as well.)
Some of Sylvia’s favorites:
- She loves to cook for special occasions- creative cooking and trying new recipes.
- She likes surprises!
- Favorite color: Green
- Favorite flavor: Salty
- Favorite food: A good cheeseburger- the best burger she’s found is in Ponca City, OK.
- Favorite trip so far: Boston and NYC- she loves the diversity, history and opportunity.
- Favorite outing: Kayaking down the Russian River. Also, collecting debris on the beach (you can see a sampling of how she uses her collections in the decorations at our campuses).
- Dream vacation: Stonehenge, Thailand, Brazil
- Favorite motto: Goethe: “Once you make up your mind, the universe cooperates.”
- Favorite part of her job: Meeting families and sharing Montessori!
- Favorite experience in her job so far: Hosting and sharing meals with the eight Chinese teachers who came over for a week a few years ago to learn “true Montessori” from our schools. She loved sharing their community and the Montessori connection. Through them, she deepened her own understanding of Montessori, further defining it through sharing her own experiences.