My name is Paige Lennis, I’m so excited to be joining Spirit At Play as the new Chikadee assistant. I know I have met some of you but I look forward to meeting you all and getting to know you and your children. I’m from Conner, about 80 miles south of Missoula at the end of the Bitterroot Valley. I’m the luckiest granddaughter in the world because I get to live with my grandma who means the world to me, helping her out around the house and property and getting to hang out in our free time. I graduated from MSU with a degree in Biology (Fish and Wildlife Management and Ecology), p.s. don’t worry I was raised in Griz country so I will always be a Grizzly at heart. After graduating I was torn between my love for science and looking for a job in my field but I also knew I had this passion for working with children after I was involved with my youth group at church. So I was having trouble deciding which path to follow. I stumbled upon a program through the Episcopal Church called the Episcopal Service Corps (kind of like Americorps), and signed up to do a year of service in Houston hoping to gain some clarity on which direction to go. It just so happened that the host site I was placed at had a Montessori preschool, so for the next year (2015-2016) I spent my time in the class with 3-6yr olds where I quickly fell in love with them all and enjoyed my time with them and learning to lead them. While in Houston last spring I started taking a class to obtain my CDA. I will finish the class in October and hope to take the test and receive my certificate by December. It was perfect timing for me to come to Spirit At Play, I just so happened to be emailing with Kelly about volunteering here to get lab hours for my CDA class right as a spot opened up. I am so excited to be learning under Judy, I know she has so much wisdom to share about teaching and I can’t wait to soak it all up. Eventually my goal is to attend U of M to get my P-3 teaching credential but until then I’m just looking forward to working with all my new little chickadees.
A little more about me, I’m not a Montana native but I have lived here since the 6th grade so Montana is definitely home. After living in Houston with year round humidity and wearing t-shirts, sandals, and shorts in the middle of December, I have a new found appreciation for our cold winters and can’t wait to break out my jacket! I graduated high school in Corvallis but I have lived up in the mountains in Conner since my freshman year of college in 2009. I love living out in the middle of nowhere, going to Missoula feels like going to a foreign city, way to much traffic! I’m a total outdoors person; I love hiking, fly fishing, going swimming in the river or lake, just sitting outside reading a book, snowshoeing, and all that good stuff. I’m really just a kid in a grown ups body and I’ve always had a huge imagination so I can’t wait to get into the trenches with my chickadees this year and go on some amazing adventures, I know we will have an awesome time learning and playing together.