Camp Director: June 2011
My background working with children goes all the way back to when I was thirteen. This is when I began teaching Irish dancing for 4-6 years olds. I started Irish dancing when I was 6 years old, and taught the art from ages 13 – 22! I still love teaching it – it is amazing exercise and so much fun! Any chance I get, I love teaching Irish dancing at Flying High! I am currently pursuing a Masters in Teaching Elementary Education degree and will be student teaching second grade this semester! Before student teaching, I worked full time with high school aged special education students teaching them vocational skills, which I enjoyed very much. I adored my students and was proud of each and every one! I have been involved with Flying High Camps for almost two years now, and I am thrilled to be working as the director of this wonderful program!
When I am not working, I enjoy walking my dog, Tasha, working out at group fitness classes, cooking, and reading.
I want every child I teach to believe in themselves and know that they can do anything they set their minds to! While attending Flying High Camps, I want children to learn and discover new things every day. It is important to use their minds and get creative!
My brother Jesse lives in Osaka, Japan and teaches English there for a living. He has lived there for 7 years!
I just recently got engaged!
Business Manager & Cosmic Café Director: November 2009
Every since I was old enough to start babysitting other kids, I did. I loved it! From family, to family friends, they always knew who to call if they even needed a babysitter. I put my babysitting experience to good use by working at a daycare center instructing 4 year olds. I’m fortunate enough now to have two wonderful sons that I get to spend time with. We play outside and I teach them the sports I enjoy playing, like volleyball. I play about two to three times a week. A fun fact about me is that my husband and I met when I was 12 years old! Eleven years later we were married, and we’re still going strong!
I would like children here to learn self-respect, build confidence, and use teamwork all while doing the sport they enjoy.
Director of Stellar Martial Arts: 2009
I am a certified International Master in Kukkiwon Tae Kwon Do. As a former member of the Phillipine National Team, I competed in various national and world class level tournaments. I’ve been practicing Tae Kwon Do for more than twenty years, with fifteen years experience in teaching the art. I’m really interested in computer graphics, and I used to make TV commercials and do 3D animation video editing. One commercial I did included my own pictures, but you couldn’t notice it unless you really looked closely.
I want my students to develop respect, discipline, focus, confidence, and self-esteem. Once they’ve learned these concepts, I hope they carry over into the home and school as well.
Director of Special Events: June 2009
I love working with and around children. During high school and college I spent a lot of time working with children of all ages. I volunteered with schools, day cares, camps, and after school programs. I also owned my own private swimming lesson business where I taught 3-6 yr olds.
Some of the things I enjoy outside of Flying High are: Family, Iowa Hawkeyes, Bruce Springsteen, sports, fitness, our family farm in Galena, water-skiing, grilling, and crafts. Also, my mom has a few recipes I could eat every day for the rest of my life and they are: cheesecake, chicken divon, shrimp dip, corned beef and cabbage, slush drink, and Sicilian pizza!
What I want our children to learn here:
I want all children to learn their manners and how to respect others as they want to be respected. I want every child to know they are a star and they can do anything they set their mind to
Office Manager: April 2007
Throughout my life I have taken dance classes from age 5-18 in tap, ballet, jazz, modern, and pom. I have been a nanny and have babysat since the age of 14. I have coached cheerleading and dance squads.
I enjoy all outdoor activities, dancing, and spending time with my family and friends.
My goal is to have every child that walks through Flying High’s doors to attain a high level of self confidence and determination, and leave with a smile on their faces everyday.
I am a licensed Esthetician (skin care specialist) and love to country line dance ☺.
I was a Level 10/Elite gymnast, until I moved on to Track when I was 15, have been coaching ever since! Prior to moving to Chicago in 2007, was coaching Levels 4-10 at Style Gymnastics in MD. Have enjoyed coaching kids of all ranges from pre-school, cheerleaders, Rec and Girls competitive Team. Gymnastics has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember and I can’t imagine doing anything else.
I love to snowboard, attend sporting events (favorite is baseball), travel…I’m a bit of an adventure-seeker and love trying anything new! A few of my adventures include bungee jumping, cliff diving in Mexico and sky diving!
I strive for my gymnasts to learn self confidence, self motivation, inner strength and most importantly how good it feels to overcome struggles (inside AND outside of the gym) which ultimately help them arrive at the goals they have set for themselves.
I’m an expert baton twirler!
Galaxy's Recreational and Competitive Cheer and Dance Director: May 2008
I started dancing and cheering when I was in the third grade. Even though my father wanted me to play basketball and tennis… Mom won and I become a studio trained dancer. I graduated from the University of Arkansas where I was a member of the Pom/Dance Team. I moved to Chicago in 2006 to become a Marketing Coordinator fir EBONY Magazine. That's when I attended a tryout for the Chicago Luvabulls. I made the team and danced for 3 seasons loving every minute of it!
I am currently the Varsity Poms coach at Lyons Township High School in Lagrange and I dance every summer for Endure Productions, Co.
I want my children to learn that behind every great dancer, gymnast, cheerleader, etc., there is a very humble, hardworking and passionate person. Also, I want them to love what they do and NEVER give up because it gets too hard.
If my mother wasn't nicknamed "boss lady", I would have trained to be a Nascar driver! (Shh... don't tell her!)
Gymnast for 7 years[level 8], Cheerleader for 7 years. Coached tots and beginner gymnastics at my old gym, also coached a junior high level all-star cheerleading team.
I enjoy reading, going out with friends, playing with my dog, and good food.
I would like the children I coach to learn determination and a good work ethic. These things will help them ucceed in both gymnastics as well as in life.
I attended the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana, and was an active member of Delta Zeta Sorority.
Competitive and Recreational Gymnastics Coach, Gymnastics Floor Routine Choreographer: April 2002
I have ten years of experience in coaching all levels of gymnastics. For the last eight years, I’ve been working as a choreographer as well. I’ve even brought gymnasts to Nationals in Serbia and America! My passion for gymnastics goes back as far as I can remember. I was on the Serbian National team, and I was a national champion in 1992, 1993, and 1996! From gymnastics to dancing to swimming to basketball, I love all sports.
I love to spend time with my family in Serbia. I am married and I have a gorgeous son named Milos. There was a time when I used to work on television as a reporter!
I want my gymnasts to learn that it is not important how many times you fall, but how many times you stand up.
Martial Arts Instructor: June 2009
My experience with children comes from all the babysitting I’ve done. I’ve been happy to spend time with the children I watch, and now with the students here at Flying High! In my free time, I love to get in a good run or see a great concert. Those who know me would tell you that I love to cook (and eat of course!).
I want the Flying High students to know that becoming a black belt takes effort in and out of the classroom. If something is not possible today, try again tomorrow!
Gymnastics Coach: January 2010
I have 32 years experience in coaching all levels of gymnastics. I am a former gymnast myself, and I like to stay active. I run outdoors, I swim, and I bike. In my spare time, I like to make songs or catch a concert. I pray for my beloved ones, friends, and people that have problems. I’m a volunteer at my church as a reader on Sundays and also for the SWOP organization. You could say that I just enjoy socializing with others in any setting.
I want the gymnasts here to build a good self-esteem. They need to have determination and think that everything they are doing is for a reason. I hope they realize that a good attitude will make them a better human being and a bad attitude will only cause damage.
Events, Party Planet and Cosmic Café Staff: September 2009
I have been an uncle since I was three years old, so I’ve had a huge role in raising my nephews and nieces. Before coming to Flying High, I worked at a Montessori preschool for a year, and I always enjoyed interacting with the children. I have been known as a “musical theatre guy”, who also plays guitar, bass, and all sorts of percussion. I sing a lot. My band actually has a CD on Itunes. We’re called Universal Drift, if anyone is interested.
You’d be pretty surprised to know that I’ve had brain surgery before. I have a ventricular shunt, which is a tube that regulates the fluid in the right ventricle in my head. I had something called hydrocephalus, which was the cause of the fluid build up. I’m doing much better now!
I want the children to learn respect and perseverance, as well as the fact that hard work can be fun. I try to exemplify this to the kids who come to our open gym and birthday parties.
Gymnastics Instructor: November 2008
My background with children comes from babysitting lots of family friends’ kids. I’m currently a gymnast here, but outside of Flying High I am a part of LT Cheerleading and Track. I also like reading and hanging out with my best friends in downtown LaGrange.
Some things that I will teach my children are the importance of life skills, like determination, perseverance, and confidence.
Competitive Gymnastics Team Coach: August 2009
I’m currently a gymnast here at Flying High, and I coach Level 4 and 5. When I’m not at the gym, I’m playing my guitar. I’ve been playing for five years now! I work hard to keep up with my academics and athletics too. At my old school, I was president of National Junior Honor Society and a two-time P.E. record holder.
I want the gymnasts here to learn team work, respect (with each other and themselves), and discipline. These qualities will take them far!
Gymnastics Coach, Party Planet and Events Staff: October 2008
I’ve been teaching at Flying High for the past two years! It’s great that I get to teach so many kids here, from babies to team. I’ve got two awesome nephews, one who is mildly autistic, and I enjoy spending time with them. My free time is spent running, reading, and hanging out with my friends to catch a movie. I’m currently studying to become a nurse, and I volunteer at a hospital. I really love animals too!
I want my students to always remember that no matter what, every child is a star (our FH motto)! A great attitude means everything and I really believe that as long as you keep trying, you will succeed.
Cosmic Café Staff: January 2010
I’ve been around Flying High for a while, taking classes here when I was younger. I’m around kids a lot too because I’m a babysitter, and I have a large family full of young cousins! When I’m not hanging with all the kids, I’m out with my friends or I’m running. I really like running long distances, so I’m on the cross country team.
I work in the café here at FH, so I try to teach the children the importance of saying please and thank you. When kids come up with lots of money and have no idea what to give me, I help them count out the right amount.
Cosmic Café Staff: August 2009
I started taking gymnastics at Flying High when I was 4 and I’ve been coming here ever since! Outside of the gym, I like hanging out with friends and spending time with my family. In the summer, I love to lounge around the pool at my house. I really love animals, especially dogs, and I am considering being a veterinarian.
I want the kids who come to Flying High to have fun and feel comfortable here. It’s important to me that everyone feels welcome.
Events and Party Planet Staff: March 2010
I played sports all my life; softball, basketball, volleyball, gymnastics, and cheerleading. I was in the athletic training program while attending NIU. I coached both of my daughters when they played t-ball. I often help out with the Girl Scout Troops that my daughters are in.
I love spending time with my children. We love outdoor activities as well as games at the kitchen table. We also play group Wii games. We enjoy bike riding and hiking through the woods. I enjoy taking pictures and I am on the yearbook staff at our school. I want my children to learn teamwork. We run our home like being on a team. We work together for common goals. I want them to learn about teamwork outside of the home as well. Compassion for others – being supportive of each other – helping others achieve their goals and always reinforcing “The Golden Rule”
I love animals!! I had my own pet sitting business for 10 years and still enjoying taking care of pets for people while they are away. Sometimes we foster pets at our house while they are waiting to be adopted.
Stellar Martial Arts Instructor: November 2007
I have been in Martial Arts since I was 12 and at 13 I began to help my father teach classes. I started with helping younger belts learn their kicks and have since advanced to teaching higher belt classes. Other than Martial Art skills I want all my students to be able to defend themselves under any circumstances and along the way I enforce the proper characteristics of how to be a good person.
Other than Martial Arts I am in a band and like playing shows with my band. I play the guitar but can also play many other instruments. Aside just playing music I also enjoy being able to record my own songs.
Events Staff: November 2008
When I was a level 5 gymnast I helped coached pre-team which gave me teaching/coaching experience. When working with children I try to teach anything that will help them grow up to be good people. One thing I am a stickler about is using manners, when asking or requesting to do anything. I am still an active gymnast and really enjoy spending time in the gym, beside that I like to hang out with my friends. I started gymnastics at Flying High when I was 4 years old and have watched the gym progress into the amazing gym it is today.
Gymnastics Instructor; Dance Instructor: August 2009
I received my degree in Elementary Education from Eastern Illinois. I taught 5th grade for 2 years. Not only have I have been teaching dance for 4 years but have 12+ years in ballet, jazz, pom, lyrical, pointe, and hip hop.
Outside of Flying High I enjoy scrap booking, going to concerts & shopping. Also cheering for the Chicago White Sox & the Chicago Bears!
I would like my students to learn what it is to have great self-confidence and to have and show passion in things they do, like I passion I have for dance. I also want them to develop great friendships with others as well as learning how to work together with others to achieve positive things.
An interesting fact about me is I went to High School in the Philippine Islands and traveled to other south East Asian countries to dance. I also lived in Las Vegas for 2 years Teaching elementary school.
Infinity & Beyond: December 2008
I have been working with kids for about 6-7 years. I started as a teacher’s aide and currently am in college working towards a degree in Early Childhood Education. I hope one day to be an Early Childhood Special Education Teacher.
Outside Flying High I like hanging out with friends, watching movies & reading books, Action, Romance, Comedy, Suspense, pretty much all types. My best friend & I have been friends for 20 years are 16 days apart & like 12 blocks from each other.
One thing I think is important for kids to learn is to be kind and considerate of others.
Infinity & Beyond: January 2009
I have been around dance and gymnastics for quite a few years. My daughter my daughter did gymnastics from age 5 up through college. My son did 2 years of boy’s gymnastics in high school. I have had a retail back round from working in the girls department at Nordstrom.
I enjoy trying new recipes, baking, antiques, my family car rides and gardening. I love scrap booking and hand quilting. I enjoy crafting things that can be enjoyed by or past on to others.
I have a 1971 corvette. Currently it is not working but someday day, it will be running again. I have had it since 1982.
Maintenance Staff: April 2009
Before coming to Flying High I worked at Downers Grove South High School. I worked in maintenance and helped with recycling. I’m a part of the “Going Green” project.
Outside of Flying High I enjoy watching baseball on TV. I also like basketball, swimming golf and doing puzzles.
I have a good sense of humor and I like to have fun. I especially like taking care of my 2 dogs, Wrigley and Stella.
Boys Gymnastic Coach/Instructor: January 2009
My parents owned a gym in Florida which I spent A LOT of time at. I was a scholarship student at U.I.C from 1996-2000 along with Justin Joyce. I have been an assistant coach at U.I.C, coaching the Men’s Gymnastics Team, 3 time NCAA National Qualifiers.
I want my kids to learn independence and self reliance. Confidence is important in every aspect of life, in and out of sports.
I enjoy spending time with my family in Florida, where my parents live. Other than gymnastics I like water skiing and snow boarding. I’m a sox fan and try to make it to any game I can. Most of all I love to travel. My oldest sister live in South Africa, I have traveled there 6 times. One particular trip lasted 3 months long. I have been to 8 countries in Africa……more to come!!!!!
I have been a gymnast at Flying High for almost 8 years. Although I do not coach at Flying High (I work birthday parties and at the front desk instead), I have coached gymnastics at Lyons Township High School for the past two years.
Besides gymnastics, I love to play tennis. I also like to spend my free time making mixes and movies on the computer.
I think it is important for all children at Flying High to learn to believe in themselves. Self-confidence is not only an important quality to have in the gym, but also in life outside of the gym. You can achieve anything you put your mind to!!
Something interesting that not too many people know about me is that I cannot say –ing words such as ring, king, and singer correctly… I try to avoid saying these words as much as possible!! :)
Twinkling Tots and Rising Star Instructor and Shooting Stars Competitive Team Coach: March 2007
I have been doing gymnastics at Flying High for almost 11 years.
Outside of gymnastics, I enjoy hanging out with friends, watching movies, and going out to eat.
I want my children to learn that when they work hard and have fun they can achieve anything they want to.
I laugh during scary movies to make them not so scary for me.
Flying High Mascot
Harper has very little experience with coaching children because, well, she’s a dog. If she was a coach though, she would probably want her children to learn that you don’t always have to take life so seriously. Have fun with whatever you do.
Harper’s favorite activities outside of the gym include: chasing rabbits, playing catch, and going on walks. She also enjoys spending time with her Aunt Chris and her Grandma!
Background: I worked at FH from 02’-04’. I started teaching beginning levels and worked my way up to being a coach of all levels (including competitive). I also do a lot of the maintenance around the building.
Activities I enjoy outside of Flying High: I like to stay busy playing all kinds of sports. I play softball (12” & 16”), baseball, basketball and volleyball.
What I want my students to learn: Teamwork! Responsibility! How to get along with others. Setting goals and having dreams and NEVER giving up on those is also pretty important. Set the bar high and see what you’re made of!
Something interesting about me: I have worked in many trades: Electricians Union, Carpenter, Concrete Work, Roofing and plumbing.
I love investing in real estate. By the time I was 22 I already owned two properties.
I also have a Saint Bernard who is 175 lbs. He’s huge!
Twinkling Tot and Rising Star Recreational instructor. UNIVERSEity of Dance and Cheer Galaxy Instructor: September 2006
I have a BA in Musical Theatre from Columbia College Chicago where I performed in various dance and theatre productions. I was a cheer coach at St. Ferdinand School in Chicago for 3 years and a cheer instructor at the Park District of Oak Park. I am currently the Head Coach of the Varsity Dance Team at Lane Tech High School in Chicago.
I also enjoy bike riding, reading books, swimming, watching a good movie, traveling to new places, and just relaxing and enjoying the day with my family and friends.
Respect for self and others, the idea that hard work and dedication are important to the success of their chosen discipline, the importance of teamwork, and the ability to feel proud of all the things they have accomplished, no matter how small.
I love animals, especially dogs and horses. Because of this love I will be going back to school in the Fall of 2008 to study Veterinary Technology. I hope to work in an animal shelter one day.
Twinkling Tots, Rising Star Recreational, and Special Stars Instructor: Sept 2006
I have 9 siblings.
I enjoy playing volleyball and softball.
I would like the kids I teach to learn how to have fun while challenging themselves. I really enjoy learning Human Anatomy and dissecting things (as gross as that is!)
Maintenance Manager: September 2007
Background: Even though I have only been working here since 07’ I have been a part of the Flying High family for over ten years. My daughter, Danielle, (also an employee of Flying High during school breaks), was a gymnast here back when the gym was in Brookfield!
I am married with two children, so I know a thing or two about kids!
Activities I enjoy outside of Flying High: I love playing softball, fishing, boating and hunting!
What I love about Flying High: When I am working I love to hear the bell ringing. It means that a child is working hard and enjoying their time here at Flying High.
Background: Front Office, Party Planet/Birthday parties. Special Events/PFN, Lock-ins, I also have two children. I am very active in all of their sports! Both of my children take classes here (and my daughter is on the competitive team!).
I enjoy sewing, crafting and playing volleyball. I really enjoy being with my family.
I would like the children that walk through our doors to leave having learned not only a new skill but more about themselves. Children don’t always know what they are capable of accomplishing. We must help bring it out in them. Hard work pays off. Sometimes it takes longer than others. As long as they keep trying and do their best they will NEVER fail.
How’s this for trivia – I am the youngest of 52 grandchildren. AND I spoke Spanish before I could speak a word of English yet I am Italian/American Indian/Czech.
Assistant Office Manager: August 2010
I've been working with kids my whole life. When I was younger, I worked at Valley Forge supervising girls at day camp. I have been a babysitter, most notable for my two wonderful nieces. Now, I have a 5 year old daughter who loves coming to work with me! Most of my free time is filled up by spending time with her and with my husband. A perfect day for me would consist of a great concert, a good book, and swimming. People would be interested to know that before I had my daughter, I used to do outdoor electrical work!
It is important to me that every child feels at home here at Flying High. I hope they leave with a feeling of accomplishment after every class!
I have been doing gymnastics for 13 years! I started out at 3 years old, and now I get the chance to teach 3 year olds! I love getting the opportunity to work with little kids, and I can use my personal gymnastics experience towards teaching! I love dance, and I actually coached dance before. I used to play soccer and lacrosse too. Aside from sports, I enjoy doing service projects and playing the piano. People would be surprised to know that I was born in England, and I lived there for a year and a half!
I hope my gymnasts learn how to work well with others and to be happy for other people. I want them to have a good work ethic and be determined to learn new skills
Gymnastics Instructor: January 2011
I started working at Flying High when I was 16 years old. I worked here from 2001 to 2005, teaching tots and beginner classes. When I left in 2005, it was to pursue my passion for interior design. I decided to come back to Flying High after all these years because it is a great place to be. I truly enjoy teaching the kids here and though I only did gymnastics recreationally, I am amazed by the tricks the girls and boys can do! If I ever went back to school, I might decide to be an art teacher. Then I would combine my passion for art with my love for teaching! I enjoy spending time with my family and friends here in Chicago and all throughout the US. I am the second oldest of 20 grand kids, so I have been around kids my whole life! I have a BFA in interior design from Harrington College of Design. I work full time designing high end millwork (kitchen and bath cabinetry, built-in furniture, free standing furniture, and basically anything out of wood for your home). I also enjoy helping friends remodel and give my professional input on their properties!
I want my children here to learn how to enjoy what they are doing, take pride in their work, and learn the strong values of team work! I think enjoying what you do makes life more fun!
I have a degree in Early Childhood Education. I have worked as a preschool teacher and a Kindergarten teacher as well as have been a nanny for two families.
Outside of gymnastics, I enjoy time with my family and watching my children learn new things every day. Hanging out with friends is also very enjoyable.
I want the children I work with to learn to be the best at what you can. New experiences will be at your hands always but doing what you believe is the best for you is what matters most.
An interesting fact about myself is that I have two sets of twins!!! Jenna and Brianne are 8 years old and Jacob and Danielle are almost 3 years old.
I've coached girls lacrosse for the past couple of years. I also used to babysit for different families around my community.
Outside of gymnastics, I love to play lacrosse. It's a great sport that many people don't understand or haven't heard of. I enjoy taking my dog Rilee on runs throughout La Grange. I love shopping, although I mainly just browse and save my money. My friends mean the world to me so any chance to hang out with them is taken.
I would like the children I work with at Flying High to learn how to treat others with respect. Another thing would be to be a team player and learn to cooperate with everyone they encounter.
Something interesting about me is that I love to dance. I dance in the shower, the car, the middle of stores, you name it. Whenever I hear music I can't help but start to bob my head or sway from side to side. I know I look crazy, but I love it.
I've been babysitting since I was 10 years old, currently with the Deck family since Tyler and Emerlyn came home and my minor is Child Advocacy.
Outside of gymnastics I enjoy doing anything outside such as going to concerts/festivals and meeting new people.
The main thing I want the children I coach to learn is to get better and have fun. I also want them to learn basic social skills. For example, waiting your turn, saying please and thank you, etc.
Something interesting about myself is I can play the viola and the guitar. Also, I was born in Idaho, grew up in Buffalo Grove, Il, and now live in Chicago in the Logan Square neighborhood. I graduated from NEIU in 2011 with a degree in Psychology.
I was a competitive gymnast until I was 14 and then switched to HS gymnastics (I was a late starter) After HS, I worked as a rec coach for a couple years in Columbus Ohio, then became team coach at Cincinnati Gymnastics Academy (level 4 and 5). In addition to coaching gymnastics I have a passion for teaching kids with special needs, primarily autism. I taught preschool at the Cincinnati Center for Autism, worked at Elim Christian Academy in Palos Heights, implemented at home behavior programs, led gross motor workshops and even taught dance at Cincinnati's School for the Deaf. I have always loved working with kids one way or another! I studied Speech Therapy at Ohio State University and am a huge Buckeye fan :) . I have a daughter who currently competes cheer and dance for Galaxy as well!! Flying High has become a HUGE part of our lives and we love it! I've always had a passion for the sport of gymnastics and made it part of my life one way or another.
Outside of gymnastics, I am an avid runner and have completed everything from 5K's to marathons! I spend my free time playing with my daughter, traveling (not always very far), cooking and dancing...yes, my daughter and I love dancing!
I really want the children I coach to learn discipline in addition to teamwork, hard work and confidence.
Something interesting about me... I am fluent in sign language and I am a certified scuba diver and sky diver!!!
Before working at Flying High, I babysat kids of all ages and I continue to do so! When I was 15, I umpired Lagrange Little League and girls softball. In the summer of 2011, I taught/coached the girls gymnastic summer camp. I've always been around children! I have 2 younger brothers and a sister and I always babysat and helped my mom take care of them!
Outside of gymnastics, I enjoy playing fastpitch softball; the game interests me and I love playing on my travel team! I also love camping. My family owns a campsite at a campground and just about each weekend during the summer, my family is there canoeing and kayaking!
As a teacher at Flying High, I want my children to learn manners and the true fundamentals of making friends. Manners will keep them on everyone's positive side and always being polite will take each child a long way. Making friends is important, too because no matter where they are, talking and sharing properly will allow them to prosper with friends!
Something interesting about me is that I started playing t-ball at the age of 4 and as soon as I moved to the next level, I played with the boys! I played with them from ages 6-13 and at 13 I finally switched to girls fastpitch. I was always acknowledged as one of the boys because I played just as good and hard as them.
I have a degree in Elementary Education, with 2 middle school endorsements (Language Arts and Social Studies). I taught Pre-K for 2 years while I was in college, and I taught Junior High for 4 years after I received my degree in 2000. I left to be a stay at home mom once my first daughter, Dana, was born in November, 2005.
Outside of gymnastics I enjoy reading, shopping, hanging out with my daughters, going to the movies, and organizing things.
I would like the children I work with at events/birthday parties to enjoy all that Flying High has to offer! I would like for the positive mission of FH to come across to the children attending events, hopefully enough that they can't wait to return!
Some interesting facts about include that I took a certification course in Grant Writing. I worked in a Greek Restaurant for 13 years. When my girls are in Junior High, I would love to get my endorsement in Instructional Media and become a school librarian!
July, 6 2011
I recently moved here from Utah to pursue graduate studies in technical communications at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
I have nearly two decades of gymnastics experience. I have had extensive experience in all aspects of the sport as a gymnast, coach, and judge. I achieved a ranking of level 10 in Northern California and competed as a Level 9 and 10, was USAG J.O Regional Qualifier and a YMCA National floor finalist. I retired as an athlete and began coaching competitive gymnastics for team levels 4-9 and have a wide range of experience in choreographing optional level floor routines. I have also instructed preschool and recreational gymnastics.
As a member of the National Association of Women's Gymnastics Judges, I have judeges levels 5/6 and 7/8 for about 4 years. I also hold a Master of Arts Degree in Sports Management from the University of San Francisco and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English from Spelman.
Outside of gymnastics I enjoy reading, writing, and dancing. I also enjoy going to different museums and ballets (and other performances).
My coaching philosophy focuses on facilitating positive environments where students can increase their self confidence, self discipline, mental training, and develop/perfect specialized gymnastics skills.
Something interesting about me is that I was an athlete in other sports including competitive horse vaulting, cheerleading, and basketball.
I have been a competitive cheerleader for 7 years now, but I've been tumbling for 10 years. I coached a youth competitive cheerleading team, grades 3-8, for 3 years. I went to The Cheerleading Worlds this past year and I absolutely loved it!
Outside of gymnastics I enjoy spending time with my friends and family.
I would like my children to learn to challenge themselves while still having fun doing something that they enjoy doing.
Something interesting about me is that I have broken my arm 11 times in the past 9 years.
I have always been the baby of my family. Because of that I have many nephews and nieces that I took care of as I grew up. Weird thought being an uncle at age 5. I love working with kids. I have worked with kids before at LT's Learn to swim program and it was a blast.
On my spare time I enjoy playing on my guitar and fine tuning my skills on the violin. I like playing basketball and I am always up for a game of golf. I am very passionate about photography and go on walks just to take pictures of things I find interesting. If I am not doing any of these things then I spend my great times and laughs with my friends.
I want the children to learn respect and that hard work pays off. Learning these qualities will take them to wherever they would want to go in life!
I speak two languages fluently, English and Spanish, and can hold some conversations in French. I also am a certified scuba diver. I have a coin and paper money collection. My oldest coin is a nickel from 1937. My oldest paper bill is a two dollar bill from 1928.
I started with ballet when I was about three. I then did artistic gymnastics for four years and rhythmic gymnastics for three years. When I was eleven I found out about Flying High and have been on their competitive dance team ever since.
Other activities I enjoy are baking and spending time with friends and family.
I want my children to learn that they can do anything they set their minds to and to never give up on their dreams.
When I did rhythmic gymnastics I qualified for nationals and got eighth out of 90 participants.
I have been involved with cheerleading for nine years, cheering on various co-ed teams for 8 of those years. Starting in 2007, I was asked to help coach gymnastics for my old college coach. From there spotting high schoolers turned into spotting middle schoolers and eventually putting on tumbling clinics. All of this culminated in 2011 when I started my own tumbling business and coached two different schools. I also spent five years as a co-ed cheerleader at Ferris State University. With that experience I started doing stunt clinics for friends and coaches in the state of Michigan.
I have a lot of things I enjoy outside of gymnastics/cheer. Some of the top activities include sports, particularly golf, football, wrestling, baseball and snowboarding. I love participating in all of these as much as I like watching them. My other favorite activity I like is being a nerd. Where I come from that is a good thing. I am a chemist in general, especially murder mysteries and science fiction. But my favorite thing of all is spending time with my family. They are the most important thing in the world to me.
There are several things I want kids to learn when I coach them, and the most important thing is that one does not just learn how to be a good athlete but rather a good person. Athletics taught me so much more than just how to play a sport. I learned how to be a good teammate, how to compromise, and do what is best for everyone, not just myself. I also learned how to be confident but not arrogant, humble, and to never give up. These are just a few things I learned through my years as an athlete and I hope, nothing more, than to pass these on to my pupils.
I was born with an extra bone in each foot which has made walking and running in athletics very, very difficult at times. But that is what taught me how not to quit ever. I did whatever necessary to make sure I was at all of my practices, giving 100% all the time. Also I love watching the older Disney animated films like Hercules, Atlantis, and Aladdin.
I have worked with kids since I started babysitting at 10 years old. I taught gymnastics to visually impaired youths at a sports camp while I was in college. I have been an Occupational Therapist for 17 years.
I love spending time with my family. I have two kids, a girl and a boy, who take classes here at Flying High. We love watching movies, going on bike rides, and spending time with our neighbors and friends.
I want my students to learn self-confidence. No matter where their skill level is, there will always be something they can succeed at. This is also a skill that carries over into everyday life.
My husband and I grew up together in Michigan. We moved to Chicago in 1997 but still travel back about once a month to visit family. I also love to cook and am very interested in photography.
I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts at Millikin University in Musical Theatre with a double major in History. I am currently attending Governors State University to obtain my teaching certification in Elementary Education with a specialization in mathematics. I serve as an acting coach at Evergreen Park High School for school musicals, as well as individual lessons for kids and other professional children's theatre groups in the Chicagoland area.
I am a huge sports fan, especially Chicago sports. I am a Chicago Bears and Bulls fan; and I am still anxiously waiting for my Chicago Cubs to win the World Series. I really enjoy cooking as well. I like finding recipes that are not only healthy but equally as delicious. I also enjoy going on cruises and visiting Tropical islands. I have been on cruises to Hawaii, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, and Puerto Rico.
I want my students to be the best they can possibly be. I have high expectations for my students but only because I know they can reach limits they never thought existed. My students can be assured that I will have their best interests in mind and will push them individually based on their talents and goals. Also, I want my students to know that they are in a safe learning environment in which they can feel free to fail and not feel as though they are being unfairly judged. From this, my students will know that learning is a continual process, not just means to an end; and they will look to partake in their own learning and reach their maximum potential.
In high school, I played football and baseball, while also participating in school plays, musicals, choir, and band performances. There were many days after school that I would put down my helmet and run from the football field to the school auditorium for rehearsal and pick up a script.
Cosmic Café Staff: August 2012
I have been a teacher's aide for religious education classes at St. Cletus for 3 years and babysitting for neighbors and family when needed.
When I'm not working or in school I enjoy playing Lacrosse and cooking!
I'd like the children to learn how to be independent and how to forgive easily.
Something interesting about me is that as a child I fossil-hunted as a hobby and we displayed the artifacts we found all over our house.
I am a recent graduate of Lewis University and love working with kids! I tutored in my first year of college and have babysat many families. I am always surrounded by kids and I feel they bring so much joy to the world.
Some activities I enjoy outside of gymnastics include; Family, friends, fitness, running, and spending time at my cottage in Wisconsin!
I want the children to learn that self-confidence is very important and no one can ever bring you down unless you let them. I want the kids to know that they are beautiful and bring joy to the world.
I have a house in Wisconsin on a lake and I love fishing with my family!
I did gymnastics competitively through high school and after graduation went on to train at Cirque de Soleil in San Francisco. I have been coaching rec gymnastics for 15 years and specialize in the instruction of babies, tots and preschool age children.
I enjoy playing tennis and have played on a team for the past few years. I love to be fit and so I dedicate a lot of my time to exercise. I am a lover of all animals, so I spend as much free time as I can with furry creatures.
I want my children to learn that gymnastics can be a bridge to improving in all other areas of life. It teaches discipline and builds strength and character that provide a solid foundation from which each child can grow. And of course… have fun!
I was a gymnast at Flying High from age 5 to 18 (13 years) before continuing my gymnastics career at the University of Illinois – Chicago. I have been coaching gymnastics and tumbling since I was 13 years old. I absolutely love working with children of all ages and abilities. Watching my students grow not only as an athlete but also as a person is my favorite part.
Outside of gymnastics I love to read books, watch episodes of House or Grey's Anatomy, go running/biking or on a walk. I also was an LT cheerleader all 4 years of high school.
I want my children to learn how to set goals and to work hard for what it is they would like to achieve, cope with failure, be excited but also modest about their achievements, be polite to elders as well as their peers, to work as a team, and to have fun while working hard.
I have an ever-growing love/passion for animals and I plan to adopt at least one or two dogs in the near future. Also, I hope to be able to be a foster home for animals. Animal Cops is a favorite TV show of mine, but I could never become one as I would cry too often for the animals. I also love watching House and Grey's Anatomy for both the background drama and the medical aspect too, however could never be a doctor as I could never perform a surgery.
I have been coaching for six years. I also did gymnastics for 15 years and made it to Level 8 and then did high school gymnastics.
Activities I enjoy outside of gymnastics include hanging out with friends and family.
I want my students to learn to never give up. We don't always expect perfection but we do want you to give it your all.
I have a very large giraffe collection. Some even from other countries.
I have been coaching for six years. I also did gymnastics for 15 years and made it to Level 8 and then did high school gymnastics.
I have 3 of my own children and being the youngest of 7 children and having 23 nieces and nephews, I've been around kids almost my whole life. I've coached my daughter's t-ball team and I was the secretary of the parent club at my children's school for the past five years, ran the Scholastic Book Fairs and was the Box Tops Coordinator.
Outside of the gym, I play volleyball, like to bike ride and like hanging out with my children at the zoo or swimming in the pool.
I want my children to learn to be respectful of each other, that you can have fun and still work hard and to know that they can reach their goals if they never give up.
For a female, I'm a huge sports nut. I love watching baseball, hockey, football and tennis (even more than my husband).
Since we love going to the zoo, we thought we would start one at our house. We have a dog, guinea pigs, a hamster and fish.
I have been an early childhood teacher for 20+ years. My gymnastics background is as a Flying High parent. My 3 children have taken classes at FH; both of my daughters made it to Team—Morgan, a Level 9 and now on the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater team, and Dana, currently a Level 9/10.
I love my day job—teaching early childhood special education in Western Springs. I am a running addict and like to rollerblade, play tennis and read.
To enjoy being physically active and gaining skills and strength. Also, to be part of group, able to take turns, follow directions and have fun.
I have lived in Illinois all my life, but hate winter. I LOVE watching the sun set into the water, especially in Michigan!
I have always had a passion to help kids. I am constantly with kids too. I volunteer tutoring in a program to help kids with special needs have a normal high school experience and I am always babysitting when I'm not teaching at Flying High.
I am a pole vaulter for the LTHS track team and played badminton for LT. I love to travel; my favorite place is Aruba. And I'm a shopoholic. I am always wandering through Oakbrook mall in my spare time looking for deals.
I would like my students to learn that being kind, discipline, hard work and never giving up are the keys to not only gymnastics but to having a successful life. No matter how difficult something may seem, never, ever give up!
When I'm older I'd like to be an interior designer. Like my parents, restoring historical homes interests me. Hopefully when I'm older I can carry on their legacy and continue to rehabilitate homes in the Chicago land area.
I've babysat since I was in 6th grade and love kinds. I also did gymnastics for 9 years at Flying High. Activities I enjoy outside of gymnastics are; cheerleading and soccer.
I want my kids to listen and pay attention. Also that with hard work, success will come. As long as you persevere, improvement is inevitable.
Something interesting about myself would be that I was born in England and lived there for 2 years.
I began coaching at the age of 16. I have coached and directed an all star program. I have also coached Varsity Cheerleading.
Some things I enjoy outside of cheerleading are: Shopping! Trying new restaurants, going to see movies and exploring Chicago since I just moved here!
I hope that my children learn perseverance, the importance of teamwork, and sportsmanship. The importance of goal setting and that hard work will ALWAYS pay off!
Something interesting about me is that I am a licensed cosmetologist. I also LOVE cats!
I have been working with children for 5 years. Outside of teaching gymnastics, I enjoy watching movies, reading, listening to music, enjoying the outdoors, and watching any movie that has Robert Downey Jr. or Patrick Swayze as the star.
I would like the children that I work with to learn patience and how to believe in themselves. A fun fact about me is that I have a twin sister and that I played volleyball and softball in high school!
Before coming to Flying High I worked as a babysitter. I enjoy reading, working out, spending time outdoors and hanging out with friends. I would like the children that I teach to learn that everyone one learns at a different pace and not to get discouraged! An interesting fact about me is that I can play four different musical instruments!
My experience working with children has been widespread over the past few years. I have babysat, attend a youth group once a week and I also tutor children twice a week in a program called Leadershop. Outside of working with kids, I enjoy hanging out with friends and family. I am also involved in Color Guard at my high school.
I want to teach children manners and cooperation, while in class. I want them to learn the importance of sharing and active listening. A fascinating fact about me is that I was born on a leap year!
Before coming to Flying High I attended Sokol Tabor. I enjoy being outside and taking vacations. I also enjoy listening to music.
I want my students to have fun and make friends while attending their classes.
I have been studying French for 6 years and had the incredible opportunity to spend two weeks in France a few years ago.
I have always enjoyed working with children. When I was 13 years old I started a summer fun childcare program with a friend. We made crafts, had snacks, story time and played games with kids from our neighborhood. Everyday after school I assist my mom who nannies. When I am not in school or working, I enjoy reading and spending time with my friends and family.
I want kids to learn that if they work hard and believe in themselves they can do anything they put their minds to!
Something intriguing about me is that I am an animal lover! One summer I helped resuce a 2 week old kitten. His name is Paws and is now happy and healthy!
Before coming to Flying High I was a coach at another gym for 4 years. I was involved in cheer and gymnastics since I was 11 years old. When I am not at the gym coaching or working on my own skills, I enjoy writing, music and drawing.
I want the kids that I coach to learn to be safe and smart while tumbling. I want them to learn to focus properly while executing their skills.
An exciting fact about me is that I have a huge memory capacity and can remember a wide assortment of facts. I can also sing an entire song in French, but I have never been taught to speak French!