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Anna Stearns | Singing 

Has studied piano for 10 years, and learned vocal music with Patrice McGinnis at UC Santa Cruz. Since 1996, she has studied West and Central African percussion, song and dance. She received her teaching credential from SF State in 1993, and her Orff-Schulwerk music teaching certification from Mills in 2001. This is her 24th year teaching in the Mill Valley School District; 5 years as a classroom teacher, and 19 years as the elementary music specialist.


Julia James | Painting, drawing, and handcrafts 

Julia James has over 20 years of experience teaching visual arts in the Bay Area. She earned a BA in Jewelry and Design from Goldsmiths College, London, and a Multiple Subject, Single Subject Art Credential and Masters in Education from Sonoma State University. Her teaching integrates many art techniques and encourages personal creativity and confidence. In this course, students will explore and experiment with a variety of different media and themes.


Maura Whelehan | Dance 

Maura Whelehan is a native of Rochester, New York, where she danced, performed, and taught children as well as adults for Bushmango Drum and Dance for 8 years. She also performed and studied with Akoma Ntoaso, a collective that explored Afro-fusion and modern dance with members of Garth Fagan Dance. While studying movement, she also pursues West African drumming. After moving to the Bay Area 7 years ago, she has been honored to study with the many local West African artists both as a dancer and a drummer. She began dancing with Duniya Dance and Drum Company in 2011, with whom she performs and teaches students of all ages. Maura has been a Teaching Artist for The San Francisco Ballet’s Dances in Schools and Communities program (DISC) since 2013, and has been grateful to work with over 5,000 elementary school students throughout San Francisco. She has collaborated with Luna Dance Institute, and she also teaches weekly classes at the Bay Club San Francisco


Wade Peterson | Drumming  

Is a noted drummer and teacher of hand drumming in the Bay Area for 25 years. He combines a strong grounding in Western music with a deep knowledge of West African musical traditions and has created a methodology that makes the music unusually accessible to western learners, while remaining true to the ancient traditions from which it comes. He holds a degree in music from UC Santa Cruz, teaches throughout the Bay Area, and is an accompanist serving schools through the SF Ballet.



Ernesto Hernandez-Olmos | Multi media

Was educated at the highly respected Autonomous University, "Benito Juarez" in Mexico, and has been active in the community arts in Northern California since 1998. His art has been exhibited at Metropolitan Museum of Art, the de Young,  the Legion of Honor,  the California Academy of Sciences, and the Oakland Museum of California.