Meet our wonderful team!
Soraya Rouchdi, Founder and Director
Soraya Rouchdi is a passionate professional, a certified preschool director and entrepreneur. She experienced the importance of languages, travels and multicultural awareness in her early age. The valuable exposure to bilingual environment and various cultures and countries allowed her to speak four languages fluently. Soraya enjoyed living and studying in France, Italy, North Africa, and the United States. Soraya pursued her college education in Paris and Lille (France), where she earned her Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Lille III University.
Soraya was an active PTA member in the schools where her children attended; she was also an elected board member of Ridgeview Charter School, and a Parent Chair of the science and math text book committee. In addition to her volunteering and home schooling activities, Soraya enjoys spending quality time with her family. She likes cooking international meals, reading, listening to world music, meeting friends and Jazzercise.
Anays Pupo, Administration
Anays Pupo is a native of Havana, Cuba. She obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Communication from the University of Havana and after finishing her studies, she moved to the United States in September 2011. Anays is very passionate about writing children’s stories and some of her previous work includes working as a journalist in a magazine for young adults. She has also worked as a volunteer at various schools to increase literary awareness among children by using her own nursery rhyme books. She also loves working with children, making arts and crafts and singing.
Aline Bédart, French Teacher
Aline was born in the east of France. She earned a Master’s degree in Law. She then worked for 10 years in Paris for several French companies as a corporate lawyer. She had the opportunity to move with her family to Bangalore, India where she taught French and co-founded a charity program for young children. She moved to the United States in 2015. She’s pursuing studies in Child Psychology. She considers bilingualism as a great skill to acquire for her son and for all children in general.
Aline loves traveling , going on long nature walks with her family, practicing yoga and reading. She is very excited to be a part of the Little Da Vinci’s team.
Céline Bell, French Teacher
Céline Bell is a dynamic educator who has worked with children in both France and the United States. She earned her teaching certification in Music Education from the French Ministry of Education “CAPES”. In France, she taught Music Education to middle school students and held the position of choir director for 11 years. She also served as a teacher trainer and was asked to participate in numerous Kindergarten classes where she was able to develop her passion for project-based and interdisciplinary teaching approaches.
Céline moved to Atlanta from Paris, France in 2007 with her Franco-American family, joining the LDVIS team in 2010. Since then, she has been focusing on implementing fun and innovative teaching methods for bilingual learners (from Pre-K to second grade). She believes in creating meaningful connections between different languages and keeping her students engaged at all times. Celine aims to engage her students in a wide but interconnected diversity of activities ranging from music, arts, role play, new technologies, science projects, creation of books to using the “outdoor classroom”.
Christine Blanchet, French Teacher
Christine was born and raised in the North of France. She worked during 18 years in an environmental company as a chemist engineer. She moved to the United States in 2000. As a parent she volunteered for 2 years at McIntosh High School in Peachtree City (helping ESOL students in chemistry and French. Then she worked as a caregiver at Royal Lerner Center in Peachtree City during 5 years. She is very excited to be part of Little Da Vinci’s team. Christine is motivated to teach in a fun way her passion for sciences to the children.
Emmanuelle Nadaud, French Teacher & French Program Coordinator
Emmanuelle Nadaud was raised in Avignon, France. She completed her higher education at the National Institute of Applied Sciences (INSA) in Toulouse, France where she received a master degree in Chemical Processes Engineering in 1992. She also obtained an additional Master in Computer Sciences in 1993 at l’Ecole Supérieure d’Ingénieurs de Marseille (ESIM). Three years later, while pregnant with her second child she realized her passion for teaching. She went on to receive her teaching certification through the French Ministry of Education (IUFM, l’Institut Universitaire de Formation des Maîtres). Although she has taught grades Pre K through 5th (l’Education Nationale) she has a special fondness for Kindergarten.
Emmanuelle has many hobbies; listening to music, creating art, walking and playing scrabble are just a few. In addition she loves to travel; discovering new ways of life, foods, and ways of thought are the treasures she brings home.
Erika Palacios, Spanish Teacher
Erika Palacios is a graduated Occupational therapist from the University Manuela Beltran, Bogota, Colombia. She is also an educational teacher with many years of experience working with children with and without disabilities in Bogota, and in the United States of America. Erika's specialties is building strength and endurance of specific body parts as well as the entire body and educating parents about their children’s development, and engage them in an active role with their kid’s life.
Famina Laroui, French Teacher
Famina was born and raised in Metz, in the northeast of France. Her parents are from North Africa, so she also speaks an ethnic language, called Berbere. She is very proud of her rich culture, which has been a great help throughout her life. Famina earned a Bachelor’s degree to become an Optician Sales Specialist at Lycée Louis Bertrand, in France. She volunteered in an after-school program for 2 years in France, where she assisted children from elementary school with homework and different school projects. She moved to the United States in 2008 and has been raising her two sons since. She home-schooled her oldest son during the first 3 years of his life. In her free time, Famina loves to travel the world, take long walks in the woods, play soccer with her boys, visit museums, and cook Mediterranean food. She also enjoys reading and watching old French movies.
Johanne Beaudoin, French Teacher
Johanne was born and raised in Québec, Canada. As far as she can remember, she always knew she wanted to teach. After earning a technical degree in Early Childhood Education, she decided to move to the United States to learn English and try something new. She landed in Charlottesville Virginia where she first worked as an Au Pair and then taught in an immersion school for over four years. While living in Virginia, she also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in French Literature at Mary Baldwin College. She moved to Atlanta in the summer of 2014, with her husband and their two chubby cats. Johanne is what you might call a “foodie”. She really enjoys cooking, trying new food and looking for all the food-related events in town. She brings this passion to the classroom, as she loves cooking with the children and helping them develop good eating habits. When she is not busy looking for new classroom ideas, Johanne also loves reading, running and exploring the city.
Jovita Pedraza, Spanish Teacher
Jovita Pedraza was born in Mexico and worked as a preschool teacher in Mexico there until she moved to Georgia when she was 18 years old where she obtained a degree in administration. She is the mother of four amazing children who not only make her day brighter but have also given her experience and knowledge on childcare and education. In her free time, Jovita likes to practice sports, create art, write children’s stories and spend time with her family. She is an all around outgoing, fun and joyful person and she is very excited to be a part of the LDVIS team.
Kalani Fraser, English Teacher
Kalani Fraser is an American native. She grew up as a Navy brat, which helped her develop a love for travel and international cultures. She has worked passionately with children throughout her adult life, including teaching music, working as an au pair, and developing a theatre camp. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from Clayton State University, where she studied under internationally produced actors, directors and playwrights.
Kalani is a music enthusiast and spends most of her free time with an instrument in hand. She has practiced guitar for over twelve years and is also a student of keyboard, the Venezuelan cuatro, and percussion, including drumkits and cajón. She is fascinated by the imagination and creativity of young minds and is thrilled to offer her arts experience to foster further growth in these areas and engage her students in and excite them about their own educations.
Maria Lucia Londoño, Spanish Teacher
Maria Lucia Londoño is a visual artist and educator with a diverse cultural background. Her interest in the visual arts began with her drawing experimentation during early childhood, in Los Angeles, California where she was born. She later moved to Cali, Colombia, where she attended a bilingual international school. Maria has always been immersed in both Spanish and English languages. She considers art and bilingualism to be great life skills and is encouraged to share this love for art and languages with young children. She has had diverse experiences in bilingual educational settings, including teaching in Costa Rica at an international school. Maria has recently graduated from Kennesaw State University with an Art Education degree and her goal is not only to teach, but also to inspire young creative minds.
Marie de Salins, French Teacher
Marie was born and raised in Paris. She has always wanted to be a teacher since childhood, but first obtained a bachelor of Law degree at Paris X University as well as a Master’s degree in education specialized in preschool and elementary school at the Center of Pedagogy Education Sainte Geneviève in Paris. After graduation, she began working as a preschool teacher in Paris and later in 2nd and 3rd grades in Sartrouville, France. She moved to the United States in 2012, following her husband here in Atlanta.
Marie loves to develop interdisciplinary projects in class that foster critical thinking and engage the children to explore their surroundings. She believes in the importance of making mistakes in the learning process in order to develop each student’s confidence in his abilities. Marie is committed in the will to create a trusted relationship between the parents and the teacher with the common goal to help the child grow and develop. Overall, she is driven by the social and educational well-being of every student.
Marie Neel, French Teacher & French Art Coordinator
Marie Neel was born and raised in Lille, north of France. She earned her degree in art and an international trading degree from Saint Vincent de Paul in Roubaix (France). In 1992 after her graduation, she decided to explore other cultures and countries. In 1993, she traveled to the United States and remained in Atlanta since then.
Marie worked as a preschool teacher at Cliff Valley School (Reggio Emilia approach) in Atlanta, GA for two years. She loves art, music, traveling, cooking and working on her jewelry line. She also cherishes her quality time with her family and friends. Marie lives in Atlanta with her husband and two daughters Josephine and Louise.
Marta Velez, Spanish Teacher
Marta is a native of Colombia, where she studied Marine Biology. Marta has traveled and worked in different countries throughout her life. After finishing her degree, she moved to Argentina where she lived for one year. Later, she settled down in Italy for almost two years where she pursued a second degree in Social Science. After living in Europe, she had the opportunity to move to California where she lived for three years and studied English at San Jose State University. Marta has worked with children for several years, teaching biology, science, English and Spanish. Some of her hobbies are to travel, especially with her family; diving, swimming, taking long walks and reading in Spanish, Italian and English.
Mathilde PetitPré Harris, French & English Teacher
Mathilde is a native French and English speaker who, despite being born in France, considers herself somewhat of a 3rd culture kid after spending the majority of her childhood and teenage years in different francophone African countries. She attended an international school and received her bilingual diploma in French and English before pursuing Romance Languages at the University of Georgia. Mathilde realized she was passionate about language education during a semester spent teaching English in an elementary school in Budapest. After graduating, she received her CELTA from the University of Cambridge before spending a year in Madrid, Spain, gaining fluency in a 3rd language while continuing to teach English and French classes. She then returned to Atlanta and joined the Little Da Vinci team. Mathilde has enjoyed every moment of her time here and finds particular pleasure in watching her students discover new languages, cultures, and all the capacities they already have within themselves.
Nathalie Anderson, French Teacher
Nathalie Anderson is a native of Vannes, in the region of Brittany in France. She earned her degree in Travel and Tourism from the Institut Rue Monsieur in Paris, France. She then, decided to improve her language skills and arrived in Atlanta in 1986, where she met her husband.
Nathalie left her work in the travel industry after ten years to focus on her passion, education. She became very active in the parent/teachers associations at her daughters’ schools and held positions in the diverse boards. She has been a French teacher and tutor for the last ten years.
Nikia Waithe, English Teacher
Nikia Waithe was born and raised in Long Island, New York. She is passionate about children, education, and the art and science of teaching. Nikia received her teaching certification through New York State, and has ten years of teaching experience, working with both a multicultural and inclusion setting. She holds a dual Master Degree of Science in Education and Special Education for Early Childhood (Birth-Grade 2). She attended Adelphi University, where she earned her Bachelor’s in History. As the mother of two small boys, Nikia leads a life full of exploration and adventure. She has a special love for the performing arts. Fascinated by the use of alternative forms of percussion, she has 14 years experience in teaching tap to both children and young adults.
Valérie Lorentz, French Teacher
Valérie was born in Luxemburg and raised in Belgium. She always wanted to take care of children and during her teenage years, she became a Girl Scout leader. After completing her midwifery studies, she worked as a midwife in Belgium, Mayotte Island and France for 15 years. She has been married for 8 years and has 3 wonderful children (2 girls and 1 little boy). In May 2014, she joined her husband who was relocated to Atlanta by his company. As midwife's licensing is a long process in Georgia, and considering how much she loves to be with children, Valérie discovered a real passion for teaching. She loves traveling and discovering other cultures by cooking, reading, dancing, and listening to music.