Our Team

“By teaching children to think outside the box, our children may just save our world, or equally as important grow up to be the best fathers and mothers, mentors & leaders. In my mind, ours is the most important work.”

Kelli Booth

Founder & Owner 2007
Educational Social Worker Min Ed
Dip Visual Arts, Dip TV & Film
Montessori Experience 17 years

She has gathered around her a team of wonderful Montessori educators who have the same passion and commitment to making a positive difference to children in their preschool years. Kelli was also was instrumental in establishing the Huapai Montessori Primary Unit in 2005 and is very proud that this wonderful classroom continues to thrive. Many of Riverhead Montessori children graduate to the Montessori Primary and as such each year  have a close knit group of  5 year olds  that will  continue their educational journey together.

Kelli worked in education as a social worker for 10 years and has an additional background in broadcast and print media. This has led to a truly creative centre full of exciting tools and opportunities for nurturing, educating and play.

Her aim to ensure every child leaves Riverhead Montessori well prepared for life with a set of skills that allows them to succeed at whatever they choose. This has now been realised thousands of times over and continues to fill her with joy and a genuine love for what she does.

Rebecca Jefferies

Centre Manager

ECE/Montessori Kaiako

 Hi I’m Rebecca the new Centre Manager at RMLC. I have two beautiful children who attend Riverhead Montessori, This is where I fell in love with the centre and the Montessori programme. This has led to me having the opportunity of being the centre manager, I have a background of administration and management, as well as a love of children. I am looking forward to combining these skills and growing my knowledge in a new environment.

Vicki Li

Kaiako Whare Kea
Bachelor of Education ECE
Montessori Speciality

Hi, my name is Vicki
I am from Hong Kong, China. I have been living in Aotearoa New Zealand since 1996.I completed a degree in Bachelor of Early Childhood Education specializing in Montessori from Auckland University of Technology in 2015.​​It was during my third year at AUT University that the Montessori philosophy made a great impact on me. I have always had the passion to support and work alongside adults and children. I believe that the Montessori environment facilitates children to become independent, self-motivated, responsible, and respectful individuals.​Children learn best when they are given opportunities to explore their world. I believe that every child should be accorded respect and dignity as unique individuals.​In my spare time I enjoy playing the piano, baking, reading, traveling, bush walking and spending time with my family.

Genna Lampshire

Kaiako Whare Kea
Bachelor of Education ECE

Kia ora RMLC whanau Ko Genna ahau, e noho ana ahau ke Coatesville My teaching Philosophy
"Take care of our children. Take care of what they hear, take care of what they see, take care of what they feel. For how our children grow, so will be the shape of Aotearoa" Dame Whina Cooper.
This quote has framed my philosophy for working with children.I believe that all children are unique, that they offer something special to give to the world and they should be held in high regard. To be loved, nurtured, listened to and adults highest priority. For they are the future.
I understand the importance of valuing the family as the child's first teacher. The family/whanau and community are a vital component for children's learning. To provide support in relation to learning, development and communication, it is a collaborative relationship.

Amy Zhang

Kaiako Whare Kea
Bachelor of Education
Montessori eduacator in training

Kia ora, my name is Amy, I am from Xi’an, China.
I am a registered teacher with a Graduate Diploma of Teaching. Previously I graduated with a science degree from the University of Otago, but decided once finishing, that I love working with children hence my retraining in ECE. My passion is to help children to be happy and inspire and encourage them as they grow. I value strong and reciprocal relationships with our Tamariki. Children are so precious and should be nurtured. Getting to know their personality, interests and strengths helps me to assist in their development and seeing their potential.

Rachel Campbell

Administrator and float kaiako (former team leader Tui Nest)
Level 5 ECE certificate
Montessori experience 7 years

Kia Ora I'm Rachel. I have always had a passion for working with children and have experience working in a variety  of child-care based roles including after school care, working in a play centre, nannying as well as centre-based care. I was first introduced to Montessori whilst working in a nursery school in the UK and have loved learning more about the philosophy over the years and incorporating it into my practice. Upon returning to NZ in 2016 I started my journey here at RMLC in the Tui Nest classroom and am now exploring a new chapter here in the office working alongside the Management team. In my spare time I enjoy dancing and spending time with friends and family.

Irenne Gamil

Team Facilitator & Kaiako Tui Nest
Post Graduate Degree ECE
Bach Education in Secondary Teaching
Passionate Montessorian

Kia ora! I am Irenne, a qualified and registered teacher from Bohol, Philippines. I earned my undergraduate and postgraduate studies in my home country and started my teaching career four years ago where I have taught tertiary and secondary students. I have a post graduate degree in ECE. When I moved here to New Zealand, I volunteered in early learning centres around Hamilton which sparked my interest in teaching younger age groups. As a mother of two, Yuri Gabrielle (8) and Zeph Gabrielle (3), I see children as innately wise and capable, being able to develop confidence and self-regulation.  Riverhead Montessori, I would like to thank you for providing me with the opportunity to become a part of your child’s education endeavour; supporting them to achieve  their absolute best, in close collaboration with the team, and with you as parents.

Odessa Tablarin

Kaiako Tui Nest
Bachelor of Education ECE 
Certified ESOL
(Montessori Preschool)

Kia Ora! My name is Odessa from the Philippines - a NZ registered and qualified ECE as well as a certified ESOL teacher. Being a part of Riverhead Montessori team has been an honour and a privilege as I have been provided with great opportunities to be a linguistically and culturally responsive early childhood teacher in supporting young learners in New Zealand. I am an advocate of quality early learning and this is very important to me. Since children’s characteristics are unique, their learning styles and preferences should be valued, and learners’ multiple intelligences should also be developed. They can reach their full potential if they are provided with invaluable opportunities and substantial experiences to explore, discover and create something in order to hone their skills and abilities as well as to build their confidence to become valued contributors to society in the future.

Rui Mao

Kaiako Whare Kea/ Tui Nest Float Teacher
Bachelor of Teaching ECE
ECE Registered Teacher
Montessori Teaching Dipolma NAMC

Koutou e hoa ma:
Ko Rui
Mao toku ingoa
No China ahau
No reira, Tena koutou, tena koutou, tena koutou katoa.

Hi,my name is Rui (Ray), I have been working in childcare for 9+ years in New Zealand. I am originally from China, where I was a qualified preschool teacher and had 9 years teaching experience with 2 ½ to 5 year old children.
I have completed a Bachelor of Teaching ECE with NZCA and an International Montessori Teaching Diploma with NAMC. I believe that a happy safe environment is one where children can develop a joy for learning in their early years. This encourages positive behaviour and confidence in their own ability. I believe to learn in a holistic way is important to their growth in all areas of their development. 

Gordia-Anne Hattingh

Montessori Trained ECE 13 years
Relieving Kaiako and Montessori mentor
RMLC 5 years

My name is Gordia.  I am a passionate Montessori teacher who has been involved in Montessori Centres for many years. You have seen me around in both Kea and Tui Rooms as I am a relief teacher. I really enjoy working with these age groups as they have so much to offer and we both learn alongside each other on a daily basis.

Murrey Lockie


Hi I’m Murrey. I am the caretaker here at Riverhead Montessori. You will find me mowing the lawns, cleaning the fish tank, fixing things around the school or in the shed making things for the classroom.