Elise Huneke-stone

director of training


Portland, OR & Spokane, WA

Email Elise

> Joined MNW in 2012
> Dir. of Elementary Training, MNW, since 2012
> AMI Elementary Diploma, WMI, 1987
> AMI Primary Diploma, MNW, 2010
> M.Ed. Montessori Ed., Loyola 2011
> AMI Elementary Examiner since 2011
> 4 years Lower Elementary experience
> 10 years Upper Elementary experience
> 7 years Adolescent experience
> AMI-NAMTA Orientation to Adolescent Studies, 2001-2005
> Workshop presenter for OMA, MANZ, NAMTA, AMI-EAA

What I do at MNW
I'm the Director of Elementary Training in Portland (academic year) and also in Spokane, Washington (summers). I inspire and support people who wish to work with elementary children in a positive, peaceful, life-affirming Montessori way.

What I like about MNW
I appreciate MNW's confidence, vision, and hope.

A book (or book series)
As a child, I loved Little Men by Louisa May Alcott above all others--it was the beginning of my teacher training.

A hobby
I've been keeping a journal for over 30 years, and I also write poetry, lyrics, and fiction.

A surprising skill
I have trained as a doula and childbirth educator, and it's been an honor to support women who are giving birth.

Words to live by
Every day is a gift. I have a friend who has this tattooed backwards on his chest so he can read it in the mirror, and in our circle of friends, we take turns reminding each other of this on Facebook.

School subject
In both high school and college, my favorite coursework was in social anthropology. I was especially interested in the universal child and how different childbirth and child-raising practices could influence development.


Originally from Connecticut, Elise Huneke-Stone came to Portland in 1980 to attend Reed College, graduating with a B.A. in Psychology. She earned her AMI Elementary diploma in 1987 and her Primary diploma in 2010, and has a Masters in Education from Loyola University Maryland. With twenty-one years of classroom experience, Elise has taught at both lower and upper elementary levels, and is an Oregon Registry Master Trainer. She is mother to Virginia and Sara, both Montessori educated, and wife to David Ayer, a Montessori primary/adolescent teacher and administrator. Elise and David were program developers and teachers for the Montessori Adolescent Project NW in Portland and spent three years as resident faculty at the Hershey Montessori Farm School in Ohio. Elise spent an additional two years in residence at Hershey during her Training of Trainers. She worked for several summers at the NAMTA Orientation to Adolescence, has presented at AMI-EAA and NAMTA events, and served for six years on the board of the Oregon Montessori Association. In addition to her Montessori work, Elise has worked with families as a certified natural childbirth educator and doula.