Teaching Foundations (Southern California)

Aug 01, 2023 9:00AM—Aug 04, 2023 3:00PM


St. Margaret’s Episcopal School | San Juan Capistrano, CA

Cost $2,325 members; $1,975 group-rate; $3,475 non-members

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Teaching Foundations

SESSION 1: August 1, 2023 | 9:00am - 3:00pm

SESSION 2: August 2, 2023 | 9:00am - 3:00pm

SESSION 3: August 3, 2023 | 9:00am - 3:00pm

SESSION 4: August 4, 2023 | 9:00am - 3:00pm


The Teaching Foundations program is designed to support the growth and success of all teachers—particularly those in their early years at independent schools—by focusing on foundational areas of teaching. Clearly, COVID-19 continues to change the landscape of teaching and learning, presenting us with new challenges and opportunities in the field of education. Teachers must be ready for new forms of learning, adopting and refining their curriculum and practice to respond to the ever changing demands while simultaneously developing a steadiness that promotes their own well-being and safeguards the social-emotional needs of their students.

Sessions are organized around the following topics: identity and culture (self, school, and learning environment); lesson design and pedagogy; building successful professional relationships; communication and feedback; and sustaining a career in teaching.

Led by master teachers, administrators, and guest presenters, this respected program provides participants with personalized attention and specific instruction that is adaptable for all grade levels. Emphasis is placed on modeling and using inclusive practices for lesson planning, classroom management, and assessment, as well as on developing time management and communication skills, cultural humility, and confidence as an advisor and leader. Even seasoned teachers find useful tools and benefit from the opportunity to work with top educators in a supportive, inclusive atmosphere.


CATDC and St. Margaret's Episcopal School will be working together to do all we can to ensure your health and safety during our in-person session, monitoring closely nationwide, state, and local updates and recommendations. We ask that you do not attend if you are infected with Covid, have Covid symptoms, or have had close contact with someone who is infected in the last 10 days.

Starting February 2023, we will no longer check vaccination status at the first session of our workshops, but we strongly encourage all CATDC participants to be fully vaccinated.

Given the nature of our in-person programs which gather individuals together from a variety of schools and regions, CATDC may also require or strongly recommend masking indoors and/or testing on a program-by-program basis.  Any updated recommendations or requirements will be communicated to participants in a timely fashion prior to a program or session.   All Covid-related refund requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Thank you for your understanding and your cooperation.



Natalie Babcock is an elementary school educator at The Center for Early Education (CEE) in West Hollywood, California. After cutting her teeth in the Early Childhood sector, Natalie earned her Masters Degree and Teaching Credential from Bay Area Teacher Training Institute (BATTI), in Oakland, California. In 2018, Natalie moved back home to her native Los Angeles and worked in LAUSD as a fifth grade teacher. Today, Natalie calls CEE home and is proud to be in her fourth year at The Center, currently working in the Upper Elementary Division. She has contributed essays to the Los Angeles Times and hosts a Children’s storytelling podcast called Small Tales.


Victor Cota serves as the Director of Equity and Inclusion at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano, CA. A native of Orange County, Victor attended the University of Southern California and earned bachelor’s degrees in psychology and religion. In 2007, he moved to Houston, TX, as a member of Teach for America. At Houston’s YES Prep Public Schools, he began his career as a middle school math teacher and then served as a middle school principal. In 2012, Victor earned his MBA from Rice University and his principal certification through the Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program. In 2015, Victor moved back to southern California and became the director of Breakthrough SJC, a community-based organization that serves students from historically underrepresented backgrounds as they shape their paths to college graduation. In 2018, he became the inaugural Director of Equity and Inclusion at St. Margaret’s as the school community looked to solidify and deepen its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.


Kelly Kuolt is in her second year as the PK-5 Instructional Coach at The Pegasus School in Huntington Beach, CA. Prior to Pegasus, Kelly worked for seven years at Carlthorp School in Santa Monica, ultimately serving as their Director of Service Learning after teaching both P.E. and 6th grade. Outside of her independent school experience, Kelly spent two years teaching at a public elementary school in rural New Hampshire, as well as a year teaching PK-12 English at a Catholic school in Santiago, Chile. Kelly earned a B.A. in Public Relations at Gonzaga University, an M.A. and K–6 Teaching Credential from Pepperdine University, and her Differentiated Curriculum for Gifted Students certificate from the University of Southern California. She has a passion for gifted education and believes in providing students with the opportunity to learn about and find solutions to societal challenges in creative ways. She is also an active voice for building inclusive, equitable school communities and is currently working with teachers to incorporate the Learning for Justice Social Justice standards into the Pegasus curriculum.


Taryn Marshall is Lower and Upper School History Instructor at Marlborough School, Los Angeles. Since earning her M. Ed. at UCLA’s School of Education, she has been a founding history teacher for a girls’ public charter middle school in Los Angeles valley, and then transitioned to Marlborough in 2020. In her current position at Marlborough, she teaches a 7th grade Civics and Citizenship course, an interdisciplinary 10th grade American Studies History course, and advises multiple groups of 12th grade students in Honors Research in Social Sciences and Capstone internship program. Taryn’s interest lies in the intersectionality of gender equity, as can be reflected in her experiences such as earning her B.A. in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from a women’s college, and working with a feminist non-profit for high school students in Newark, NJ. Her current interest is thinking about how to center teacher and students’ authentic selves for joy and learning in the classroom.

Alexander Wenderoff

Alexander Wenderoff is a 4th grade teacher at The Center for Early Education (CEE) in West Hollywood. After studying Art History and World Religions at McGill University in Montreal, he followed the paths of both his parents into education. His time in the classroom has spanned many settings: public schools in Washington, DC while serving as a member of the DC Teaching Fellows, parochial school in San Francisco, public school in Oakland, CA, public charter schools in New York City and ultimately landing at CEE. During his time teaching in New York he earned his Master's from Relay Graduate School of Education. Connecting with his students through discovering shared interests, playing at recess, or mostly laughing together is his priority. His mother, an elementary classroom teacher for over thirty years, shared that the job of an elementary teacher is to entertain and enlighten, in that order. Alexander takes those words to heart, focusing on creating a classroom culture in which students are, in addition to being seen and met where they are, able to experience joy.


Cancellation Policy

Life happens. We understand that there will be times when you cannot attend a workshop that you have registered and paid for. We strive to be as helpful and flexible as possible when things out of your control happen. Please visit our FAQ page for detailed information about our cancellation policy and answers to frequently asked questions about enrollment and membership.