Ilka started Tivoli Rainbow Garden Preschool in 2008. Her vision was to create a platform for German speaking families to sustain their heritage within the next generation by teaching their children the German language and culture in a playful environment. Her passion is to guide and support children and parents in finding and trusting their way in being a family.
Ilka is certified by the Waldorf Institute of Southern California as a Waldorf teacher and has studied early childhood education at Santa Monica college. In addition she is a UCLA certified Lactation Specialist and Dona International certified Postpartum Doula as well as a certified Sports, Gymnastic and Movement Expression Teacher.
She has been teaching infant and toddler programs as well as educational parenting groups for the past 30 years in Europe and the USA and most currently through the YWCA, in Santa Monica.
Ilka has participated in many compassioned- communication and conflict resolution workshops and trainings.
Member of WECAN, NACEY,DONA International.
Petra Lang, Assistant Teacher
Petra was born and raised in Austria. She moved to Los Angeles in December 2013. Having made that big change in her life, she decided to follow her passion to work with children. In 2015, she started to attend Santa Monica College to get her degree in Early Childhood Education. Petra loves nature and believes in the magic of childhood. She likes to sing and tell stories. She believes that as a teacher, it’s important to create an environment in which children can grow into caring and mindful individuals. She is grateful for the opportunity to do just that at Tivoli.
Finja Enciso, Classroom Assistant
Born and raised in Germany, Finja moved to the US for her Master‘s in the summer of 2015. Since then she has been working in the Education Department at the J. Paul Getty Museum and also started to work with elementary students through a tutoring agency. That is how she discovered that her passion is early childhood. Finja is currently enrolled in classes at Santa Monica College to get her Early Childhood Education teaching certificate. She strongly believes in learning through play, a philosophy that wonderfully fits into the Tivoli community. Outside of work Finja likes to run and cook. Homemade Risotto is her favorite!
Chrys Massey-Rhodes, In-House Consultant
Chrys Massey- Rhodes is a Child Development Specialist with a professional and philosophical focus in Humanistic Education. She studied Child Development and Psychology at California State University, Northridge and has had the privilege of working in private and public settings, such as Play Mountain Place, The Nurtury Preschool, Hill an’ Dale Preschool and the Los Angeles Unified School District as well as The Foundation for the Junior Blind. Chrys also studied RIE/Resources in Infant Educaring with Magda Gerber and received a certification in Childbirth Education.
Chrys consults and supports our staff and also holds parenting workshops for all Tivoli families, guiding them through the early childhood years.
Steffi Jones, Yoga Teacher and Classroom Assistant
Steffi was born and raised in Germany. In 1995 she graduated from the School of Physiotherapy in Wasserburg, Germany with the degree of a Physiotherapist. In 2002 she became an Osteopath through the International Academy of Osteopathy.
During her first pregnancy Steffi discovered the power of Yoga for herself and started a 200-hour yoga teacher training by Max Strom. She then combined two of her strongest passions, Children and Yoga, and became a yoga teacher in several different settings. Steffi has been at Tivoli since 2010.
Markus Iliko, Music Teacher
Markus joined the Tivoli team in the Fall of 2017 and the children love him! He brings great joy with the wonderful music he plays on his guitar and the kids love to sing and dance along.