5th Grade Lead Teacher
Ms. Lopez has been living in Los Angeles County her entire life, which has sparked her passion to help inspire the city’s youth. By being raised in this area, she has gained the ability to and appreciation for interacting with a wide variety of cultures in this diverse city. She received both her B.A. and M.A. from California State University, Fullerton. During her college career, she gained experience working with children in a variety of positions. From being the Director of Native American Programs at YMCA’s Camp Arbolado to being a science instructor at the Hands-On Science Camp at the California Science Center, she continued to realize how much she truly enjoyed giving kids the ability to learn science in a hands-on way and through various teaching styles. After leaving her lab coat at the Science Center, she then went on to teach at the New Academy of Science and Arts in Los Angeles. There she spent three years as the schoolwide science teacher, and the last two as the 5th grade teacher. While teaching at N.A.S.A., she was selected to participate in the BOEING Teacher Institute, which was a 5-day program that included resources for bringing current science into the classroom. She is thrilled to be able to bring her hands-on student based learning and cooperative techniques to CWC. She believes that there is nothing more rewarding than seeing children excited to learn, which gives her the motivation to create curriculum that will engage students in a fun, innovative way. When she is not in the classroom, Mariela enjoys unwinding through her paintbrush and a canvas, finding new music to share with her students, or releasing her inner child by watching cartoons. Ms. Lopez is a native and fluent Spanish speaker.