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The Early Learning Center is state-licensed and led by a full-time Director with a Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education. The teaching staff is a committed to providing a safe, secure, and loving environment for our children. We have a highly qualified staff of certified teachers, many of whom hold Master's Degrees in Early Childhood Education. Our low student-to-teacher ratio fosters the children's development as individuals. Our teachers are trained in CPR and pediatric first aid. We place an emphasis on continuing learning programs for our staff by having them participate in workshops for Early Childhood Educators throughout the year.


Miss Allison, Director

Hello! My name is Allison Tankel and I am proud to be be a part of the Congregation Ohr Shalom community as  Director of the Early Childhood Program now entering my ninth year.

 I currently live in Warren with my husband and have three sons .Josh who attends Texas Tech Dental School in El Paso, Matt, a recent graduate  from The University of Wisconsin ( ON WISCONSIN) and Ben a Sophomore at The University of Michigan ( GO BLUE). and my daughter, our golden retriever Scarlet Knight.

Sometimes as children we dream and hope to grow up to be a particular profession. For me, my dreams aspired to reality. At a ripe old age of eleven I began my career working as a babysitter and then a summer camp counselor. After graduating college, my original plan was to go into advertising, but my heart pulled me right back to developing youth. I returned to the classroom to get my Masters in Early Childhood and Elementary Education and later my Teacher of the Handicapped Certificate.

I began my teaching career as a Kindergarten teacher working in New York. Once I began raising my three boys as a stay at home mom I continued to teach religious school and early intervention. I spent many summers as a Division Head in the youngest division at a local day camp.

 In my spare time I  enjoy exercising( love my Peloton)  reading, reality TV especially my housewives , traveling and cooking! I have also taken up a new sport; Pickleball! Your children are "our" children and I look forward to watching them grow, smile, laugh and learn. Nothing is better than a hug or high five from a happy student! I love receiving tons of them!


Miss Amy, Assistant Director

Hi!  I'm Amy Weinstock. I love being part of the Congregation Ohr Shalom Family and the many hats I wear as Assistant Director of the ELC, Summer Fun Director and Purim Carnival organizer. 


Believe it or not, I started my professional life in pharmaceutical marketing and realized after a few years that I should be doing what I love, working with children.  I returned to grad school and received my Masters Degree from Bank Street College of Education and learned that Early Childhood was my calling and the Jewish sector was where I was meant to be.


I have taught 2 year olds, 3's, Mommy and Me, Tot Shabbat and Kindergarten Enrichment.  I have simultaneously taught religious school and been an assistant to the director of a preschool. I was also Assistant Director at Gesher Summer Camp for 11 years until it closed. 


I live in Randolph with my husband Eric, daughter Beryn (Michigan Grad - GO BLUE! and currently getting her Masters in Social Work at UPENN) and our Havanese, Gracie. My family means the world to me! In my spare time I am the Immediate Past President of my synagogue and am still heavily involved. I love spending time with my family and friends, traveling, movies, binge watching tv shows, reading and crafting.  


"By doing what you love, you inspire and awaken the hearts of others."  I am fortunate to do so every day.  I look forward to inspiring your children and seeing their excitement as they learn something for the first time.


Miss Penni, Wee Ones and Doodlebugs

My name is Penni Beckerman and I am so excited to join Ohr Shalom (Summit JCC) Early Learning Center! I
love working with young children and was a
stay-at-home mom with my two children for 13
years. I have a son, Roen, 13 years old, and
a daughter, Dalia, 11 years old, and a cavapoo
puppy. I earned my Master of Social Work
from Fordham University and am passionate about
early childhood education. In my free
time, I enjoy watching my son play baseball and
lacrosse and watching my daughter perform
gymnastics and compete in volleyball. I am looking
forward to an amazing year with the Wee Ones
and Doodlebugs.


Miss Naomi, Seedlings (two's)

Hi. I’m Miss Naomi and am excited to teach Seedlings for the fourth year! What I love most about working with two year-olds is seeing their independence bloom. What I also love is the wonderful, supportive parent and teacher community at ELC. In addition to teaching kids, I write for kids. I'm pursuing publishing picture and chapter books with my literary agent, and also regularly publish articles in a local magazine. I taught Art Appreciation and After School Enrichment art and craft classes at the Wyoming School in Millburn for many years. My husband Sam and I have triplets and a younger daughter who’ve grown and flown, a cat named Midnight, and a recently adopted a puppy named Penny Lane. When I’m not teaching or writing, I create ceramics, bake, needlepoint and knit. I can’t wait to get to know all of your children!


Miss Emmy, Seedlings (2's)

Shalom! My name is Emmy Atlas and I am so excited to be returning to the ELC this fall!

I live in Livingston with my husband Harry; I have two grown children Elana and Noah and an adorable, mischievous cat named Roo.

I adore children of all ages and have been working in Jewish education for many years.  In addition to teaching in the ELC previously from 2017-2020, I taught Hebrew and Judaic Studies for 10 years in the JLC here at COS/SJCC and for the past 5 years I have been teaching Hebrew reading and Holocaust studies at a synagogue in Livingston.  I spent 10 summers as a 1st grade unit head at a local Jewish day camp, 4 years as the Jewish Family Concierge for Montclair through the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest, and 4 years as the Director of Youth and Community Programs at COS/SJCC.  I feel a strong connection to the land of Israel, Jewish rituals and tradition and enjoy sharing these with my students through stories, songs and crafts.

I love working here at the synagogue where I just completed a two-year term on the Board of Trustees and continue to be an active member of the congregation. 

The ELC is truly my happy place, and I can’t wait to meet my newest class of delicious, little seedlings!


Miss Nina,  Seedlings (two's)

My name is Nina Cymbol and I am proud to join the ELC faculty. I have always loved children and have been working with with preschool age d groups for over 15 years. My family moved a year ago from NY, so now I am a Jersey girl. I am married with 2 children and now have three pandemic pets. Lots of changes! I cannot tell you how 

excited I am to work at the JCC and to meet your little ones! Looking forward to a wonderful school year.


Miss Liz,  Seedlings (two's)

Hi, my name is Liz Nichter, and I am thrilled to be joining the Summit JCC ELC family.

 I live in Livingston, NJ with my husband Larry and my oldest son Willy, while my younger son Matthew lives and works in Sonoma, California.

I was privileged to be a stay-at-home mom for 20+ years watching my boys grow up.  During this time, I was very involved in the PTA as well as the PPEC in the Livingston district.

Although I graduated with an Undergraduate Business degree, I have been around children of all ages my whole adult life. I come from a very large family with many nieces and nephews and have watched them all grow up.

I love cooking, walking, ballet barre and spending time with family and friends.

I am so excited to start this new chapter of my life and can’t wait to meet you all!

Shara Schild (1).jpg

Miss Shara,  Seedlings (two's)

Hi, my name is Shara Schild and I am excited to play with your children and help them to develop and learn.

I was born and raised in Livingston but then I went South and graduated from Tulane University and received my Masters in Social Work degree in Miami, Florida.

I have worked many years with Jewish organizations from counseling to teaching to volunteering in addition to my extensive years in sales and talent management.

I have three grown children, a wonderful husband who I met in college and I am a proud grandma of a two year old who gives me lots of extra practice for your children.

In my spare time, I love to walk and hike outdoors, listen to music and spend as much time as possible with my family.


Miss Hannah, Doodlebugs, Seedlings (two's)

Hi, I’m Hannah. This is my second year at the ELC and I’m excited to be with the Doodles and Seedlings classes. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know many of your children while working our early care program and subbing in afternoon classes. My favorite part about teaching is seeing children grow and develop as individuals. I also have a degree as an Esthetician and perform waxing services in the evenings and on weekends. In my free time, I enjoy coffee on a lazy Sunday and exploring new places with friends. I look forward to a great school year!


Miss Jen,  Sprouts (three's)

Hi!  My name is Jennifer Tamres and I am so thrilled to be teaching the  
3s at the Summit JCC.  I have spent a lifetime surrounding myself with children, and can’t wait to make your children part of our JCC family.   

I am from California and met my husband, David while I was getting my Masters in Social Work at Columbia University. We moved from New York City to Randolph in 2000, to raise our three beautiful children. Brandon is entering his senior year at the University of Maryland, Hailey will be a sophomore at the University of Michigan, and Jason is going into his senior year at Randolph High School. We have a 5 pound Morkie and a 150 pound Saint Bernard puppy.    

I began working with children at twelve years old as a babysitter and haven’t stopped working with kids since.  I spent summers working as a counselor at a sleep away camp, I worked with disadvantaged youth in Manhattan, and was a therapist for deaf students.   I also taught Hebrew school and most recently have been working as substitute teacher in the Randolph elementary schools. Regardless of title or position, the common thread is I love to work with children.  

In my free time I love to watch any of the sports my kids are playing, hang out with my family, travel, watch reality tv, try new restaurants and exercise.  I can’t wait to get to know your children and make this one of the best years ever!   


Miss Andrea,  Sprouts (three's)

My name is Andrea Plitt and I’m so excited to join the Summit JCC family.


I am from Argentina and moved to Summit 10 years ago with my family. Back there I was an ICU physician in a public hospital in Buenos Aires. In my 20s I studied to be a Pre-K teacher and soon after I arrived here I volunteered at the Summit Library in the Pre-K program Story Time where I taught little kids Spanish while reading popular stories, playing and singing well-known songs.


I am married to Fabian and I am a mother of 3. Iara is currently studying at the University of Delaware, Eitan is entering freshman year at the Summit High School, and Matthew is starting 4th grade at Washington Elementary School in Summit.


In my free time I enjoy hiking and appreciating the outdoors, traveling and spending time with my family.


Miss Sharryn,  Sprouts (three's)

My passion is working with children and I am excited to be starting my third year at the Summit JCC. My husband Ken and I have two wonderful children. Sam graduated in 2020 from Miami University Farmer School of Business and is now an Auditing Accountant with BDO. 

Louis will starting his senior year at Brandeis University, majoring in chemical biology and biology. In my free time, I love cooking, baking, watching reality tv, traveling, sports, and going to the movies.

After graduating from college, I worked in advertising and public relations at the St. Louis
Jewish Light Newspaper. Feel free anytime to ask me about my hometown, St. Louis… the home of the 2019 Stanley Cup champions Blues and St. Louis Cardinals baseball.  For eight summers, I worked at B’nai B’rith Perlman Camp, where, I coordinated administration of the main office, managed the canteen, and coordinated the visiting day scholarship auction.

I know it’s going to be another great year and I look forward to being on this journey with your children each day


Miss Irene,  Sprouts (three's)

Hello, my name is Irene Rubinshtein and I am so excited to be teaching the 3’s this year. Every day brings unexpected learning experiences and I love to see children grow socially, cognitively and emotionally. I was a pre-k teacher as well as a 4th grade religious school teacher. I am married and have four children, two boys and two girls. In my spare time I enjoy reading, traveling, and spending time with my family. I look forward to sharing my adventure with your child and hearing about all of theirs!


Miss Debi, Trees (Pre-K)

Hi! My name is Miss Debi and I am thrilled to be back for my third year at the Summit JCC. Three years ago I had the privilege of working one day a week in each of the grade level classes at the ELC.  That was when I realized how special the ELC is. Prior to coming to the ELC I spent the last 10 summers working with children at a sleep away camp in Upstate New York.  I enjoy the warm weather, going to the beach, reading, shopping and spending time with my family. My husband Bryan and I have four wonderful children.  I have triplet daughters (Jamie, Lauren & Emily) who are juniors in college and a son (Jake) who is a junior in High School.  I look forward watching your child grow and flourish this year.  Thank you for sharing your precious little ones with us!!!


Miss Stacy, Trees ( Pre-K)

Hello! My name is Stacy Schapiro. I am so happy to be returning for my second year in Pre-k and my third year at the ELC! My formal education started at Syracuse University where i graduated with a business degree. However, my passion was always working with children so I pursued a masters in Elementary Education from Boston University after graduating college.

I then became a 1st grade teacher in the Livingston Public School District. After a few years teaching in Livingston, I decided to take time off to raise my 3 wonderful children,Sydnee, Jake and Josh.  For the last few years, I've been working part-time in various school settings until I arrived at the ELC where I’m loving being a teacher in the early education setting!

In my personal life, I am married to my wonderful husband, Eric and we reside in Basking Ridge.  My daughter, Sydnee is pursuing her teaching degree in Elementary Education and will graduate this December. My son Jake is a junior at Elon university and is currently abroad in London studying Finance for the semester. My youngest son Josh is entering his junior year in high school and we look forward to watching him play Varsity basketball this season! I spend most of my free time watching my boys play basketball, walking my furry baby Cocoa, shopping,and gardening! I look forward to sharing my knowledge and helping each child based on their individual needs. It is  such a privilege to be able to watch your children grow and flourish and see the world through their eyes.  Pre-k is magical and I can'twait to experience all the fun and exciting things we have planned for your children!!


Miss Eileen, Trees (Pre-K)

I love being a teacher.  My students are an important part of my life.  I aim to provide a warm and enriching environment for each child.  


My formal education is in Elementary Education with a concentration in Language Arts.  I am also a certified Teacher of the Handicapped.  I have attended multiple workshops in Early Childhood Education and I am trained in CPR and First Aid.


On a personal note, I am married with two grown daughters with families of their own.  As a parent, I was very involved with my children's lives and education.  I now love spending time with my six grandchildren.  I have always taken pride in being a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and teacher.


Miss Rachel, Trees (Pre-K)

Hello - I'm Miss Rachel and this is my eighth year working with Miss Eileen and the ELC family. I'm so excited to be back in preschool...  It's such a magical place!  I love laughing, reading stories, using my imagination and working hard to learn new things.  I also enjoy traveling and exploring new places with my family.   I am married to a wonderful husband/father and we have 16 year old miracle triplets that keep us very busy, (along with 2 dogs and a dozen chickens).  I look forward to a fabulous fun and safe school year together.


Teacher, Science Emeritus

Hello - I'm Miss Rhoda and this is my 32nd year teaching at the ELC! I love teaching science to your children.  They are curious and love to explore the world around them. I have two children and six grandchildren and a cock-a-poo named Missy!  I look forward to a great year.


Miss Amy

 Hi, I’m Amy. Although this is my first year teaching at the ELC, I have long been involved here — I actually attended the ELC when I was younger!  I have had many years of childcare experience in multiple settings, including being a counselor at summer camps, teaching at Congregation Ohr Shalom’s Religious School, and volunteering at the Friendship Circle.  When I’m not at the ELC I love to explore Manhattan with my friends, sing in my car, and weight lift. I live at home with my parents and two dog-sisters, labradoodles Riley and Roxie. I have an older brother who lives in Washington D.C. with his wife and son. I can’t wait to get to know your children and have an awesome school year!

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