Montessori Guide Lena Pacheco found existing alphabet books lacking
“This summer I published a phonetic alphabet book series called ABC Possibilities. My three-year-old son is enrolled in the primary program at our school. Each weekend the school sends home a few books for the children to borrow. I noticed that all of the alphabet books were poorly designed, as they did not teach or reinforce phonics in a developmentally appropriate way. For example, the “A” book included words like alligator and ant but also words like awesome, airplane, etc. Other books included digraphs in their beginning sounds. How confusing! I started looking for a brand of alphabet books that started with basic consonants and short vowels and could not find anything. I finally decided the solution was to write my own. After printing it at Walgreens for home use, my Head of School suggested publishing it more broadly. The six book series is now available in cursive and in print on Amazon, and I intend to create a D’Nealian version as well.”
Lena started at CTMS (Children’s Tree Montessori School) as a parent and fell in love with the Montessori Method. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College with a Bachelor of Arts in Gender Studies, where she received the Helen Warren Smith Award for outstanding leadership and service. Immediately following graduation, she joined Teach For America, launching her 8 years as an elementary school teacher in the greater Hartford area. During her tenure as teacher, Lena took on many instructional leadership roles, facilitating professional development for new educators and writing curriculum materials. She then went on to become the Director of Education at Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame. She holds her Montessori Elementary Certification for ages 6-12. Lena is also an accomplished martial arts instructor and practitioner. She currently holds the rank of 2nd degree Black Belt in Kenpo Karate, Level 1 Jeet Kune Do Instructor Certification, blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and rank in Modern Arnis. She also enjoys the arts, particularly drawing, painting, and Latin and Ballroom dancing. She currently resides in Middletown, Connecticut with her husband and two children.