Class Teachers

Andrea Arrivillaga Hurtado

Andrea Arrivillaga Hurtado

Teacher (grades 5 & 6), Technical Director, Primary Grades Coordinator

Andrea was born in Guatemala City and grew up in Quetzaltenango, where she began to teach in 1998. She has lived in El Salvador and Italy, where she had the opportunity to study art history in the Renaissance and Italian language. Andrea has also studied Social Work and Tourism Business Administration.
Andrea has worked at Escuela Caracol since 2008, where she first helped with the crucial legalization of the school by the Ministry of Education. She began as a Spanish teacher, and became a lead primary teacher in 2010.
She completed her Waldorf education training in 2013, becoming the first elementary school teacher in Guatemala to become a certified Waldorf teacher.
Her favorite hobbies are theater, drawing, crafts, painting with watercolor and storytelling. She loves spending time with her son Antú, who grew up in this school.

Carmen Maria Alvarado Benitez

Carmen Maria Alvarado Benitez

Primary Teacher (Grade 3)

— Bio forthcoming —

Ervin Samuel Quiacaín Sajvín

Ervin Samuel Quiacaín Sajvín

Primary Teacher (Grade 1)

Ervin has been working in Escuela Caracol since 2010. He was born in San Marcos La Laguna and comes from a family of 6. He has a his title in Guatemala as an Elementary Teacher of Bilingual & Intercultural Education (Tz’utujil-Spanish). Ervin completed his Waldorf training at the Centro Antroposófico in Cuernavaca, México in 2016. His manner in the classroom is patient, calm and caring, and he enjoys woodwork, drawing and painting.

Diego Sacach Mendoza

Diego Sacach Mendoza

Primary Teacher (Grade 4)

Diego is the primary teacher of the 4th grade, as well as our music and Kaqchikel Teacher (Mayan local language). He enjoys working and playing with children and singing in Kaqchikel.

Ursula Mendez

Ursula Mendez

Assistant Teacher, KinderCaracol I

Ursula is the assistant teacher in the KinderCaracol I class with Maribel. She has a son and a daughter. The son is in the first grade at Caracol.

Nazario Ignacio (Nacho) Porón Petzey

Nazario Ignacio (Nacho) Porón Petzey

Primary Teacher (Grade 2)

Nacho joined Escuela Caracol in 2011. He was born in San Pablo Laguna, where he lives with his wife and two children (both of whom attend Escuela Caracol). His title in Guatemala is “Teacher of Creative Expression” with an emphasis in music, and he has worked as a teacher for nearly ten years in a variety of institutions. He is also working on a university degree in pedagogy. Nacho is currently teaching specialty subject classes in handwork. He brings a wide range of expertise in handwork (he is a professional tailor and is familiar with many local handwork traditions, from weaving to mat-making), and has considerable training in the arts, from music to dance to theater. Nacho is currently completing his Waldorf training at the Centro Antroposófico in Cuernavaca, México.

Sandra Pérez

Sandra Pérez

Lead Teacher, KinderCaracol II

Sandra has been working at Escuela Caracol since January 2011. She was born in San Marcos La Laguna where she lives with her parents, four brothers and two sisters. She studied computation in San Marcos, Sololá, and Santa Clara, all areas around Lake Atitlán. She enjoys reading, painting, cooking, embroidery, and spending time with friends.

Lily Maribel Mendoza Sancoy

Lily Maribel Mendoza Sancoy

Lead Teacher, KinderCaracol I

Marilily, as the children refer to her, has been working in KinderCaracol since 2009. She was born in San Marcos La Laguna and comes from a family of 10. In 2014, Marilily finished her Waldorf training at the Centro Antroposófico in Cuernavaca, México, becoming the first indigenous woman to complete this training. Marilily is the lead teacher for our kindergarten children. Her manner in the classroom is warm, gentle, bright and cheerful, and she enjoys sewing, singing, drawing and painting.

Lisa Anderson

Lisa Anderson

English as a 3rd Language teacher (grades 1-6)

Lisa comes to Escuela Caracol via Costa Rica where she and her family spent the last year teaching and living in the cloud forest. In 2014 after spending six weeks studying Spanish in Guatemala, they knew they wanted to spend more time on the shores of Lake Atitlán. That dream is being realized as Lisa takes on the teaching role of English in the primary grades 1-6, with a couple of movement classes thrown in for good measure. Lisa has a Masters of Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Curriculum & Instruction/German & English as a Second Language (ESL). While the past 15 years Lisa has taught at the college level, she is embracing the opportunity to teach in the primary grades and enjoys the daily interactions with her students. Lisa loves to eat “la comida tipica”, swim in the lake, ride the lanchas and be in nature with her husband and daughter. Lisa is honored to be a part of the Escuela Caracol community and thrilled that her daughter gets to experience a Waldorf education!