Steve Zaharris, Math Teacher, SmartLab Facilitator
Room Number 117
Mr. Zaharris has a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from the University of Colorado at Boulder and his Teaching Certification from Metropolitan State College. He has spent 4 years as an educator at Merrill Middle School teaching 8th grade math. He is now the facilitator of the SmartLab. His hobbies include math, spending time with his 2 daughters, playing and watching sports. He also enjoys coaching Soccer and Volleyball at Merrill. Mr. Zaharris enjoys teaching at Merrill Middle School because of the diverse international population, the neighborhood, and the great staff members.
Elena Petrova, 8th Grade Math Teacher
Room Number: 213
Ms. Petrova holds a MA in Teaching Math at the Middle School Level from the University of Northern Colorado. She has taught at Merrill Middle School since 2000. Ms. Petrova has worked for 21 years as an educator in both middle and high school. Her hobbies include yoga, hiking, reading, and spending time with family.
Danielle Price, Math Teacher
Room Number 18
Ms. Price started her teaching career in 2007 at Merrill Middle School as a Math teacher. Ms. Price received a B.S. in Mathematics with a minor in Secondary Education and ELL Instruction from Regis University. Ms. Price graduates in December of 2011 with her Masters of Arts in Education with an emphasis in Teaching and Learning with Linguistically Diverse Learners.
Danielle loves teaching at Merrill because of the community atmosphere. She loves the fact that the diversity cultures and learning abilities is so vast, that each new day, and each class is a different challenge. She enjoys the challenge of teaching 7th grade students because each day “is like a box of chocolates…you never know” what kind of student you’ll get that day.
Outside of education, Ms. Price likes to spend her free time outdoors and in the mountains right here in Colorado. She likes to go hiking and attend sporting events.
Juanita MacKenzie, Math Teacher
Room Number 208
Ms. MacKenzie is starting her 8th year at Merrill and currently teaching 6th grade math using the CMP2 (Connected Math) curriculum.
Ms. MacKenzie graduated from Western Washington University in Bellingham, WA with a degree in Geology. She first worked with the U.S. Geological Survey and then spent the next 10 years living and working in Ecuador. Her career in education started in 1995 when she graduated from University of Colorado at Denver with a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.
Some of her hobbies include hiking, reading, collecting art, spending time with family, travelling and bike riding.
Nicole Malling, Math Teacher
Room Number 219
This is Ms. Malling’s 9th year teaching and her 8th year at Merrill. She has a Bachelor’s in Math and Social Studies teaching to grades 4-9 from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She very much enjoys working with the diverse international students at Merrill Middle School. Her hobbies include soccer, being outdoors, and hanging out with her husband and twin boys.
Gerald Maness, Math Teacher
Room Number 113
Mathematics teacher for 6th, 7th, and 8th grades.
Bachelor degree in Psychology from Portland State University. Mr. Maness has worked in education since 1976 performing a variety of jobs in a variety of school environments. He has had the chance to work with students aged from 11 to 20 in subjects across the curriculum. With this history of experiences, he chose to work at Merrill because of the diversity that it offers him, both in the subject matter and the students with whom he gets to interact.