A national benchmark in
Educational excellence through integration of the arts

Grades K-4 Staff

Meet our Kindergarten through Fourth Grade teachers and teaching assistants.

Rebekah Walker Kindergarten Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 602

Rebekah holds a B.S. in Elementary Education from Central Methodist College.  She won the Elizabeth Stephenton Award in Art Education for making a four-foot King Babar puppet. Rebekah has been an educator for 18 years and has worked as a tutor at a private tutoring center, a teacher for Buncombe County Schools and in Delaware. Ms Rebekah joined the ArtSpace staff in 2002.  Rebekah enjoys laughing, spending time with family and friends, hiking, knitting, and volunteering for non-profit organizations.

Andrea Giglitto Kindergarten Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 647

Andrea earned a BA in modern languages and linguistics from the University of Maryland, and her teaching certification from University of North Carolina at Asheville. Andrea also earned her National Board Certification in Literacy: Reading and Language Arts in 2010. She has worked one-on-one with developmentally disabled children and taught first grade for Asheville City Schools for eight years.  For the past three years Andrea volunteered for the Ministry of Education for the Commonwealth of Dominica, assisting primary and secondary teachers with implementing reading interventions for struggling readers.  Andrea has traveled extensively throughout her life and believes experiencing other cultures is the best path to personal growth. This is Andrea’s first year at ArtSpace. In her free time she enjoys trail running, mountain biking, hiking and backpacking.

Heidi Blozan Kindergarten Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 649

Heidi earned a BA in education for middle school science and reading from Warren Wilson College.  She also possesses Montessori certification for 1st-3rd grades.  Heidi is one of the founding educators of the Swannanoa Valley Montessori School in Black Mountain. Heidi is the parent of an 8th grader at ArtSpace and an alumni currently a junior in High School. This is Heidi’s first year as a staff member at ArtSpace. In her spare time Heidi enjoys gardening, knitting and contra dancing.

Claire Spence First Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 614

Claire has a B.A. in Elementary Education and a M.Ed. in Special Education Early Intervention from UNC-Charlotte. She joined ArtSpace in 2012, but before that she taught in schools in private and public settings across NC.  Claire studied and trained with the famous developmental Reggio Emilia schools in Italy and in the summer 2015 she taught English to middle school students in Shanghai.  She also was privileged to research and explore elementary mathematical instruction with the Ministry of Education in Singapore. Claire was selected to be a member of the Governor’s Teacher Network 2014, conducting, reporting and presenting action based research on dramatic play in kindergarten.  Claire is an A+ Fellow, training teachers in other schools to embrace the arts integration philosophy in North Carolina. When not teaching or lesson planning, she enjoys exploring the Asheville area and travelling overseas.

DonorsChoose.org Projects:
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Adrienne Chaney 1st Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext. 626

Adrienne Chaney has enjoyed her years of working with children teaching in public schools, private schools, and Montessori charter schools for over 20 years. She has excitedly engaged in different teaching techniques to enhance the learning experiences of her students and is enthusiastic about learning even more during her time at ArtSpace as she collaborates with the amazing staff!  Along her journey as an educator she has also received certification and training in meditation for children, Positive Discipline, the Connection Practice and has been working with children on mindfulness, self-awareness, and peace education for many years.  Adrienne is relatively new to Asheville having moved here in the spring of 2015 with her 12 year old daughter.  She loves spending time in nature, drawing, painting, and writing, as well as all the many cultural events here in this beautiful area of Western North Carolina.  She is very excited to be a part of Art Space!

Amanda Cox First Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 640

Alison “Ali” Mellander Second Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 606

Ali holds a B.A. with Honors in Environmental Studies from University of California-Santa Cruz, and an A.S. in Horticulture from Santa Rosa Junior College. She has been an educator for 13 years. Ali is a Master Gardener and chair of the ArtSpace Bulbs and Butterflies committee.  She loves animals of all kinds, especially dogs, and spends her time gardening, hiking, nature, poetry, and yoga.

Annabell Lisa Second Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 605

Annabell earned a BA in education from Warren Wilson College.  Before joining the ArtSpace staff in 2004 she taught ESL in Brazil and Venezuela.  Annabell was ArtSpace teacher of the year for the 2012-2013 school year.  She enjoys hiking, painting, dancing, and gardening with her son Coltrane.

DonorsChoose.org Projects:
There are no projects available at this time.
Elise Fuller Second Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 615

Elise graduated from Appalachian State Cum Laude. She played varsity Field Hockey and taught snow skiing and snow boarding throughout her college career. After graduation she was the director of the children’s ski school. Elise completed prerequisite course work for veterinary school in Charleston, South Carolina. She joined the ArtSpace staff in 2014. Elise was a stay at home mom for several years. While at home she started a mini-farm where she raises rabbits, chickens, and pigs. Every summer Elise runs a science and art camp for children ages 4-12.

Melissa Redden Third Grade Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 639

Melissa joined our staff in the 2014-15 school year. She earned a Bachelor’s degree from Georgia College and State University with a certificate in Arts Integration. Before coming to ArtSpace, she taught third grade for 8 years at Brevard Elementary where she was Teacher of the Year in 2014. Melissa is in the process of earning her master’s degree and National Board certification.  In her free time Melissa enjoys creating all kinds of things (mostly knitting and sewing, but also jewelry, drawings, paper crafts, and visual design pieces). She also tremendously enjoys reading, kickboxing, and hiking.

Mary Wray Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787 ex: 601

Mary received her degree from Appalachian State University in Recreation Management.  After working briefly for the Forest Service in Lake Tahoe and being home with her son for three years, she started teaching at a Montessori School in Spruce Pine, where she spent the next fourteen years. Mary completed her elementary certification through UNCA in May 2014 and has taught second grade at Two Rivers Community School in Boone for the last two years. She has now joined Artspace teaching third grade. Mary enjoys guiding children through the process of discovering what inspires them, and igniting a passion to learn about the world. Mary’s bucket list includes becoming a master pasta maker on the Italian Riviera, going on safari in the Serengeti, and learning the mysteries of Angkor Wat (previous life goals were to become Indiana Jones).  Mary’s other interests include reading, cooking, hiking, camping, music, and spending time with family and friends. Mary is slightly obsessed with tubing on the river and can be found at the river near her house on most sunny summer days.

Julie Williams Third Grade Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 650

Tonya Clanton Fourth Grade Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 608

Ms. Tonya earned a Master of Education in Reading from the University of Florida.  She taught 4th – 8th grade at The Learning Community in Black Mountain for 5 years where she trained in and utilized reader’s and writer’s workshop.  She also collaborated with the arts teacher to integrate social studies curriculum with visual and perfoming arts.  After leaving TLC Ms. Tonya taught 5th – 8th grade language arts and social studies at two different charter schools.  She feels very fortunate to be a part of a community that nurtures the whole child and fosters critical thinking, problem solving, and independence through the arts.  Ms. Tonya’s favorite hobbies include writing, hip hop fitness, and learning to play the ukulele.  She and her husband enjoy traveling and attending concerts together.


DonorsChoose.org Projects:
There are no projects available at this time.
Kathy Self Fourth Grade Math and Science Teacher Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext

Ms. Kathy graduated from Auburn University with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and a Master’s degree in Child Development.  She finished her education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, focusing on Elementary Education.  Ms. Kathy has National Board Certification and has taught K-2nd grade for the past 22 years.  She received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching in 2007, and she was nominated by her previous school district for the Jacksonville State University’s Teacher’s Hall of Fame in 2012.  This is Ms. Kathy’s first year to teach at ArtSpace, and she’s thrilled to be starting this new adventure.  Other than teaching and learning, Ms. Kathy loves to play games, read, and spend time outdoors with her family and her dog Daisy.

Chris Williams Fourth Grade Teaching Assistant Artspace Charter School
Phone: 828.298.2787, ext 630

Chris earned an Associate of Arts degree from AB Tech Community College.  He has worked for Eliada Home for Children in their day school program as well as a house parent at the Black Mountain Home for Children for 8 years. Chris joined the ArtSpace staff for the 2015-2016 school year. In his spare time Chris enjoys hiking,  mountain biking, playing guitar and being a dad.