Susan was born and raised in Rigby, Idaho. She graduated from Rigby High School and then went to Eastern Idaho Technical College to become a dental assistant. She enjoyed this career for nearly 15 years, working in clinics in Idaho Falls, Pocatello, and Salt Lake City. She has also worked as a florist, a cashier, a typesetter and a custodian.
Susan moved to Willard in the summer of 2005 and over the next few years six children came into her home – four girls and two boys. While working as a substitute teacher for the Box Elder School District, she fell in love with teaching. She was soon enrolled in school and graduated in 2015 from Ashford University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. She worked as a custodian at Box Elder High School for four years while she finished her degree. During the last year of her schooling, Susan worked as an Instructional Assistant at Maria Montessori Academy in North Ogden in a mixed-aged classroom.
In August of 2016, Susan began her teaching career at Promontory School of Expeditionary Learning teaching in the 3/4 community.
3/4 Crew Teacher
Darnelle Earl was born in Utah and then lived in Idaho. She returned to Utah for her high-school years and is a graduate of Box Elder High. She earned an associate's degree from Weber State University, a Bachelor of Arts in interdisciplinary studies in elementary education (K-6), and in elementary education (1-8) from Western Governors University.
Darnelle has wanted to be a teacher since she was very young. She started her education at Weber State and then stayed home to care for her children and to teach preschool. She has always been active in her children's education and was able to make her dream a reality of becoming a teacher.
When Darnelle is not teaching she enjoys spending time with her five children, family, and friends. She loves to research different topics of interest, read, and listen to music.
Darnelle loves expeditionary learning because connections are made through exploring and hands-on activities, which create character traits for life-long learning. She looks forward to teaching at Promontory because expeditionary learning allows students to explore and teachers to guide.
One of Darnelle’s favorite quotes is from the poem “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
3/4 Crew Teacher
Megan Merkley grew up in Utah, enjoying all the beauty that the state has to offer! After graduating from high school, Megan attended Utah State University and finished her degree at the University of Phoenix. After several years in hospitality and marketing, Megan decided that teaching was the path she was meant to follow. Megan has always enjoyed working with children, starting with helping in her mother’s kindergarten classroom at a very young age. She has also spent many years teaching preschool, substituting in elementary classrooms, conducting after-school programs and volunteering. In 2018, Megan began with Promontory in the Special Education department and decided that it was home.
Megan is excited about the model of Expeditionary Learning because of the hands-on and outdoor learning experiences that are offered to the children. Megan loves Promontory School because of the support she receives in creating a positive and amazing learning environment for her students.
Megan, her husband, and their six children are happy to call Brigham City home. When not in the classroom, Megan can be found reading, cooking, hiking, camping, and playing in the water!
“Children are not a distraction from more important work. They are the most important work.”
Ms. Lynette Reeder is a teacher in the 3-4 Community at Promontory School of Expeditionary Learning. She teaches math, reading, writing, science, art and social studies. She enjoys integrating the curriculum and believes that children learn best when they make concrete connections within and across disciplines.
Ms. Reeder graduated from Utah State University with her B.S. degree in elementary education along with a reading endorsement. She is trained in brain-based learning, integrating the arts, coperative learning, multiple intelligences, and project-based learning along with curriculum mapping and design.
Ms. Reeder has taught elementary school for over 20 years. She previously taught grades 1-3 for 12 years at Bunderson Elementary in Brigham City, Utah and grades 3-5 for 4 years at Venture Academy in Marriott-Slaterville. This is her 5th year teaching grades 3-4 at Promontory School.
Lynette’s specialty is helping all children love learning by designing rich, creative, and hands-on/minds-on learning experiences. She has a strong art background and brings art to her curriculum in order to encourage student expression and creative problem solving.
During her teaching career, she has been recognized and nominated for several teaching wards including a two time Disney Teacher Award, Teacher of the Year, and the Expeditionary Learning Klingenstein Award. She has participated and led leadership circles, orchestrated curriculum design teams, and facilitated after-school art clubs.
When Ms. Reeder is not teaching at Promontory or planning experiences for her crew, she is teaching and enjoying her 6 grandchildren. She is an experienced seamstress, a gardener, a baker, and she crafts natural homemade soaps and lotions for her home business, Vintage Soap & Lotion Works.
One of Ms. Reeder's favorite quotes is: “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” Albert Einstein