Third Grade Teacher
Suzannah Gifford

Suzannah graduated from Barnard College at Columbia University with a B.S. in Gender Studies and Psychology. She is currently studying for her M.S. in Childhood General and Special Education at Bank Street College of Education. Originally from Cambridge, MA, Suzannah taught 1st and 3rd grade in New York City before she moved to Portland, ME. Suzannah is thrilled to join the Fiddlehead School community and can’t wait to learn more about her new home state of Maine from her students and their families. Outside of school, Suzannah enjoys picnics at the beach, baking chocolate cookies, and taking care of her many houseplants. She loves Labrador Retrievers and the color yellow, and she can’t whistle.

Third Grade Teacher Assistant
Margaret Thornton
Fourth Grade Teacher
Jennifer Damon

Jen Damon attended the Maine School of Science and Mathematics and studied Human Ecology at College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor before earning her B.A. in education from the University of Maine. She spent the first few years of her teaching career in a traditional public middle school.

After having her own children and being very involved in their district school, she was excited to learn about Fiddlehead—both for herself as a teacher and for her children as students. Jen loves Fiddlehead’s interdisciplinary approach to learning; its sincere appreciation for the individual needs, interests, and strengths of each child; and its commitment to educating the whole child. She joined the teaching team at Fiddlehead in 2016 and feels like she has found the sweet spot with fourth grade.

Outside of school, Jen enjoys reading, educating herself about social issues and history, and walking in the woods and playing in rivers and lakes with her family.

Fourth Grade Assistant Teacher
Val Buteau

Val began studying education while still in high school, after being accepted into a vocational program. She continued on to earn her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. She’s been with Fiddlehead School since 2016, and works for Fiddlehead Center in the summer season. She is known for her warm hugs, kind words, and flexibility within our school, having helped in a few different roles since her start here. She enjoys spending time with family, testing her knowledge at trivia, and cooking.

Fifth Grade Teacher
Hannah Joseph