The Annunciation Greek School employs various instructors who have native Greek language skills and are proficient instructors. For the 2019-20 academic year, the following instructors will be teaching at the school:
Eleftheria Arapoglou is a “young” member of the Annunciation community as she and her family moved from Thessaloniki, Greece, to Davis, California, only three years ago. Eleftheria’s involvement with Annunciation Greek School sprang from her passion for her native tongue and her strong commitment to bilingual/bicultural education. The community at Annunciation has made Eleftheria and her family feel at home in California! Eleftheria teaches American literature and culture courses at the University of California at Davis. Her academic record includes five edited volumes in the fields of cultural and literary studies, the monograph A Bridge over the Balkans: Demetra Vaka Brown and the Tradition of “Women’s Orients,” and numerous journal articles and conference papers in the fields of transnational American studies, ethnic studies, and cultural geography.
Γειά σας! My name is Vasiliki Kapetanoudi Kotsiopulou. I was born and raised in Germany by immigrant Greek parents and attended both German and Greek School every day. These have been the two most formative experiences in my life. Bilingualism and biculturalism have changed the way I see the world and interact with those around me: I am eager to learn and keep an open mind about my surroundings. While in Germany, I pursued a degree in Physical Therapy. Later, I moved to Greece and worked in a preschool environment as well as a physical therapist. Afterwards, I pursued a carrier as an accountant for a German company in Greece until relocating to the US. Here, I started a family and decided to stay at home to raise my two sons. After they started school I decided to go back to work. I have worked as an Instructional Aid at the Kindergarten level for Rocklin Academy in Rocklin for English-speaking students. At the same time, I started working for Greek School in Sacramento! To further my education and skills, I enrolled in an online program for teaching modern Greek as a second language, and obtained the certificate, “Routes in Teaching Modern Greek” (Διαδρομές), through Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, in Greece. My personal motto is to “see through my students’ eyes,” so as to better understand them, and help make learning easy, fun, and exciting. Being Greek, I very much enjoy interacting with my students and sharing my love of the Greek language, history and culture. This will be my fifth year teaching at the Annunciation Greek School, and I look forward to yet another successful and fun year with our Greek students. Καλή και δημιουργική χρονιά!!!
ORESTIS KOLETSOS was born in Paris and after a few years moved with his family back to Athens. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from the University of Athens, and has conducted research for the European Union under the title “The Role of Women in Significant Fishing Areas”. He is a native Greek speaker, and he is fluent in English and French, as he has close ties with both France and the U.S. Orestis is co-owner of Ekkremes Publications, his family’s book publishing company located in Athens, and publishes books on ancient and contemporary philosophy, literature, essays and biographies. Here he has done everything from consultation, editing, marketing, promotion, organizing panels and book fairs in Athens and Thessaloniki. His multi-language skills are a must in this work field. For the past 17 years, Orestis has been working as a professional musician, having started playing the bouzouki at the age of 15. He has performed with important composers and singers in concerts and for television and radio programs. Orestis is an accomplished lyricist and songwriter and has performed his own songs for television and radio. In December, 2013, Orestis released his own personal CD, collaborating with acclaimed singers. This CD, entitled “Me Plimirizei Fos,” is currently being broadcast on radio stations throughout Greece. He is member of the trio “Hohlax” which has toured both Cyprus and California five times. The trio performs for universities, formal concerts, house concerts, dance events, Greek festivals and private parties. Orestis holds lectures on Greek music during these tours in the States. Orestis has been offering private bouzouki lessons for kids and adults for the last 8 years.He is the father of a little girl whom he and his wife are raising to be bilingual.
Jaime Smith has spent the last 17 years immersing herself in Greek culture, language and music. After receiving a Bachelors degree in Violin Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston in 1998, she moved to Greece as the first musician to be awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study the traditional music of the country. She has taught music in after school programs as well as violin in schools and homes throughout Athens. Jaime has found that the best way for children to get close to a language is through songs and was frequently invited to preschools in Athens to sing and teach children Greek songs. Her knowledge of Greek allows her to easily interact with her students. In addition to teaching, Jaime has performed throughout Greece and Cyprus with renowned artists. She has performed, and been interviewed, for Greek and Cypriot television and radio. In 2007, she formed the Greek music trio Hohlax which has performed throughout California on multiple occasions. Jaime is married to Orestis Koletsas, a native Greek. They have one child, Christina, who they are raising to be bilingual. Jaime is very excited to be a part of the team at the Greek School at the Annunciation this year.
My name is Toula Zioga-Delis. I was born and raised in Thessaloniki, Northern Greece. I am a graduate of Aristotle University in Thessaloniki, and hold a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics. While I was pursuing my degree, I would offer private lessons in Mathematics to students of all ages. I worked as a tutor for seven years, and I must confess that my enthusiasm inspired my students. I also attended several teacher seminars that helped me improve my teaching approach and methodology. Eventually, I pursued a career in the sales department of a pharmaceutical company, where I was employed for five years, up to the moment that I got married and relocated to California. Ever since my move, I have been actively involved in the life and activities of the Greek community of Sacramento–teaching Sunday school for six years, working as a teacher assistant for Rocklin Academy, and teaching at the Annunciation Greek School for the last three years. Because I wish to keep up-to-date with the latest in teaching methodologies, in the school year 2014-2015, I successfully completed a long-distance teacher training program offered by Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, which is called “Diadromes/Routes in Teaching Modern Greek.” “Diadromes” is co-financed by the European Union and implemented by the Centre for the Greek Language. I look forward to a constructive and exciting school year, working closely with my students and their families.
Katerina Lagos is Professor of History and Director of the Hellenic Studies Program at California State University, Sacramento. I was born and raised in Seattle, Washington and came to Sacramento after I was hired at Sac State. I teach modern Greek history and culture, along with other courses in the History Department. My academic record includes various articles and book chapters, and I am currently editing a volume on the Greek Junta dictatorship, 1967-74, as well as a monograph on the Metaxas dictatorship and Greek Jewry, 1936-41.
Nikoletta Kabatza was born and raised in Greece, in the south suburbs of Athens. She completed her Bachelor’s in Education, with specialty in Philology, at National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. She is also in a Master’s program in Education at Sacramento State University and is currently completing her thesis.
Dr. Nikolaos Lazaridis is Professor of Ancient Mediterranean History at California State University, Sacramento. He is one of the very few Greek Egyptologists. He left Greece in 1996 to study Egyptology at the American University in Cairo and Oxford University, and later became a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Historical, Literary and Cultural Studies at Radboud University of Nijmegen. His doctoral dissertation, Wisdom in loose form: The language of proverbs in Egyptian and Greek collections of the Hellenistic and Roman periods, was published by Brill Publishers in 2007. In addition, Dr. Lazaridis has authored numerous articles on ancient Egyptian literature, epigraphy, and religion. He has recently completed two monographs: “Let me have Your Majesty hear a marvel”: Aspects of Narrative Writing in Ancient Egypt, and North Kharga Oasis Survey, vol. 2: The Darb Ayn Amur, co-authored with Dr. Salima Ikram, and Dr. Leslie-Anne Warden Anderson.