Baan Dek

Laura Peck


We’ve just loved Laura Peck since she walked in the door. She is calm, patient, and always ready with a smile. We just knew right away that she would be an ideal fit for our Youngest Children’s Community, and we’ve loved getting to know her better in the months she’s been with us. In fact, it seems like she’s been here forever!

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Your background, your interests, your dreams?

I’m originally from Alexandria, Minnesota, a medium sized town in central Minnesota that has so many lakes I cannot name them all. I miss lakes. South Dakota’s water sources are mostly rivers and that makes me a little sad. I moved to Sioux Falls for college.

I attended Augustana College and graduated with degrees in Music and English literature. I live in an apartment on my own with my cat, Willow. She turns one this week and she is one of my best friends (I know that sounds cliché, but it’s true). I look forward to growing old together.

I play oboe and English horn (not the French horn. An English horn is basically a tenor oboe). I currently play in the Augustana college and community orchestra and in the Augustana band. I also play a plethora of other instruments including the ukulele (in fact, I am in a ukulele band called Raised by Badgers). I’ve also started teaching piano lessons to a wonderful 6 year old.

I love being in nature and star gazing is one of my absolute joys in life. I have all of the meteor showers for the year in my calendar on my phone so I won’t forget. Camping and bonfires are another joy of mine. It’s hard to be anything but happy when family or friends are around a fire.

As for dreams. They keep changing. Mostly I just want to be happy in the life I lead.

Q: Now that the hardest question is out of the way: What’s your favorite color?

My favorite stand alone color is green. But my favorite color combination is yellow and gray.

Q: What treats do you always say yes to?

I will always say yes to anything lemon flavored. Not the lemon head type lemon, but lemon bars, lemon cookies, lemon cake, that sort of lemon. Even my favorite yogurt is lemon meringue Greek yogurt.

Q: What’s your favorite type of restaurant to frequent?

I like any restaurant that I can get a nice juicy cheeseburger with sweet potato fries.

Q: Do you have a favorite book? How about a film?

This question is the most difficult for me. One book? I love so many books. Harry Potter is definitely a contender (the entire series is amazing but if I picked one book it would probably be Goblet of Fire). But then there are books like Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close or To Kill a Mockingbird that kind of resonate with my soul in a way. But then what about plays? Waiting for Godot is one of my favorites. I actually saw it on Broadway when Sir Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian Mckellan were performing it. Death of a Salesman is also another play that resonated with me when I read it.

Films. I love films. I go to the movies all the time. Elf is one of my all time favorites and so is Home Alone. But I also like feel good movies and I think my favorite feel good movie is Lars and the Real Girl.

Q: When you close your eyes late at night, and imagine waking up and starting a new adventure: what is that adventure?

Traveling. I’ve had a taste of the world outside the United States, and I want to explore so much more. If living in Scotland ever became a possibility I would absolutely jump at the chance.

Q: What is your dream vacation?

My dream vacation would be to return to Scotland. The highlands in particular. My favorite place i’ve experienced is the Isle of Skye and I would love to return.

Second choice would be taking my mom back to Sweden (she is half Swedish and very proud of her heritage). I’m learning Swedish just in case the opportunity arises.

Q: How do you while away a long winter night?

I love to watch movies or tv series. When i’m not doing that i’m doing crafts, knitting, drinking tea, baking, cooking, playing music, playing with my cat, or reading a book wrapped in a big blanket.

Q: What first appealed to you about Baan Dek?

I really like the calm atmosphere and seeing that everyone is such a family. It is completely different from the child care experiences I’ve had in the past, I knew it would be a good fit for me.

Q: Did you know anything about Montessori before you came to Baan Dek?

I knew absolutely nothing. Then I googled. Then I experienced it. I feel as if I’m still learning every day and will be for a long time to come.

Q: You’re working with the Youngest Children’s Community, children 14 months to 3 years. What appeals to you about this age group?

I love how quickly they are developing, how curious they are about the world around them, and how eager they are to learn.

Q: Were you surprised by anything in the Montessori classroom?

I was surprised by how independent the kids are. They are capable of so much more than I expected out of that age group. They surprise me every day.

Q: What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned from working at Baan Dek?

I have learned that children are far more capable than I ever gave them credit for before.

Q: What’s the best part of your day?

The best part of the day is lunch time. Not because I get to eat, but because I get to interact with the kids a bit more and I learn a lot about them by what foods they bring and how they eat them.

Q: If there’s one thing you could share, what would it be?

“We don’t make mistakes, just happy little accidents.” – Bob Ross

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