Ms. Estelles is first generation Cuban American born in Brooklyn, New York.
She lived most of her life in the north until her family moved to Miami in 1986. Ms. Estelles graduated from Coral Gables Senior High School and then went on to study Elementary Education at Florida International University, where she graduated with high honors.
While she was teaching, Ms. Estelles continued her educational journey at FIU and obtained a master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
Shortly after that, she became a National Board-Certified Teacher.
Ms. Estelles is the mother of two boys, Tommy and Michael.
Michael, her youngest one just turned 18 and Tommy the eldest is 25. Even though becoming a mom made Ms. Estelles more knowledgeable about working with children, it was her son Tommy, who has special needs, that really instilled that passion to make a positive impact in her students’ lives. Not only does she strive to teach her students all of the academic materials which they need to master and how to be critical thinkers, most importantly she teaches them about being kind to one another and guides them towards becoming “Empathetic Citizens”, persons who help those in need and show compassion and understanding.
Lourdes has been teaching for over twenty-five years, 17 of them right here at Hadley. She has been Grade Level Chair as well as being elected Teacher of the Year in 2011. Ms. Estelles has experience with many grade levels and students with mixed abilities. She has enjoyed teaching all the classes that she has taught but being a mother of a child with Autism has made her experience teaching students with special needs very special. It has given her first-hand knowledge of different methods and modalities to reach a child and has also created a special bond with her students’ families. She is always very eager to work with them as a team, not only as a teacher but as a concerned parent who wants the best for their child.