Roaring Mouse was founded by Lassie Webster, who envisioned a place where all people could learn about the joy, freedom and power of embracing the creative spirit. A cornerstone of our philosophy is the link between creativity and play. Our studio provides connected art and play areas which allow for a free flow of ideas, from play to art, and art to play. Through creative exploration, we encourage our students to follow their thoughts and curiosities into other forms of expression, and to experiment with combining ideas in new ways.
At Roaring Mouse, we respect and understand different learning styles, and support the unique process and growth of each student. Our mission is to provide opportunities to develop self confidence and awareness through artistic and creative experiences, and to enhance communication and understanding between people. All of the teachers at Roaring Mouse are committed to giving our students the best chance to discover and develop their own creative potential and to find ways to share those gifts with the world.
Lassie Webster, Founder and Director
Lassie has devoted her life to working with people of all ages in the creative arts. In addition to developing and leading several programs in Seattle and California, Lassie has acted as a consultant to parents, teachers, counselors, and school districts for her expertise in the arts and social emotional development. Lassie received her training at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, where she studied with Anna Deveare Smith. She went on to study the visual arts, music, dance, and childhood development, and has her B.A. in Arts and Literature from Antioch University. She taught an arts- and social-emotional development-based kindergarten program in the Seattle Public Schools for 19 years, and opened Roaring Mouse Creative Arts Studio in 1997.
Cheryl Carder, Program Director and Teacher
Cheryl has spent her years at Roaring Mouse developing and refining the early childhood classes, creating a comprehensive program that is both supportive and exciting to her young students. She is one of those rare teachers who magically creates a learning environment that fosters a sense of adventure, cooperation, love and creativity. In recent years, Cheryl has turned her attention to developing new classes for older students, all with the same thoughtful approach. Like her early childhood art classes, these classes give her students an opportunity to continue to explore and develop their creative interests. In addition to her work at Roaring Mouse, Cheryl has spent several years studying the Montessori philosophy, as well as emergent curriculum at North Seattle Community College. She has focused her studies on building communication skills and teaching art and drama to young children. Cheryl is the mother of one inspiring daughter, Ellie. Being at Roaring Mouse has opened up another form of facilitating children’s needs and skill building for Cheryl and she looks forward to continuing to provide a valuable, growing experience for all.
Darrah Parker, Managing Director
Having spent most of her life immersed in the world of art, theatre, and music, few things bring Darrah more joy than fostering creativity in the next generation. She has extensive experience working both in front and behind the scenes of arts management. She has a BFA in Theatre from the University of Florida and an MA in Theatre Education from Emerson College. She has taught for Seattle Children's Theatre and Youth Theatre Northwest as well as managed programs for the EMP (now MoPOP). Most recently, she was the Program Manager at Seattle ReCreative where she oversaw programs for adults, children, and families.
Darrah has always felt most at home around artists and creative people. Her mom and brother both teach art, her grandfather created found object sculptures, and her husband is a musician. She herself has dabbled in drawing and painting, and in recent years has found her artistic home as a family photographer.
Darrah lives in Ravenna with her husband and two daughters. She is thrilled to be a part of the Roaring Mouse family.
Jessica Lord, Education Director and Teacher
Jessica is an early childhood educator with over 15 years experience working with diverse populations of young children and families. Her Reggio-inspired classes are always child-centered, with a strong emphasis on the creative process, child development and, of course, good old-fashioned silly fun! In addition to art, Jessica also teaches Nurturing Pathways® Creative Dance and hosts Pop-Up Adventure Playgrounds in the community. She lives in Broadview with her husband and two young children.
Allison Agostinelli, Teacher
Allison is a practicing local artist and teacher who is constantly learning and sharing her love of meaningful creative play. Allison’s goal is for children to feel safe, welcome, comfortable and confident expressing themselves while developing their social emotional skills. A graduate of Cornish College of the Arts with studies that included painting, printmaking, and sculpture, Allison continues to expand her skill set in craft. Combined with her years of work in childcare she is always inspired by observing and connecting with her students. It is these connections that stimulate discovery, resilience, and communication.
Ellie Carder-Landers, Teacher
Ellie has been part of the Roaring Mouse family since she was a preschooler herself. She has assisted in several of RM’s camps and classes over the years, training with one of the best, her mom, Cheryl Carder. In addition to running the birthday parties on the weekends, she assists in several other classes as well. She has a lot of fun working at the “Mouse” and thinks it’s really cool getting to work with kids and art, two things she loves! Ellie is currently a student at Shoreline Community College.
Karen Knutson, Accounts Manager
Karen has been with Roaring Mouse since 1999. She loves her role in connecting children and families with our teachers and programs. Being part of the Roaring Mouse community has encouraged her to remain creative: she makes semi-precious stone jewelry, which she sells at local craft fairs. Karen grew up in Tacoma and studied English Literature at the University of Washington. She has two beautiful daughters, Marit and Anna, who are both in graduate school. Karen and her husband recently moved to Bellingham, and we’re thrilled that she is continuing to work with us remotely.
Shirley Litman, Teacher
Shirley is a mixed-media artist. She was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where she studied Architecture, Graphic design, Aesthetics and Creativity, Pottery and Sculpture. Some of her mediums include acrylic painting, collage, clay, stained glass.
Enthusiastic about sharing her passion for the arts, she has travelled around South America and the US. She worked as a “Child and Youth adviser” in Bolivia, leading creative activities for children and adults. In Florida, she worked as an art specialist and organized art shows and educational events for non-profit organizations. She enjoys working with other people in collaborative art fundraisers and visiting museums where she can attend stimulating lectures and courses. Some of her hobbies include going to concerts, going for long walks, and spending time with friends and family.