HuckleBerry Teachers - our new SIMI Location!


HuckleBerry Center for Creative Learning Instructors include these highly qualified professionals.  Please feel free to contact any of them to ask them questions about their classes and teaching styles.

Diane Pusateri
BS Business Administration

Diane Pusateri is our Site Administrator.


Being a homeschool parent/teacher to my two children was the best part of my career.  Nothing was more exciting than empowering my children to discover their talents and work through academic struggles.  As adults, they think out of the box and are very faceted due to the vast array of opportunities and individualized education available in the homeschool community.


My educational background consists of a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from CA State University, Northridge.  My work experiences have carried me from Internal Audit positions in the Banking and Medical industry to recreation with the City of Oxnard as Grant Assistant, Recreation Leader, and Senior Services Excursion Coordinator.  During tax season, I am a Site Manager for the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program staffed by volunteers providing free tax preparation to low income residents in Ventura County.


I look forward to assisting you in providing a safe, encouraging, and fun learning environment for your children.

Debra Baltau
AS  Child Development
Child Development, Teacher Level

While attending Keene State College in New Hampshire, majoring in Information Studies, still in the undergradute program, I moved back home to Sunny California! My husband and I met, married and began our family. A few years later I wanted to complete my education, but chose a different major, Early Childhood.


I Earned my Associate in Science Degree in Child Development from Moorpark College and completed certification for the State of California Child Development Permit, Teacher level. When my oldest was in Pre-Kindergarten, I began teaching in Early Childhood at a private school in Thousand Oaks. For 13 amazing years I taught, and took at least 9 units of CEU (Continuing Education Units) every year. The experience gained through those years has helped me develop my love and passion for teaching!    I created a MakerSpace at the iLead Design Studio and taught and managed that for a year, and then joined HuckleBerry and brought MakerSpace classes to Huck!  I'm returning to my first love - early childhood - by setting up Huck's Young Learners program.   I hope to see your kids there!


Michael Belson
BA English, teaching credential

I have always loved literature and stories. In 2002, I went to UC Berkeley to get my English degree, and while tutoring my best friend in algebra, I discovered something else I love: teaching. I soon joined Teach for America and flew off to New York City where I taught language arts for seven years, two in the South Bronx and five with the incredible Uncommon Schools in Brooklyn. I also earned my master’s degree in education from Pace University.   But I found that the classroom in public schools is not where I can do my best work.   The large class sizes prevent the type of individualized attention I like to bring to my students.  My approach has always been to figure out where each student is, and then progress from there.   It takes more time, but it's so much more meaningful!  Since coming home to Southern California in 2012, I have organically grown my own tutoring business, continually refining my pedagogy running a variety of bootcamps and bookclubs and tutoring 1-on-1 in my three favorite subjects: reading, writing, and math. 

Casandra Carrettini
Mary Anne DeGeeter
BA Child Development

I have been working with young children for most of my life! I started babysitting at a young age and fell in love working with young children. I started out as a preschool teacher, then went on to be a Special Education Assistant, and then became a teacher.  I have also taught in private schools. I have my Bachelor’s Degree in Child Development and my CA Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, both from CSUN.  I also taught Health Education through a Health Insurance Company for about four years. I homeschooled my son 2 years ago and learned all about the homeschool community, so I am excited to be teaching at HuckleBerry!! I love teaching children and see that light bulb go off in their little brains when they get a concept!  How refreshing it is to share HuckleBerry's philosophy of meeting a child where they are.   It is an amazing experience to instill learning into the minds of young children! I look forward to getting to know you and your children!

Steve Yoshinaga, PhD. 
PhD Molecular Science

Dr. Steve Yoshinaga has been teaching molecular science to homeschoolers for over 15 years and also homeschooled his own daughter. He brings real world experience to his science teaching, as his scientific research has helped us better understand how our body's cells work. He has published in the best scientific journals in the world. He wants his students to join him in exploring the joys of science.