Phone: @heathercapps123


Degrees and Certifications:

NCSU - B.A. Psychology Meredith College - Elementary Education Certification and K-12 Reading Certification

Mrs. Heather Capps

Literacy Coach / Intervention Teacher

As a third generation educator, you could say teaching is in her blood. Mrs. Capps has been in the education world since 1999 and at Powell since 2007. Powell is near and dear to her heart; her husband, his siblings, and her children have all attended school here. She has taught K-3 and has experience as Math Coach, Literacy Coach, intervention, and an AIG teacher. Outside of school she spends time attending track meets and baseball games for her boys and chasing an active toddler. Mrs. Capps enjoys outdoor activities and takes a road trip every summer as a family.

"Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning." -Mr. Rogers

My Play-losophy:

Students build social skills, muscular strength, coordination, confidence, and problem solving through playful learning. Our natural tendency as children is to experience the world through play.



Degrees and Certifications:

College of Charleston: Bachelors in Science Psychology and Sociology East Carolina University: Master's in the Art of Teaching (MAT)

Mrs. Megan Hill

Instructional Facilitator

Ms. Hill grew up in Eastern North Carolina, and after obtaining her undergraduate degree in psychology from the College of Charleston, and her graduate degree in teaching from East Carolina University, she moved to Raleigh to begin her teaching career in 2003. She has 20 years of teaching experience in grades Kindergarten through eighth grade, and is coming to Powell from Underwood Elementary, where she most recently held the positions of reading intervention teacher and magnet coordinator. Ms. Hill has worked in magnet schools the majority of her career and is passionate about arts integration and connections to nature. When she’s not at school, you are likely to find her on the greenway, a trail, or a paddleboard. She enjoys reading, music, and spending time outdoors with her family and friends.

My Play-losophy resides in the idea that learning should be fun. Through purposeful play integration, students are able to collaborate, get creative, and take risks in order to engage in critical thinking about content standards. Play not only leads to academic growth, but also helps students grow their social and emotional skills. So, get out there, play, learn, and have some fun!

"It is a happy talent to know how to play." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Phone: @_harristeacher


Degrees and Certifications:

SUNY Buffalo State College - Bachelor of Science in Art Education K-12 SUNY Alfred State College - Associate of Arts in English and Humanities Certified Zentangle Teacher

Mrs. Sarah Harris

Play Integration Curriculum Specialist

Mrs. Harris has taught in North Carolina since 2004 after moving from Buffalo, NY to pursue warmer temperatures and start her career in art education. She began in Johnston County teaching a K-5 art program for seven years. After the birth of her daughters she became a stay at home parent but continued to teach summer programs at Artspace and Art Together in Downtown Raleigh. She followed her daughters to preschool and became a part-time preschool teacher at Arts Together. When they were accepted into Powell, she witnessed the play-based focus on the school community and wanted to be a part of it. She took on the role as Instructional Assistant and has been here ever since.

Mrs. Harris enjoys traveling, reading, and watching movies with her family. Their pup Obi (Obi-Wan D.O.G.) joins the party on the couch. She's usually found drinking coffee and trying out a new art process. She has a passion for exploring materials and teaching others how to play again through art. Mrs. Harris became a certified Zentangle teacher in April 2022. 

My play-losophy:

I believe that learning through play reaches all of the areas in the brain. It's visual, kinetic, auditory, sensory...with the whole body at play learning is reinforced and the knowledge is easier to recall because it's attached to how they experienced it. 

Phone: @CLaurens5


Degrees and Certifications:

The Georgia Institute of Technology - Bachelor of Science in Architecture The Colorado College - Master of Arts in Teaching K-6 Elementary Education

Mrs. Cristen Laurens

Magnet Program Coordinator

Mrs. Laurens came to Powell in 2005, when her oldest daughter began kindergarten as a magnet student. She has been at Powell since then as a magnet parent, teacher and magnet coordinator. Her three daughters went to Powell and graduated from Enloe! Mrs. Laurens brings to Powell over 29 years of education & design experience.

Mrs. Laurens’ passion for education and design is a journey of orchestrated events that have led her from a degree in architecture (The Georgia Institute of Technology) and a master’s in education (The Colorado College) to creating and starting several small businesses. These experiences have transformed her innovative work as the Magnet Coordinator at Powell Center for Play and Ingenuity. Mrs. Laurens enjoys sharing all the wonderful things we do at Powell with our greater community!

When not at Powell, she enjoys spending time with her husband, three daughters, son-in-law and twin grandsons pursuing artistic endeavors, traveling, stand up paddle boarding, hiking with their dogs, gardening, yoga and cooking. You may even be able to spot her at a Hurricanes game! 

My Play-losophy:

Play = Creativity

"Creativity is intelligence having fun" - Albert Einstein 

Phone: @MsMiller211


Degrees and Certifications:

Longwood University- Bachelor of Science: Elementary Education PreK-6 Longwood University- Master of Science: Special Education K-12

Ms. Amanda Miller

Intervention Team Facilitator/Intervention Teacher

Ms. Miller grew up in Pilot Mountain, NC but moved around Virginia and North Carolina throughout middle and high school. She went to college at Longwood University in Farmville, VA and received her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and her graduate degree in Special Education. Ms. Miller has been teaching for several years. Throughout her time in school she always had teachers that never gave up on her and pushed her to always be better. These teachers had a huge part in her decision of becoming a teacher and wanting to help students be successful in their own lives. In Ms. Miller's free time she likes to spend time with her family, play with her Pug, Kensly, explore Raleigh, travel, and watch Harry Potter. She looks forward to spending time with your child and showing them their worth and potential here at Powell!

My Play-losophy: 

I believe that play contributes to a huge part of a child's personal growth and social and emotional well being. Allowing students to play while learning allows them to make connections and easily retain the information while having fun. Having games and challenges in the classroom allows the students to use critical thinking skills, lets them think outside the box, and allows them to connect to other peers in a different way than they normally would. 

Phone: @Powell_AIG


Degrees and Certifications:

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - B.A. in Music & History The University of Texas at Austin - M.Ed in Curriculum & Instruction

Ms. Ann Poisson


Ms. Poisson grew up in St. Petersburg, Florida and moved to NC to attend UNC-Chapel Hill (go Heels!). She has been working in education in a variety of roles since 2001. She started her teaching career in Houston, Texas as a Teach for America corps member. After teaching there for three years, she moved to Austin to pursue a masters degree in Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Texas, where she also supervised student teachers and worked as a graduate teaching assistant. After 5 years in the Texas heat, Ms. Poisson decided that she missed North Carolina, so she moved to Raleigh in 2006 and taught fourth grade at Powell. During this time, she had the great honor of teaching amazing students and being named the 2008 Wake County Teacher of the Year. Since then, she has also worked at Walnut Creek Elementary and Millbrook Elementary schools, coached teachers through Teach for America-Eastern North Carolina, and taught Discovery classes for 3- and 4-year olds at Hudson Memorial Preschool. Ms. Poisson is thrilled to return "home" to Powell as the AIG teacher! She lives in Raleigh with her two boys and her husband. They care for small menagerie of one cat (Littlefoot), one dog (Biscuit), three chickens (Mohawk, Chicken, and The Other Chicken), vermicomposting worms, and two large freshwater aquariums that house a fish named Gus, some shrimp, snails, aquatic plants, and several species of algae. Ms. Poisson loves to garden, cook, play the flute, and play outside with her kids.

"The creation of something new is not accomplished by intellect but by the play instinct." - Carl Jung

My Play-losophy:

Play gives us the freedom and space to use what we know to think outside of the box, be innovative, and pursue our natural curiosity. Plus, it's fun!!