Our Teachers



Ekaterina Burshtein – Come Play With Us! (Alphabet and Arithmetic), Arithmetic 
Bio Coming Soon!






Nataliya Soboleva – Around The World (Art), Masterpieces of Russian Art

Natalie has always been passionate about art and has enjoyed painting since childhood.  She graduated with honors from Southern Federal University (Rostov-on-Don) with a degree in Graphic Design.  During her years at the university, Natalie simultaneously studied painting at Rostov College of Arts (Grekov).  Later, she enrolled at Stroganov Moscow State Academy of Arts and Industry where she attended multiple drawing and painting workshops.

After moving to California, she obtained an MFA in Illustration at Academy of Art University in San Francisco.  Natalie is very creative, loves working with children, and is excited about the opportunity to share her talents with BRS students.


Evgeny Moldavskiy – Arithmetic II, Mathematics, Chess

Evgeny loves two things:  music and mathematics.  Not being able to chose which one is his favorite, he decided to follow the footsteps of his favorite philosopher Pythagoras whose interests were also mathematics and music, and do both.  Evgeny graduated from Moscow State University of Culture and Arts with a degree in concert performance and cello teacher.  Later, he also received a degree in business management from the Institute of Continuing Professional Education at The Moscow State Technological University. 
His eclectic professional career includes playing in several orchestras, teaching music to children in schools, as well as privately. 



Olga Goryacheva – Russian Language, Russian as a Second Language (RSL), Arithmetic

Olga graduated from the Yaroslav-the-Wise Novgorod State University with a degree in Foreign Languages.  She then continued her studies, graduating with a degree in Linguistics and Translation from the International Academy of Business and New Technology.

Olga is passionate about teaching languages and believes that an individual approach coupled with a variety of imaginative activities and games helps students to better master the material.   




Michelle Tombu – Come Play With Us! (Alphabet and Arithmetic)

Michelle is currently a second-year undergraduate student at UC Berkeley, pursuing a double major in Political Economy and Russian Language & Literature. Her academic interests include writing, economics, history and literature. She has had experience working with children as a summer camp counselor, Saturday Russian school teacher, tutor and nanny. Michelle loves to interact with children and is excited to foster a warm, welcoming and fun atmosphere for her students.





Larisa Vorobeva – Russian Language

Larisa graduated from the Samara State Aerospace University and from Pedagogical Institute Pacific National University (Khabarovsk) with a degree of teacher of higher education.

Larisa spent many years teaching young students of all ages.  She taught computer science, computer graphics, and classes on information technology.  Later on, she worked in her children’s schools as a substitute teacher as well as an after-school program assistant.  In later years, she taught information technology at the Far Eastern State Technical University (Vladivostok).

Larisa immensely enjoys teaching children and is excited to join the teaching staff of BRS.



Rustam Baibikov – Chess, Musical Fairy Tales (3/4)

Rustam is a flutist and a teacher.  After graduating from college in Saratov, he continued his studies at the Moscow Maimonides Academy. After graduation, he played in an orchestra as well as an ensemble and organized his own concert workshops. Additionally, he organized around 700 educational concerts of classical and folk music for preschool children in Moscow. More recently, he has taught music in public and private kindergartens.

In his spare time, Rustam, enjoys a variety of strategic games and plays chess.




Masha Shuster –  Russian for Adults (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced), Russian Literature 

Masha graduated from Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia in Moscow with two degrees in Mathematics and Spanish.  Following graduation, she worked as a business consultant.  Later, she earned a degree in Economics from the Higher School of Economics, National Research University in Moscow.

After the birth of her son, she became fascinated with education and language development and acquisition in children.  Her goal is to find new, engaging and creative ways to teach while exposing each child’s full potential. 


Larisa 2

Larisa Shapiro – Director

Larisa graduated from Cornell University with a degree in Human Development. Her undergraduate work concentrated on the study of the stages of child development; including behavioral, cognitive, social and personality development. She also holds an MS in Design Studies from University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her graduate work focused on the art of the Italian Renaissance and the history of Russian art before and during the reign of Catherine the Great.

Most of her professional experience involved working with families and children. Her recent positions included Director of Education at a school in Wisconsin, and Director of Resettlement at the Jewish Family Service in Michigan.