MOUNT PLEASANT, SC (WCBD) –The mission of Sundrops Montessori is to awaken a child’s natural desire to learn in an environment where trust, respect, responsibility, community and cooperation flourish.
It’s easy to see why students and parents feel at home here at Sundrops Montessori and are excited about the educational opportunities here.
The private school offers an individualized, creative, and nurturing learning environment.
“I think it’s a cool school because everybody can integrate. They can go from class to class, they can come visit another space, there is freedom of movement and they get to follow their passion,” said Shannon Smith, the school’s founder and director of education.
Sundrops Montessori opened in 19-98 with eight children and has since expanded to three campuses with programs serving children from 6 weeks to sixth grade..
the school has more than 300 students.
Students learn through an integrated curriculum, where language, math, global cultures, foreign language, music and art are part of every day.
Smith says say their focus is to create an environment sensitive to the physical, educational and emotional needs of the children. “It’s about respect and honor and letting them grow at their own pace but having the material available so they can do just that they’re not just limited to learning. You have children sometimes at three or four that are already reading at a 1st or 2nd grade level, so we want to be able to encourage those strengths, and help build up whatever their weaknesses may be.”
Half of the school’s employees are parents whose children attend the school. Their lead upper elementary teacher was once an attorney but left that profession for the Montessori experience here.
Shannon Marchell, lead upper elementary teacher. “It’s a family environment, we all feel a lot of love and acceptance here,” said Marchell. “We’re learning but we’re also educating the whole child. They’re learning about the world, and they’re also learning about themselves and how to be good citizens and how to care for one another. It’s just a really wonderful place.”
Along with special programs, students also have access to a brazilian art form.
Students from other countries are happy to have the Sundrops educational experience. “It’s a really awesome school and we have wonderful teachers,” said 5th grade student Akosua Yeboah.”I’m learning new stuff that I didn’t learn when I was in Ghana and I think it will help me in the future. When I came here I did not know English but now I feel like I’m an English master because my teachers have helped me.”
Coming up Friday on News 2 Today, we’ll present Sundrops Montessori with our Cool School Award.
We want to hear about the good things that are going on at your school, just send an email to Octavia at firstname.lastname@example.org.