Serving children 15 months through 8th grade.
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Sea Pines Montessori Academy has been educating children for over 45 years. South Carolina's original Montessori preschool, we currently serve children 15 months to 8th grade. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina's first and only Montessori school.
An internationally recognized private school, Sea Pines Montessori Academy is dedicated to developing the whole child – socially, emotionally, and academically.
Our teachers and facility are accredited and highly qualified.
In my 14 some years that I was at Sea Pines Montessori Academy, I came to realize that the Montessori curriculum is the best method of education for primary and secondary age students. Coming into the public school environment I've learned to become self-motivated, I've learned to manage my time more effectively than my peers, and I've become a life-long learner that is passionate about learning just for the sake of becoming a better intellect.
“We have been at Sea Pines Montessori since 1996...We have always felt there is no better or safer place for our children to attend school...Our children have learned how to respect themselves and others. They have learned to love learning. They will absolutely be better people because of the educational experiences and life lessons they have had at Sea Pines Montessori.”
Montessori accredited teachers use advanced educational techniques that are proven to work. Traditional classrooms are catching on. Our methods work.
Today's child development experts know that small group settings and community awareness encourage a healthy sense of self and are vital to meeting the social and educational needs of a child.
We chose SPMA for our son after signs of him becoming overwhelmed at a larger school. This school is a "family unit"- all teachers and staff know my son's name and face, parent's full names, and even approved pick-up personnel. That is important to us as parents!
" ...every other education method is based on an abstract model of the child and then derives educational models from that. Maria Montessori, a doctor and researcher, went the other way around: she experimented with methods and, based on the results, built up a theory of the child, which she then tested and refined through experiment." Pascal-Emmanuel Gorby, Forbes
"...My son wakes up everyday looking forward to his day at school. I would definitely recommend this school to everyone."
We know differently. This video explains why an accredited Montessori environment helps children thrive, in school and life. No threats of pop
Standardized testing and test prep are offered throughout the year.
The American Montessori Society sets high standards for qualifying as a member school. Our school is peer-reviewed, ensuring teaching principles and standards adhere to the Montessori philosophy of educating the whole child, socially, emotionally, and intellectually.
Overseen by the National Association of Independent Schools, the Southern Association of Independent Schools accreditation demonstrates a dedication to highest standards of education and ongoing assessment and self-evaluation for continual improvement.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accreditation ensures that your child receives full credit for classes taken when transferring to high school. This rigorous certification took almost two years of assessments and applications to receive.
Ashley Alcock is the Lower Elementary Teacher.
She is dedicated to guiding children to become respectful, responsible, and well-educated individuals that are inspired to help make the world a better place.
Two of her passions that the children especially enjoy are Crafting and Singing. Ashley finds that crafting projects spur creativity and artwork, which makes learning hands-on and relevant – not to mention fun! She finds singing to be useful as a learning tool and helps to soothe the soul.
Mrs. Cotter is the Head of School for Sea Pines Montessori Academy. She is dedicated to advancing the academic success, social and emotional development, and independence of each student at SPMA.
Melinda enjoys reading, creative writing, and art, and believes that these activities provide a foundation for literacy. An outdoors enthusiast, Melinda can be found hiking a mountain trail, playing on the beach with her German shepherd, Hampton, or visiting new parks/nature preserves in her travels.
“When children come into contact with nature, they reveal their strength.” – Maria Montessori
Read Melinda’s Head of School Welcome here.
Ms. Gort is the Purple Room’s Assistant Teacher and is dedicated to inspiring her students to love learning. She is passionate about helping her students develop and achieve practical life goals.
Her qualifications include:
Jordan loves reading books with her nephew and creating new works and crafts for the classroom.
Ms. Hinely is the Lower Elementary Assistant Teacher. Anne is dedicated to fostering independence, confidence, compassion, and a love of learning within each child.
Her qualifications include:
Ms. Hinely moved into the Lower Elementary Program to expand her knowledge and practice of the Montessori Method in 2013.
Anne has a passion for missions work, especially in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. She works there every summer with children at The Valentine Children’s Home, and serves on the board of The Valentine Project.
Ashley Schilling is the Lead Teacher in the Blue Room. She is dedicated to opening the hearts and minds of young children.
Her qualifications include:
Ms. Schilling enjoys spending time with her family. Her husband, son, and two rescue dogs are eagerly anticipating the arrival of her daughter, due in February of 2016. She often volunteers at the local animal shelters.
Dean St. Hillaire is a music teacher at SPMA and dedicated to seeing more children involved in the arts.
Passionate about teaching music to kids, Dean is also a very successful local musician and works with some of the area’s top artists.
He is a graduate of Greenville Secondary School.
Dr. Baird is the Lead Middle School Teacher at Sea Pines Montessori Academy.
She is dedicated to adolescent education, curriculum development, Montessori research, and community outreach.
Dr. Baird holds a Doctorate in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology and was a Research Scientist for over 10 years with more than 8 publications in top scientific journals including Nature and Science.
A middle school teacher since 2007, Dr. Baird also taught for two years at the Elementary level.
In addition, Dr. Baird is a musician and sings in the church choir. She also plays guitar, piano, percussion, and clarinet for the community.
Her interest in STEAM is an asset to her students. STEAM: arts and their relation to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics–trained by leading artists from around South Carolina, including Mary Edna Fraser for the inclusion of art with the study of the Lowcountry ecosystem.
More about Dr. Baird at www.sarahwbaird.com
Ms. Comeau is the Assistant Preprimary Teacher and is dedicated to encouraging children to express their creativity through all avenues of learning.
She holds the following qualifications:
With experience in both public and private schools systems, Ms. Comeau excels at guiding students through their work day.
She is also a registered yoga teacher who hopes to bring kids yoga to SPMA next year!
Beth McCune is a Lower Elementary Teacher and is dedicated to educating the whole child by helping each child gain independence, self-confidence, and an awareness of the importance of their role in a building a peaceful, cooperative community.
Beth enjoys spending time out in nature with her family, with a passion for the beach and kayaking local waters. She is passionate about sharing with her students the importance of preserving our island.
You can find Beth frequently researching new lesson ideas and ways to make learning more beautiful.
With over 17 years teaching experience, Kerry has been a valued member of the faculty at Sea Pines Montessori Academy since 2004.
Kerry is the Lead Infant/Toddler Teacher in the Light Green Room and is dedicated to fostering each child’s unique attributes while teaching them how to work as part of a community of peers.
Her qualifications include:
Kerry loves the outdoors and exercise. She encourages children to learn through nature and start a love for an active lifestyle.
Her family is a top priority. Learning to love and nurture the different personalities that her own children have guides her in helping the families she works with to understand and nurture the personalities of the children she has been entrusted to guide.
Mrs. Krimm is the General Music Teacher & Enrichment Coordinator for Sea Pines Montessori Academy. In addition, she teaches Suzuki Violin. Joy is dedicated to fostering musical growth and appreciation for the arts in her students.
Her qualifications include:
Personally, Mrs. Krimm enjoys baking, cooking, crafting, and dancing. She is also passionate about music history.
At Sea Pines Montessori Academy, we focus on educating the whole child. From cross-country to Spanish, our students participate in fun, engaging, productive extracurriculars. Sports, games, and outdoor time help children learn.
Sea Pines Montessori Academy is a private, non-profit school internationally recognized for promoting a healthy social atmosphere and recruiting stellar staff. Students consistently perform grade-levels ahead of traditionally-schooled peers. We offer an environment where students can develop the social and educational skills they need to excel in high school, college, and beyond.
The percentages above reflect the (M.S.) Middle School students.
Our Early Childhood Program sets the groundwork for instilling a love of learning in children. We foster independence, good manners, play, and personal and community growth. Accepting children 15 months to 6 years. (12 month program pending)
A natural continuation of our Early Childhood Programs, the SPMA Elementary program offers an award-winning educational model. The Lower Elementary serves ages 6-9 and the Upper Elementary serves ages 9-12.
A socially appropriate community led by the internationally recognized Dr. Baird. The SPMA Middle School offers an engaging social atmosphere and and high school preparatory environment that meets and exceeds the needs of students ages 12-15.
Sea Pines Montessori Academy offers a unique, challenging, and nurturing social atmosphere.
If you’re searching for a healthy, safe, and social school with rigorous academic standards, the SPMA environment could be the right fit for your child. As you explore your school options, this checklist is helpful for interviewing schools in an effort to find the best fit for your family.
The most important thing you can do when interviewing schools is to sit in the classroom. Spend 30 minutes absorbing the environment that your child will spend the next year in. Talk to the teacher and introduce yourself to the students.
We're confident your family will love all that Sea Pines Montessori Academy has to offer.
We're happy to answer any questions. Contact Sea Pines Montessori Academy at (843) 785-2534 of email office (at) spma.com.