About Sundrops

Who We Are

Sundrops Montessori is a private Montessori school dedicated to following the principles presented by Maria Montessori in her lifetime work as a child educator.

Our Story

Sundrops Montessori Story

In 1998, under the direction of Shannon Smith, Sundrops Montessori opened its doors with nine children ages 18 months to 5 years old. Since then Sundrops has expanded to four campuses with programs currently serving children from 6 weeks to 15 years. Our focus is to create a peaceful environment sensitive to the physical, educational and emotional needs of the children.

Under the guidance of Sundrops’ certified Montessori staff, children receive individualized learning in a creative and nurturing environment.  Our multi-aged classroom communities allow children to help teach and learn from one another, mutually benefiting all ages.

The Montessori classroom and materials are carefully designed and arranged to incorporate all five senses in the learning experience.  Classroom materials captivate children from both a tactile and sensorial perspective, which motivates them to learn complex concepts as their education progresses.  This unique approach gives children confidence and a genuine love of learning.

THE SUNDROPS VISION

OUR MISSION

At Sundrops, we strive to educate by nurturing each child’s unique social, emotional, and cognitive development needs.

The Montessori classroom and materials are carefully designed and arranged to incorporate all five senses in the learning experience. Classroom materials captivate children from both a tactile and sensorial perspective, which motivates them to learn complex concepts as their education progresses. This unique approach gives children confidence and genuine love of learning.

 

School Administrators

Shannon Smith

Founder/Director

Jeanie Douglas

Parent/Educational Support

Tammy Gable

Queen of the Coin

Kejal Amin

Admissions Director

Ms. Amanda

Office Administrator
Bridge Campus

Bio

“Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

Amanda moved to Charleston in 2006 for a change of pace, and quickly connected to the enlightened world of Montessori. She started out as a substitute teacher at the Beach Campus and later moved to East Cooper Montessori Charter School, where she taught lower and upper elementary for four years.

Ms. Lindsay

Office Administrator
Palmetto Campus

Bio

Lindsay Trotta began her journey with Sundrops in 2007. She fell in love with the Montessori Methodology. After being a teacher’s assistant for a couple years, she decided to get her AMS Montessori Primary (3-6) Training. She taught as a Primary Teacher for 12 years. Ten of those years were at the Palmetto Campus. In 2020, during the beginning of the Covid pandemic, she was given the opportunity to take over Sundrops Montessori – Palmetto Campus as Director. She enjoys spending time with her family: her husband, daughter (Josephine, 4) and her 2 dogs. When she isn’t at school; she is working in the garden with her daughter, cooking wholesome meals, listening to music, or reading books.

Ms. Mary Margaret

Director
Daniel Island Campus

Bio

Mary Margaret holds a Primary diploma from the Association Montessori Internationale and an Med in Montessori Education from Loyola University in Maryland. She has previously taught at Manor Montessori in Potomac, MD; Charles Towne Montessori in West Ashley; and Casa dei Montessori in Nashville. She is thrilled to be part of the Sundrops family!

Mr. Zak

Director
Mezzo Farm School

Bio

My name is Zak Oberrath and I have been living in the Charleston area for over 20 years and teaching Montessori for 17 of those.  Trained in lower, upper and secondary Montessori, I started the upper elementary program and the adolescent program at East Cooper Montessori Charter School.  Sundrops eagerly wanted to start an adolescent program and in 2017 we began the Mezzo Montessori program which covers grades 7-9.  

My beliefs in the importance of connecting with nature and the outdoors, bleeds from my personal life into school.  We backpack, camp, ski and explore the world.  When I am not at school, I spend time playing volleyball and tennis, strumming the guitar or traveling abroad.  Nothing makes me happier than to be exploring a new part of the world and just wandering around.

My philosophy can be summed up by a Theodore Roosevelt quote.  “Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take a place wherever you are and be somebody; get action.”

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Testimonials

What Parents are Saying

Throughout my years as a parent I have discovered there are very few comforts which can compare to the knowledge that your child is in a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment, one which not only educates, but encourages free thought and creativity. Sundrops is one such environment. From the moment my children walk in the door they are greeted with welcoming faces and a thoughtful and beautiful space in which to learn. The teachers and administration genuinely care for every child in their charge and interact with them as unique individuals instead of as names on a roster. Parents are encouraged to keep an open line of communication with teachers.

Alexandria

Both my son and my daughter attend Sundrops. My daughter has been there since she was a baby and my son since he was three. They have developed incredible, trusting relationships with their teachers and classmates. Not only are they learning, they’re clearly cultivating a curiosity and lifetime love of learning. Both my kids are excited to go to school in the morning. For me, that’s the biggest indicator that wonderful things are happening at Sundrops. I’m happy that my family is a part of it.

Molly

Both of my children have been at Sundrops since they were 12 weeks old and since then Sundrops has continuously met and exceeded our expectations in every way.  Initially I could have cared less about Montessori and was sold based on Nido (6 weeks to 16 months). Now, after seeing how the system works in practice along with the excellent guidance of the staff, I feel lucky to have stumbled upon the best choice for my children to develop into happy, self-driven, creative adults. I cannot recommend Sundrops enough.

Ben