Islands' Sounder


Orcas Montessori School celebrates 25 years

April 16, 2013 · 9:01 AM

Celebrate with Orcas Montessori on May 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the annual Spring Auction and Beer and Wine Tasting Event – this year being held at the Island Hoppin’ Brewery. The evening will include a live auction, music by Corey Wiscomb and Robb Eagle and wine from the Monticello Vineyards. They’ll also have beer tasting and food made by local chefs and bakers. Tickets are $25 for the auction and party plus an optional $10 for the beer or wine tasting. Tickets can be purchased at Darvill’s Bookstore, the brewery or by calling the school at 376-5350.

After co-leading a Montessori playgroup with Kaya Jacolev, founder Moriah Armstrong opened the doors of Orcas Montessori in October 1987 to a bustling group of 10 children. Having received her Montessori certification, Armstrong served as both the class guide and director and the Fralick family hosted the school in their own home. Armstrong recruited friends and family, including her husband Daniel, who built many of the original materials, tables, shelves, and even some of the basic sensorial and math materials like the Pink Tower.

Since then the school has continued to grow and evolve. In 1989 the school moved to Eastsound, first inhabiting a trailer on School Street, then occupying space at Orcas Island Elementary in what is now the music room.

In 1997, the school purchased its current building on North Beach Road, raising more than $20,000 through donations and grants to secure a down payment. Since December 1999, the school has been led by Director Teresa Chocano. Tom Rubottom joined the school in the fall of 2000 as the head guide. In 2012, Moriah renewed her association with the school – this time as a board member.

For more info about the school, visit www.orcasmontessori.org or call 376-5350.

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