Once Upon a Time...

...there was a little school in a valley of lush grasses among low mountains not far from a rushing river. Elementary children from all over the community were invited to come there to learn and grow. 

This school was held in the teacher’s own home with a forest in the back yard and plenty of opportunities to observe the natural world.

Children were taught to care for their school as practice for caring for the greater Environment. 

Instruction was given individually and in small groups based on the strengths and interests of each child and careful observation by the trained teacher. 

As it was an authentic Montessori school, children of mixed ages shared the classroom, with younger children looking up to experienced leaders and everyone finding ways to help out. 

Partner and group work were always encouraged. Lively conversation and an abundance of safe movement were considered the child’s right and supported by common courtesy lessons.

Art and music flowed spontaneously in the classroom and was understood to be a child's human right. Music lessons combining Montessori, Kodaly and Orff methods were regularly offered to the children and open-ended creative exploration was equally supported.  

The learning environment was carefully prepared by the teacher with the developmental needs and gifts of the elementary child in mind. Beautiful, thoughtfully designed Montessori learning materials sparked exciting discovery-based learning in mathematics and language.  

Tools for mindfulness and peace practice were integrated into the classroom culture. The children's social development was respected and encouraged.

Effort was made to keep tuition affordable, well below the state average for other private schools. Sliding scale rates were offered to promote equity in the community. Families of ALL backgrounds, races, religions, sexual orientations and genders were warmly encouraged to apply. 

Mountain Community Montessori School was founded by Danielle Stech-Homsy, an experienced, AMI certified Montessori teacher with a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education, Kodaly music education training and a deep love of children and other humans. 


The name of the school evolved from the founder’s understanding that an elementary school needs to be more than a place for children to learn. It needs to be an organic collaboration between families, a vital community with the children’s growth at the heart of all activity.  

The founder recognizes that the school is privileged to be located on Nisenan land. 

Centuries of conscientious land stewardship by Nisenan people are held in deep appreciation.