The mission of Montessori in the Pines is to support early childhood development and academic learning through hands-on activities, which promote learning, independence and joy.  Just as we nurture and grow the plants in our garden, we nurture our children and watch them blossom into confident and happy little people.  My name is Lisa and I founded our school in 2013.  Our students are aged 3 to 6 years old.  Montessori in the Pines is a unique school in that we blend traditional Montessori education with farm school models.  Montessori is carried through into the garden, where the principals of self-initiated learning and sensory play are found.  Children are walking laboratories: their fingers and arms are units of measurement.  Their eyes, ears, and tongues analyze the natural world around them… Children, when in the garden, can use language and practice early math and science in a meaningful context.  They can also take pride in the food they grow, and form an early foundation of healthy eating habits and stewardship for the land.  Montessori can be summed up as, “I can do it all by myself”.  It is patience, friendship and self-discovery.  And, I truly believe Montessori education contributes to a better world.

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HELP US EXPAND AND SERVE MORE FAMILIES.  Here in the rapidly growing city of Bend, Oregon, my school serves 18 children and their families in this community.  But the problem is our space is maxed out and so we are trying to move to a larger location, to serve more of the community and keep Montessori affordable and not exclusive.  The problem we are running into is we are simply not profitable enough to raise the kind of capital needed for an expansion simply from the tuition money parents pay (we receive no state or federal funding). 

There is a troubling shortage of preschool placement available in my region, because many small schools such as ours lack either the money or access to a viable location to expand and thus cannot take on more students.  According to a recent report, more than 60 percent of children younger than 6 have either two working parents or a single parent who’s working. Child care facilities in our county have waiting lists with at least 100 students.  Oregon State University, which tracks child care availability and cost county-by-county, reports that there are 17 spots in child care centers or home-based care facilities for every 100 children in Deschutes County. 

Right now, I am a member of Bend’s Childcare Task Force, where myself and other childcare providers are working with city officials and representatives on bills to increase tax incentives for both providers and property owners who lease to child care providers, and on waiving the costly System Development Charges which small businesses are required to pay when they lease or buy a new location.  We are working hard to try to help many schools such as Montessori In The Pines offer quality childcare to families in Oregon. 

THIS MONEY WOULD BE USED toward a deposit on a commercial lease facility, it would pay for city permits, building fees, and classroom materials.  If we do not reach our goal to expand, or cannot secure a lease or purchase for a facility, the money will still go toward providing for our students in the form of classroom supplies and learning materials.

Unfortunately, many educational grants that exist are only for K-8 schools.  Early childhood education programs are left out in the cold from many grant opportunities, although we have the most crucial job of all: Early Childhood Intervention, Guiding Development and Preparation for Academic Learning. 



  • Thaddeus Suchy 
    • $25 
    • 10 mos


Lisa Tynan 
Bend, OR
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