Pre Primary

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Haley Pugh

Haley Pugh received an AMS infant/toddler credential in White Plains, NY, at the College of New Rochelle (CMTE) with the focus on toddlers. Haley has eighteen years of experience working as a Montessori teacher and has celebrated her tenth year at Abner Montessori School. She was introduced to Montessori in 1999 at the Palmetto Montessori School of Ridgeway as a parent of two young girls. Being intrigued by this method of teaching, she wanted her children to experience the Montessori environment to strengthen their independence, personal growth, and academic success. Her interests includes photography, creative writing, painting, and most importantly spending time with her two adult daughters.

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Lisa Rector

Lisa Rector is native to the Chapin area, growing up in the community from birth. Lisa began her eighteen year career working with children at Lexington Medical Center child development center where she was a teacher and bus driver. She has experience working with infants through children in middle school. She has her commercial drivers license and drives the bus for our after school program. She has two children in high school and one child in college. She enjoys spending time with family, camping, traveling, and working on old cars with her husband.

Primary Room 1

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Melissa Bates

Melissa Bates has a Bachelors of Science in Early Childhood education and a minor in Christian Counseling. She recently completed her Primary Montessori Certification and is in her third year working at Abner Montessori School. She enjoys working in a position where she can use her passion for child development and experience to make a difference in the lives of children. Melissa is originally from Ohio and moved to South Carolina with her husband in 2008. Her two children are in high school as a senior and sophomore. Melissa enjoys working as a Sunday School teacher, going on mission trips, reading, being outdoors and arts and crafts.

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Amy Yow Arden

Amy is a Pediatric Occupational Therapist, with over twenty years of experience. She is currently completing her Primary Montessori certification. Amy brings a passion for teaching children to attain their educational goals, as well as develop their social-emotional and behavioral skills. She works with children with all backgrounds including those who have developmental disabilities. Amy lives with her husband in North East Columbia and has five adult children. In her leisure time, she enjoys spending time with her children, being on the lake, taking care of her animals, gardening, crafts, cooking various ethnic recipes, concerts, theatre and of course, preparing more fun, exciting and educational Montessori lessons!

Primary Room 2

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Man Li Cho

Man Li Cho, is from Taiwan. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Mass Communications from Fujen Catholic University in Taipei., and a Masters of Science in Education in Instructional System Technology from Indiana University. After graduating from college, she took Montessori teacher training courses at Taiwan Montessori Foundation and became a Montessori certified teacher from AMS in 1989. She has fifteen years of experience working as a Montessori teacher. Mrs. Cho has three children in graduate school, college, and high school. All three children grew up in South Carolina where Mrs. Cho has lived with her husband, a professor at USC, since 2001. She enjoys reading, traveling, Zumba and 5K races. She also collects salt and pepper shakers and refrigerator magnets from around the world.

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Hannah Lei Garo

Hanna Lei Garo was born and raised in beautiful Honolulu, Hawaii with her two older brothers. September will make two years living in South Carolina. She achieved an associated degree in Hawaii, and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a focus in child and youth development. For the past three years, she has worked in early education programs guiding young children to becoming their own person. This will be Hanna Lei’s second year at Abner Montessori School. She looks forward to continuing her schooling to becoming a Montessori certified teacher. In her free time, she enjoys painting, golfing, and recently found a love for baking.


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Roger Pryor

Roger Pryor began his career in child development helping his mom open Chapin Children's Center. While in college he worked as a summer youth minister at Dillion First Baptist and continued working in youth ministry with the South Carolina Baptist Convention. After graduating from Clemson with a degree in marketing, Roger went into full-time youth ministry working with a ministry called Concoxions. In 1995 he came back to Chapin to work with his mom at Chapin Children's Center. In 2002 Roger started Abner Montessori with the ambition of creating an educational program for children to develop according to God's purpose for their life. He has Montessori training in primary, lower elementary, and upper elementary. Roger enjoys working with his tractor, construction, being outdoors, and learning new skills.

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Courtney McCrorey

Courtney is a graduate of South Carolina State University with a degree in Family Consumer Science and Child Development. She also received a Masters in Human Resource Management. While in college Courtney played the Saxophone in the SC State Marching Band. Her work experience includes being an assistant teacher at the Child Development Learning Center, Felton Laboratory School, and Abner Montessori Primary class. She currently works part-time as a music and worship leader at New Independent Methodist Church, Great Falls SC. Her hobbies include traveling, playing sports, and making music. She is looking forward to sharing her talents in music and her love of learning with our elementary students.

Abner Administration

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Cheryl Bright

Cheryl Bright is in her thirtieth year working with children. She began her career keeping children in her home while her three children were still young. She then transitioned to a child development program where she was an assistant director and teacher. After moving to South Carolina from Mississippi, she started working in a Montessori school as a primary assistant. Cheryl has worked in a Montessori school for the past eleven years. In her free time she enjoys spending time with family, camping, sewing, and cooking. Cheryl is also very involved with her church, where she helps lead children and youth programs.


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