About Us

Little Hoku Montessori Academy serves preschool children between the ages of 2.5 and 6. Our preschool is conveniently located right off Piilani Highway in North Kihei, on the island of Maui in Hawaii. Our classrooms are inside the Kihei Lutheran Church. The preschool is an easy commute for Maui residents of Kihei, Wailea, Kahului, and Wailuku. It is also less than 30 minutes to Paia, Makawao, and Kula.

The facility is equipped with air-conditioning, fire sprinklers, and a 4500 sq. ft. grass gated outdoor area for children to play and enjoy, as well as an outdoor sink for maximum cleanliness. Our Montessori school is licensed for 24 preschool and kindergarten aged students, but sets the capacity at 18 for an optimal student-teacher ratio.

Take a few minutes to explore the website to learn more about Little Hoku Montessori Academy and our philosophy.

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Little Hoku’s mission is to provide a safe and fun environment for toddlers to grow to be independent and creative individuals. Our school follows the Montessori philosophy. Little Hoku focuses on activities by directing our toddlers in various Montessori activities to nourish their creativity and academics.

Core Values


Little Hoku Montessori Academy is a program for children ages 3 to 6.

Little Hoku has one classroom with a Lead teacher and a teacher’s aid, which is People Attentive To Children (PATCH) certified. Our program offers Preschool and Kindergarten. Finally, we are licensed for 24 students, but we set the capacity at 18 for an optimal teacher to student ratio.

Success for Every Child

Montessori works in every setting for the success of each child. It is carefully designed to bring out the best in individuals and connect them with others.

Making a Difference

The Montessori method prepares your child to make a difference in the real world with a strong emotional, social, behavioral, and moral foundation.

Transformative Education

Your child’s education will be hands-on, self-paced, collaborative, and joyful—everything that is needed to create a lifelong learner and doer.

Personalized Teaching

Our teachers do great work because they do it with you and your child. They know how to personalize education for each student while moving all forward.
Blond boy looking at camera with another child and a teacher in background


State of Hawaii Certified

Little Hoku Montessori Academy is certified by the State of Hawaii Department of Human Services (DHS) childcare center.

AMI Certified Teacher

The lead teacher is Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) certified.

Safety Certified

All staff members are CPR/AED and first aid certified.


Shadi Naderi, PhD

Founder and Owner

Dr. Naderi has earned her PhD degree in Mathematics and has spent the last 8 years in Research. Her passion for education and the undeniable need for preschool in the beautiful Island of Maui have convinced Dr. Naderi to open the Little Hoku Montessori Academy.

Ms. Lory

Teacher’s Aid

Ms. Lory’s experience with children goes back to when she had her own small childcare business. Ms. Lory has worked as a teacher’s aid past year at Hale O Keiki Montessori. In addition to childcare experience, she has worked as a health assistant bringing all that knowledge to Little Hoku families. Ms. Lory is working on her early education childhood credits and soon will be certified as an assistant teacher in the state of Hawaii.

Ms. Eva

Lead Teacher

Ms. Eva is originally from North Florida but has lived in Germany, England, France, Seattle, Portland, and Maui. While working as a drama teacher in Seattle she discovered her love for working with toddlers. This passion continued through her work as a teaching artist with the Maui Academy of Performing Arts. During one of her drama residencies, craving more time in the classroom and the opportunity to develop deeper relationships with her students, she decided to pursue her Montessori training. In 2011 she received her AMI training from Montessori Northwest. She has worked as an assistant at the Montessori School of Maui, and as a lead teacher at South Maui Montessori Hale O Keiki. She creates a loving environment where children’s curiosity and wonder is nurtured, where exploration is supported, and artistic expression is valued. Ms. Eva is currently working on her Masters in Education with an emphasis in Montessori and Reggio Emilia. Her greatest blessing recently was welcoming a baby girl into her family.

Alisa Shtromberg

Director of Marketing

Ms. Shtromberg began her career in the field of science. She earned her B.S in Astrophysics, and a M.S in Physics. After several years of working as an Optics Instrumentation Engineer, in 2010 she made a career leap into digital marketing, specifically web content strategy, design, and development. While her love for science remains, her passion is helping organizations with their web and digital content needs. Ms. Shtromberg joined Dr. Naderi in her venture into education initially as a web designer, only soon to realize her role was far beyond just building the website for Little Hoku. As the Director of Marketing she helps drive the marketing, brand, and PR strategy for Little Hoku. In her spare time, Ms. Shtromberg enjoys spending time with husband and two young boys. She currently resides in Seattle, Washington.

“We must help the child to act for himself, will for himself, think for himself; this is the art of those who aspire to serve the spirit.”

Dr. Maria Montessori

Physics and Educator, Inventor of the Montessori Education Method
These very children reveal to us the most vital need of their development, saying : 'Help me to do it alone!

From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 67

"The child's development follows a path of successive stages of independence, and our knowledge of this must guide us in our behaviour towards him. We have to help the child to act, will and think for himself. This is the art of serving the spirit, an art which can be practised to perfection only when working among children

The Absorbent Mind, p. 257

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