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Twelve Elements Academy is an independent school for children ages 5-18 located in the heart of the beautiful Bitterroot Valley in Hamilton, Montana. Located on an 80-acre permaculture farm, Scottish Highland cattle, chickens, and the occasional bald eagle can be seen outside the window, all against the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains. 

Founded in 2014 (first under the name Riverstone School), Twelve Elements Academy  was originally oriented around the idea of a modern one-room schoolhouse where homeschooled children could come for supplemental classes. It soon became clear that the community, and the world at large, needed the unique and loving learning environment that Twelve Elements Academy  offered and in 2018 Twelve Elements Academy  opened as a full-time, full-curriculum school for children ages  6-18. 

Incredible momentum and passionate commitment from the Twelve Elements Academy  community has lead to strong enrollment and put into place big dreams that are already unfolding. In 2022 we will open the doors to a new, larger school house with 12 classrooms, a tech lab, sensory room, conference room, assembly space and commercial kitchen. Sports fields are in the works as well. 

What Makes 12 Elements Academy Unique

While the educational philosophy and environment of Twelve Elements Academy has much in common with Waldorf and Montessori schools, it is neither. In addition to being experiential, kinesthetic, and holistic, our educational philosophy is interdisciplinary, multicultural, and deeply connected to the local surroundings and community.


Our curriculum is influenced by Reggio-Emilia, John Dewey, and place-based education. Building on this timeless foundation, we prepare students to succeed in a 21st century world by incorporating the latest in learning research and proven pedagogical developments. 

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