Sabrina was born and raised in rural Colorado and attended the Colorado School of Mines (CSM) on a volleyball scholarship. She earned a BS degree in Petroleum Engineering there and enjoyed a well-rounded experience as a college-athlete. She met her husband, Ryan Binkley, at CSM and moved to Alaska in 2001 to begin her life in Alaska and her career in engineering. After a short time with Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, she began work in the family business at the Riverboat Discovery. For the past 9 years she has worked as Vice President of Retail Sales and as the Head Buyer for the company.
She is involved in the community in several ways including serving on the United Way Board of Directors and is a charter member of the Golden Heart Rotary Club of Fairbanks where she is currently serving as President. She developed a passion for Montessori education when she realized how beneficial it was for her son at the primary level. His interest in the process of learning was inspiring and he was engaged in his work. Sabrina began to study the methodology. She served on the Fairbanks Montessori School Board of Directors for 3 1/2 years and is currently a member of that school’s Capital Campaign Committee. Her son Simon Binkley (7) completed the Fairbanks Montessori School three-year program (ages 3 – 6) and began his elementary adventure last year as a first grader in the inaugural class at Spruce Tree. Her son Clive (3) will begin his educational experience in the Children’s House Program at Spruce Tree this fall.
Mrs. Coe Kropuenske
Lead Lower Elementary Teacher and Curriculum Director
Coe grew up in Winona, Minnesota. She attended Millikin University in Decatur, IL on a vocal scholarship and graduated with a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre. While in college, Coe sang in the touring concert choir, performed in the show choir, and was in many musical theatre productions. After college, Coe first traveled to Alaska while touring with the Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s A Christmas Carol. While pursuing her performing career in Chicago, her “day job” was as a nanny. She came to find working with children more fulfilling and decided to pursue Montessori training. She discovered Montessori education was her true passion—her “cosmic task.”
Coe comes to Spruce Tree Montessori with over ten years of Montessori experience in both Children’s House and lower elementary classrooms. She was a founding member of Riverway Learning Community, a Minnesota Public Charter School, where she taught for many years. Coe and her husband, Matt, have been married over 11 years and are blessed with two children, Phoebe (11) and Brandon (7). Coe’s American Montessori Society credentials include Early Childhood (Midwest Montessori Teacher Training Center, Evanston, Illinois) and Elementary I & II (The Center for Contemporary Montessori Programs at St. Catherine’s University, St. Paul, Minnesota).
Coe attended a Montessori Children’s House (preschool/kindergarten program) herself and has fond memories of working with the Montessori bells and the trinomial cube. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to start building new memories in the last frontier with the children, families, and staff of Spruce Tree Montessori School.
Mrs. Kristen Roper
Lead Children’s House Teacher
Kristen was born and raised in Southwest Florida. As a child she attended a Montessori preschool and has fond memories of washing dishes and building the pink tower. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Florida following in her mother’s footsteps to become a teacher. For the past three years she worked as a lead teacher for the 3-6 age group at Kingswood Montessori Academy in Homestead, Florida. During that time she fell in love with the Montessori Method and received her primary Montessori certification from The Center of Guided Montessori Studies. Kristen and her husband, AJ, an F16 pilot at Eielson Air Force Base, just married in Jamaica and are excited to begin their journey in Alaska.