About Us

Mandarin Immersion at 18422 Culver Dr., Irvine CA 92612

At Seashore Academy, we develop healthy, creative, intellectually curious students in an ethical and nurturing environment.

We believe that:

• athletic and extra curricular activities are important aspects of child development,

• individualized paced learning triggers intellectual growth,

• teaching children to treat others with kindness and respect fosters healthy emotional development,

• absorbing foreign languages through immersion at a young age is beneficial for brain development,

• fostering self-responsibility and independent learning builds accountability and confidence,

• small group learning is ideal for social and emotional development

 About Our Founder 

Marlene Sheehan Dandler graduated from the Lakeside School in Seattle WA in 1994 and Dartmouth College in 1998. During her time at Dartmouth, she studied at the Freie Universität Berlin, Germany as well as at the Beijing Normal University in Beijing, China.

While at Dartmouth, Marlene worked as a German language instructor for Professor John Rassias, the creator of the Rassias Method, a unique, intensive language immersion technique used by the Peace Corps to learn a foreign language in 10 days’ time.

This revolutionary method of rapid, effective language acquisition impressed Marlene greatly and became the foundation of Seashore Academy’s language immersion philosophy.

When her own three children were ready to start school, Marlene visited over 2 dozen public, charter and private schools searching for an academically intensive, nurturing school in which her children would be immersed in a foreign language.

She and her husband decided to immerse their three children in Mandarin Chinese to best prepare them for future business and work opportunities. As there were no Mandarin immersion programs in Orange County at the time, Marlene spearheaded a successful effort to launch a public Mandarin immersion district school in Orange, CA, which operates to this day. While building the program, she homeschooled her children with a private Mandarin tutor. Word of the homeschool group spread, and the other children started joining. The group moved to a Boys and Girls Club in Costa Mesa for 2 years, then to Irvine, CA.

Today, all of the children at Seashore, including Marlene’s own three children, speak, read and write Mandarin Chinese in traditional characters. They work in an academically accelerated environment and enjoy plenty of free time to read and play as they have no homework.


Our TK-6th Grade program is part of University United Methodist Church, located in Irvine, off University & Culver and the 405. We are just minutes from Newport Beach and Tustin.  

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Preparing Bright Minds for a Changing Future