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Monday-Friday – 8:00-3:30
Maria Montessori was an Italian physician and educator best known for the philosophy of education that bears her name, and her writing on scientific pedagogy. Her educational method is in use today in public and private schools throughout the world.
What is the Montessori model? The Montessori model is based around engaging children’s natural interests. By providing an environment that children can learn the way that best fits their personal needs, each child gets a learning experience perfectly tailored to their learning style. The communal learning environment also creates natural collaboration and competition, further increasing the speed at which students learn. The social aspect of Montessori school helps students build communication skills that will help them throughout their lifetime.
The AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) and AMS (American Montessori Society) list these elements as essential:
- Mixed age classrooms, with classrooms for children ages 2½ or 3 to 6 years old by far the most common
- Student choice of activity from within a prescribed range of options
- Uninterrupted blocks of work time, ideally three hours
- A constructivist or “discovery” model, where students learn concepts from working with materials, rather than by direct instruction
- Specialized educational materials developed by Montessori and her collaborators
- Freedom of movement within the classroom
- A trained Montessori teacher
Visit our Montessori Resources page to learn more about the Montessori method.
Sponsor a Child
Would you like to sponsor a child today? Many of the families in our region can’t afford excellent Montessori education for their child, even at the low-cost rate that we offer, or are on a long waiting list for a voucher. Please consider partnering with us so that a child may access transformative education.
What to Look for in a Montessori Preschool
– An orderly, pleasant environment, with materials that are complete and well-cared for.
– Typical Montessori materials are present in the classroom.
– A lack of toys in the classroom. Exceptions are things that could be toys, but are actually used for teaching. (i.e. Legos)
– Computers are a hotly debated subject in Montessori circles. Most AMI schools absolutely refuse to have them in their preschool programs and some even in their elementary programs. AMS schools often will have computers in their classrooms, but time and use are limited. Talk to the teacher. Find out the exact rules and use for computers in that particular school, and see if their rules and beliefs mesh with your opinions.
– Little to no workbooks, text books, or worksheets. True work, with books, materials (and sometimes computers) should be the norm.
– The overall impression should be one of a happy, busy, harmonious community.
– Children working in pairs and small groups, using Montessori materials and doing self-directed research.
– Older children giving lessons to the younger ones. – Children solving their own disputes without adult intervention. (If the teacher steps in, he/she should be helping the child learn how to develop the resolution skills, not just offering a quick solution.)
– Children moving about and talking to one another freely, but still respecting each other’s space.
-There should usually be a pretty lively “buzz” of discussion, and many discussions between and among kids regarding fairness, rules, community expectations, with only occasional adult participation.
– Teachers who speak with the children and engage them in respectful conversation as opposed to “talking at them” or “barking orders”.
– Teachers giving individual or small group lessons. Teachers should also be able to have time to simply observe the classroom in action, without taking an active role her/himself.
-Teachers should be able to explain the curriculum, how it integrates and develops over time.