What is Montessori?

Dr. Maria Montessori believed that every child learns individually and should be encouraged to work at his or her own pace. The Montessori Method allows children to discover and learn from their own experiences and is based on principles including observation, order, construction and independence in the prepared environment. In a Montessori classroom, teachers observe children as they work, quietly offer guidance and prepare them for their next activity when it’s time to do so. The classroom is designed so that a child can access the Montessori materials easily, freely selecting and replacing them without the need of adult assistance.

What makes Montessori Education unique?

Children choose their own activities, based upon their natural curiosity, thus remaining interested and engaged in what they are learning and doing. A Montessori-certified teacher is always close by, observing and preparing to help with the next lesson or question. A Montessori classroom is also a very clean and tidy place. Children treat their materials with care and put them in their proper place once they have completed their work.

What is the goal of a Montessori education?

The goal is to prepare children for a lifetime of creative thinking and learning. With the Montessori Method, your child receives a broad academic education in the context of a carefully planned, stimulating community and environment. We are committed to helping children develop within themselves the foundation, habits, attitudes, skills and ideas that are essential for achieving this goal.

What will my child learn at a Montessori school?

The curriculum is the same as at traditional school…and more. Our students develop social, emotional, motor and perceptual skills. They begin to learn reading, math, history, geography and science as young as age 3. Fine motor skills as well as practical life skills are developed as well.

What is the main difference between a traditional classroom and a Montessori classroom?

In Montessori classrooms, teachers address the needs of individual children who are learning through practice with hands-on materials. The teacher introduces a child to materials systematically, depending on developmental needs. The Montessori classroom is designed to promote self-discipline, independence and responsibility. Academically, children develop a foundation in language and math skills, physical and cultural geography, zoology, botany, physical science, history, music and art. They also learn practical life skills such as cooking, carpentry, sewing and cleaning. One of the most important aspects of a Montessori classroom is the teacher’s respect for the dignity of every child.

What happens when a child goes from a Montessori school to a traditional school?

In a Montessori elementary classroom, the curriculum is comprehensive, covering the basics as well as more advanced skill levels. When children leave a Montessori program, we strive to help them leave with inner self-discipline; a positive attitude toward others, school and learning; self-esteem and the ability to concentrate on tasks. Often, but not always, they are ahead of their peers. The skills and attitudes developed while in a Montessori program lead to a lifetime of curiosity and learning – a benefit for children who move from Montessori to private, parochial or public schools.

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Information provided by Montessori Unlimited.