Why Montessori?

The Montessori method developed by Maria Montessori has been successfully educating children for over 100 years.  Today there are Montessori Schools in 110 countries on six continents with over 5,000 schools in the United States.

The Montessori philosophy is developed on a deep respect for the child as an individual.  Dr. Maria Montessori was an Italian physician. With an open mind  unencumbered by the educational ideas of her day, she observed children at work and play.  Over time she realized that children have distinctive identifiable developmental patterns. She believed that if children were placed in learning environments that met their particular development periods, they would find great joy in learning.   She defined a Montessori school as a “prepared environment in which the child, set free from undue adult intervention, can live his life according to the laws of development.”

In the prepared Montessori classroom there is a kind respectful teacher trained in observing children.  The classroom shelves hold beautiful, child-tested, hands-on manipulative materials that are designed to appeal to children and to teach a particular idea or concept.  The teacher introduces these materials to a child as appropriate. The child than may choose to work with the materials proceeding at his own pace and learning in ways that work best for him as an individual.

The Montessori approach has many benefits beyond providing important academic skills and knowledge. As children choose work based on their interest and developmental needs they become independent and self-confident. They find a sense of joy and satisfaction in their work. Their activities become self-motivated and self-directed. Self directed activities extend the children’s span of concentration and hone their self-discipline skills.  Also, as they work by themselves and with their peers, they develop respect for themselves and others. The Montessori method allows children to construct a foundation of habits, attitudes, skills and ideas that are essential for a lifetime of creative thinking and learning.