First and foremost, The Montessori House follows The Montessori Method.
Dr. Maria Montessori, the first Italian woman M.D., started a revolution in education through her observations of the way children learn. She was the first to demonstrate that children learn best by working with materials that stimulate their senses.
Dr. Montessori also discovered that there are natural learning “spurts” for different abilities (reading, logic, art, math, etc.) that follow a defined order in each child’s development. While these occur at different ages for each child, during one of these spurts the young mind is like a sponge ready to absorb all it can of a particular skill or subject. Dr. Montessori found the vast majority of these learning “spurts” occurred during the crucial early years before age 6.
The Montessori Method is recognized worldwide for its authentic "child-centered-ness" and its intellectual vitality. It is also renowned for its consistently remarkable results. Graduates of authentic Montessori pre-schools, like The Montessori House, are especially adaptive, independent, intellectually curious self-starters.
Some of the guiding principles of the Montessori philosophy are:
- Children learn and grow best in an inviting, enriched, and prepared environment where they are free to choose what interests them.
- "Follow the child", taking account of the different developmental paths of each child. All children in a class are not ready for the same lesson at the same time.
- Only by manipulating physical objects and materials (real, not imaginary things, not video images) can children properly learn and develop.
- The child's "work" is to develop the person he or she is to become. He or she cultivates an inner drive toward new discoveries and new achievements.
- The teacher’s "work" is to develop and care for the learning environment and attune it to the individual child's growing needs. The Montessori teacher is a culturally literate facilitator, keeper of the ground rules, demonstrator of the materials, and all-seeing observer. She must be quick to track learning progress and be ready with new materials and lessons geared to the next stages of each child's growth patterns, needs, and personal inclinations.
At The Montessori House you will see a school that effectively applies these principles and the many specific prescriptions and methodologies of the Montessori Method. Visitors who have not before seen a true Montessori classroom are amazed by:
- How each child can productively engage in his or her own work.
- The quiet; and the light hand teachers apply to guide the class.
- How advanced many of the children are in language and math.
To learn more about Montessori, we suggest you explore these links:
- Montessori 101 : an article to get you started
- Choosing a Montessori School: several articles on the subject
- Montessori Foundation -- Family Center: videos and articles for parents