More Information on the Montessori Method: 

WHAT MATERIALS ARE USED IN THE CLASSROOM?

Montessori materials are designed to physically demonstrate particular skills. Each material is carefully constructed to be both beautiful and accurate. Children are shown how to use materials with respect and care, always returning them to their designated place and making sure they are prepared for the next student’s use. As children enter the elementary program, the materials become less concrete and more abstract.  

TELL ME A BIT MORE ABOUT MONTESSORI.

The Children's House at Serenbe follows the Montessori philosophy, implementing her methods through Montessori-trained faculty, prepared learning environments with beautiful wooden Montessori materials, and multi-aged classrooms with children remaining with their teacher for a three-year cycle. For even our youngest students, our curriculum emphasizes geography, world cultures, history, humanities, global languages, and the arts, in addition to the core subjects of science, mathematics, reading and writing.  We deeply respect each child and believe that all children, through curiosity and guided exploration, inherently love to learn. A Montessori education balances freedom with responsibility, and sets high standards of intellectual, social and moral development that is firmly rooted in the developmental stages of children.

  • Freedom of movement to interact with peers and choose activities nurtures the excitement of learning. Maria Montessori saw freedom as the single most important factor in allowing children to develop as spontaneous, creative individuals. Children naturally love to learn and are internally motivated.
  • The prepared environment is essential. The classroom is a responsive environment prepared with multi-sensory, sequential and self-correcting materials to support self-directed learning and the development of independence. The focus is on the process, not the results.
  • Children learn at their own pace and level. Small group instruction enables the child to learn at his or her own pace, with tailored instruction for each child. Through such small group instruction, teachers are able to develop strong relationships with their students and families, understanding each child’s strengths, challenges and how to unlock and ignite their potential.
  • Montessori focuses on the similarities in people, which lead toward understanding and peace. The curriculum emphasizes geography, history, world cultures, community service and peace education. Through the exploration of cultures, children gain a basic global perspective and begin to understand issues facing all of humanity.
  • Our children practice stewardship of the earth.  Students learn that we, as humans, are the custodians of the earth and have responsibility for an environment that sustains life.
  • Freedom and self-discipline become parallel paths. Self-discipline is acquired gradually through absorption in meaningful work. The child is guided by respect for the teacher, for the work of others and respect for the materials themselves. Growth requires freedom to use inborn powers to develop physically, intellectually and socially. A Montessori classroom provides this freedom within the limits of an environment that encourages a sense of order and self-discipline. Children thrive on order and structure, but need freedom within that order and structure to explore and learn.
  • All classes are multi-aged. In a three-year period, children experience being the youngest, the middle and the oldest in the community. They learn from, they practice with, and they teach other students. In this way, students reinforce their own learning and master skills while helping others.

FAVORITE MONTESSORI SITES + RESOURCES

This collection of Montessori-related media is intended to serve as a resource for parents or others seeking to learn more about the Montessori Method. 

WEBSITES

  1. Montessori Education (Wiki): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montessori_method
  2. Wikisori: http://www.wikisori.org/
  3. Maria Montessori Blog: http://mariamontessori.com/mm/
  4. Association Montessori Internationale: http://www.montessori-ami.org/
  5. Association Montessori USA: http://amiusa.org/
  6. American Montessori Society: http://www.amshq.org/
  7. Montessori Science: http://www.montessori-science.org
  8. Aid to Life: http://aidtolife.org/index.html
  9. What is Montessori Resource Site: http://montessoriobserver.com/what-is-montessori/montessori-videos/

RESOURCES

  1. School Locator (AMI): http://www.amiusa.org/school-locator-2/
  2. School Locator (AMS): http://www.amshq.org/School%20Resources/Find%20a%20School
  3. School Locator (NAMTA): http://www.montessori-namta.org/School-Directory
  4. School Locator (About.com): http://privateschool.about.com/od/montessoriindex/l/blmapmontessori.htm

BOOKS

  1. The Absorbent Mind (Heny Holt & Co., 1995), by Dr. Maria Montessori
  2. Montessori Madness! A Parent to Parent Argument for Montessori Education (Sevenoff, 2009), by Trevor Eissler
  3. Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius (Oxford University Press, 2005), by Angeline Stoll Lillard
  4. Discovery of The Child (Fides, 1967), by Dr. Maria Montessori
  5. The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything (Penguin/Viking 2009), by Sir Ken Robinson
  6. Drive (Penguin, 2011), by Dan Pink
  7. A Whole New Mind (Penguin, 2006), by Dan Pink
  8. The Schools Our Children Deserve: Moving Beyond Traditional Classrooms and “Tougher Standards” (Houghton Mifflin, 1999), by Alfie Kohn
  9. Punished By Rewards: The Touble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A’s, Praise, and Other Bribes (Houghton Mifflin, 1993), by Alfie Kohn
  10. Stop Stealing Dreams, 2011, by Seth Godin, http://www.squidoo.com/stop-stealing-dreams (free download)
  11. Brain Rules (Pear Press, 2009), by John Medina
  12. A Pattern Language (Oxford University Press, 1977) #18 Network of Learning

VIDEOS/SPEECHES/PRESENTATIONS

  1. Montessori Madness (5:44), by Trevor Eissler: Here are versions of this video in RussianSpanishItalianFrenchIndonesianHebrewFarsi, and Romanian
  2. Superwoman Was Already Here (6:14), by Daniel Petter-Lipstein:
  3. How Do You Hug a Child Like This? (3:23)
  4. Do Schools Kill Creativity? (19:29), by Sir Ken Robinson
  5. Bring On the Learning Revolution (17:58), by Sir Ken Robinson
  6. Changing Education Paradigms (11:41), by Sir Ken Robinson
  7. Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us (10:48), by Dan Pink:
  8. Achievement vs. Learning (1:05), by Alfie Kohn
  9. It’s Bad News if Students are Motivated to get A’s (1:03), by Alfie Kohn
  10. Google Co-Founder Sergey Brin talks about his Montessori education
  11. Google Founders Talk Montessori
  12. Dr. Steve Hughes, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics & Neurology, University of Minnesota Medical School, Discusses Montessori: * Dr. Hughes: Part I (4:23) * Dr. Hughes: Part 2 (3:38) * Dr. Hughes: Part 3 (3:27)
  13. Dr. Hughes: Good at Doing Things: Montessori Education and Higher-order Cognitive Functions
  14. Dr. Hughes: Building Better Brains: The Neurological Case for Montessori Education (1:35:27
  15. Dr. Hughes: NPR Interview on the Modern Educational System and the Impact of Montessori in Classrooms (48:37)
  16. Dr. Adele Diamond: Why Montessori Works (1:08:17)
  17. Educational Videos on the Montessori Method from the American Montessori Society

MEDIA COVERAGE