The Montessori Method of Education developed by Dr. Maria Montessori is a child-centered educational approach based on scientific observations of children from birth to adulthood. It involves a self-directed, hands on curriculum where the children may learn at their own pace. The Montessori Method encourages creativity and curiosity and leads children to ask questions, explore, investigate and think for themselves as they acquire skills. Montessori education is practiced in an estimated 20,000 schools worldwide, serving hundreds of thousands of children from birth to eighteen.
Important components of a Montessori Program
Mixed age groupings are a trade mark of the Montessori Method. Younger children learn from observing older children, older children serve not only as role models but reinforce their learning by teaching younger ones concepts which they have already mastered. Cooperation replaces competition in this setting. Mixed age grouping also allows both age groups opportunities to develop their social and emotional skills.
A schedule which allows for large blocks of time so that the children may create and learn with few interruptions and distractions.
Children are free to work at their own pace with materials they have chosen, either alone or with others. Through observation the teacher determines which new activities and materials may be introduced to an individual child or to a small or large group. The aim is to encourage active, self-directed learning and to strike a balance of individual mastery with small group collaboration within the whole group community.
Montessori classrooms, or Prepared Environments, are designed to meet the physical and psychological needs of the child at each stage of development. In Montessori, the curriculum is embedded within the classroom, in the form of a carefully designed and sequenced range of hands-on learning materials and activities. Montessori materials are designed to stimulate the child into logical thought and discovery. The beauty, order and accessibility in the classroom serve to entice the child into activity. Guided by the Montessori teacher, the child explores the materials independently, and this is when the learning occurs. Children are able to engage with the activities according to their individual interests and at their own pace. In this way learning becomes highly personalized.
Dr. Maria Montessori observed that children experience Sensitive periods, or windows of opportunity as they grow. As their students develop, Montessori teachers match appropriate lessons and materials to these sensitive periods when learning is most naturally absorbed and internalized.
Sensitive Periods for Children from Birth to 6 years of Age:
Sensitive Period for Order (age 18 months to 2 years)
Sensitive Period for Language (birth to 6 years)
Sensitive Period for Movement (birth to 4 years)
Sensitive Period for Refinement of the Senses (birth to 5 years)
Sensitive Period for Numbers (4 to 5.5 years)
Sensitive Period for manners and courtesies (2 to 6 years)
“ Montessori is an education for independence, preparing not just for school, but for life.”
With the exploration of practical life, sensorial, language, mathematics and cultural materials a child is continually learning about coordination, concentration, sequence of events and precision.
Based on the Montessori philosophy and our emphasis on the "Six E's" - Embrace, Enlighten, Enrich, Encourage, Educate and Excel, we focus on each child's individual abilities and interests allowing them to proceed at their own pace, helping them become confident and independent individuals. We emphasize social, emotional, creative and physical development as well as intellectual development.
At All Saints', we are like a family. We embrace everyone in our school community and we support each other in all that we do.
We strive to empower our students with an awareness of positive values which will enable success within society.
We enrich our students' lives with an enhanced curriculum. We provide our students with many hands-on learning opportunities.
We inspire students to take on challenges. Mistakes are a part of learning. It's okay to make mistakes. We encourage our students to learn from their mistakes.
We believe in a multi-faceted approach to education. As well as academics, we teach our students essential life skills. We prepare our students for the challenges they may face during their lives.
We use many teaching strategies to ensure that students with different learning styles can excel in their journey of learning.