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What Makes Montessori Education Unique?

1. The “Whole Child” Approach. The primary goal of a Montessori program is to help each child reach full potential in all areas of life. Activities promote the development of social skills, emotional growth, and physical coordination as well as cognitive preparation. The holistic curriculum allows the child to experience the joy of learning. 

2. The Prepared Environment. In order for self-directed learning to take place, the whole learning environment – room, materials, and social climate – must be supportive of learning. The teacher provides the resources, including a safe and positive climate. 

3. The Montessori Materials. Dr. Maria Montessori’s observations of the kinds of things that children enjoy and go back to repeatedly led her to design a number of multisensory, sequential and self-correcting materials that faciliate the learning of skills and lead to the learning of abstract ideas. 

4. The Teacher. The Montessori teacher functions as a designer of the environment, resource person, role model, demonstrator, record-keeper, and meticulous observer of each child’s behavior and growth. Extensive training is required for Montessori credentials to be obtained. 

5. The Multi-Year Span. Multi-age grouping is a cornerstone of the Montessori program. Typically, classes consist of two to three grades together. This provides a family-like atmosphere where learning can take place naturally. More experienced children share what they have learned while reinforcing their own learning.