Montessori Philosophy

Montessori education was founded in 1907 by Dr. Maria Montessori, the first woman in Italy to become a physician. She based her educational methods on scientific observation of children's learning processes. Guided by her discovery that children teach themselves, Dr. Montessori designed a "prepared environment" in which children could freely choose from a number of developmentally appropriate activities. Now, nearly a century after Maria Montessori's first casa dei bambini ("children's house") in Rome, Montessori education is found all over the world, spanning ages from birth to adolescence.

Montessori emphasizes learning through all five senses, not just through listening, watching, or reading. Children in Montessori classes learn at their own, individual pace and according to their own choice of activities. Learning is an exciting process of discovery, leading to concentration, motivation, self-discipline, and a love of learning. Montessori represents an entirely different approach to education.

Montessori is designed to help all children reach their fullest potential at their own unique pace. A classroom whose children have varying abilities is a community in which everyone learns from one another and everyone contributes.

Research studies show that Montessori children are well prepared for later life academically, socially, and emotionally. In addition to scoring well on standardized tests, Montessori children are ranked above average on such criteria as following directions, turning in work on time, listening attentively, using basic skills, showing responsibility, asking provocative questions, showing enthusiasm for learning, and adapting to new situations.

Video – Discussing the alignment of the Montessori Educational Environment to the Common Core Standards

Video – An Introduction to the Montessori Math Curriculum

Video – Educating for Peace: The Essence of Montessori

Video – Google Founders Talk Montessori

Video – Living Montessori: Stephen Curry & Family

AMA vs. Traditional School
American Montessori Academy  Traditional School
 View the child holistically, valuing cognitive, psychological, social and emotional development  Views the child in terms of competence, skill level, and achievement with an emphasis on core curricula standards and social development. 
 The teacher is an instructional facilitator and guide   The teacher has a dominant more central role and controls the classroom.
 The child is an active participant in learning. The child is allowed to move about and respectfully explore the classroom.   The child is a more passive participant in learning. 
 The instruction, both individual and group, adapts to students' learning styles and development levels.   Mainly group instruction
 A carefully prepared learning environment and method encourage the development of internal self-discipline and intrinsic motivation.  The teacher acts as a primary enforcer of external discipline promoting extrinsic motivation. 
 Grace, courtesy, and conflict resolution are integral parts of the daily Montessori peace curriculum.   Conflict resolution is usually taught separately from daily classroom activities. 
 Care of self and the environment are emphasized as integral to the learning experience.   Less emphasis on self-care, spatial awareness, and care of the environment. 
 The goal is to foster a love of learning.   The goal is to master curricula objectives.