Maria Montessori 1870 - 1952

Maria Montessori was a person of great depth and insight. She was Italy's first female doctor before stepping into the field for which she is so well known in early childhood education. She was an ambassador for world peace and the UNICEF Charter of Human Rights and Convention on the Rights of the Child were adopted directly from her.

Her deep commitment to children led her to become a champion in the research and development of their education. Doctor Montessori concluded that children have a natural love of life and learning which needed to be nurtured, not taken for granted.

This philosophy was put into practice in her first Montessori school in Rome in 1907 and has become her legacy to the children today in thousands of Montessori schools worldwide.

Principles

  • Every child is a unique person with creative potential, the drive to learn and the right to be treated with respect as an individual.
  • As children are profoundly affected by society and their immediate surroundings, we create an environment in harmony with the child's natural development.
  • Children must be given freedom to work and move around, within guidelines that enable them to see themselves as both independent and part of a group.
  • Montessori materials help children to explore and master their environment through activities which aid the development of the whole personality.
  • Children are encouraged to work at their own pace, either individually or in co-operation with others.
  • Mixed age groups provide opportunities for the children to develop their social abilities within the harmonious community
  • Children are carefully observed on a regular basis, both individually and as a group, to assist their full development

The Montessori Day

At Arlington Montessori School, each child develops at his or her own pace, in the prepared Montessori environment with the specially designed Montessori materials. Children are encouraged not to compare themselves with others but to do their very best every day. There will be an atmosphere of calm, as children concentrate on what they are doing for surprisingly long periods of time. Children work individually, or in a group with a friend.

Activities cover all aspects of child development, intellectual, physical and social. Each activity is complete in itself, and activities are inter-related. We provide the children with achievable challenges throughout their time at the school, so that self-esteem is nurtured and they are encouraged to even greater exploration and learning.

Classes in the school always maintain a mixed age group. Older children gain in confidence and reinforce their knowledge through helping those younger than themselves, and the younger children learn through watching the older ones. The mixed age group builds awareness of others in a community.