The Montessori philosophy of education was developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, the first woman to graduate from the University of Rome Medical School. She became interested in education while treating mentally challenged children at the University’s psychiatric clinic. Gradually Dr. Montessori realized that these children were capable of learning much more than it was generally believed. Her teaching brought about remarkable results and set the foundation for the Montessori system. Dr. Montessori began her work with children of normal intelligence in 1907 when she was invited to organize schools in a reconstructed slum area of San Lorenzo, Italy. Her work was so successful that when she arrived in the United States at the end of 1913, she was heralded as “a woman who revolutionized the educational system of the world.” The author of several volumes and numerous articles about education, Dr Montessori died in 1952.
The Montessori of Hacienda Heights School continues its dedication to helping each child achieve it’s potential by nurturing and stimulating that unique union of mind and body through academics, music, drama, art, movement, and practical life skills directed by dedicated staff in a setting of rustic serenity.
The school uses the Montessori method combined with the latest research in learning to create an environment where children experience the joy of learning; the excitement of sudden intuitive leaps in understanding and the pride of accomplishment. The carefully planned, stimulating environment helps children develop within themselves an excellent foundation for creative learning. The learning materials have been designed to provide a wide variety of learning experiences geared to the developmental needs of young children. The learning involved in handling, manipulating and working with these materials is fascinating and absorbing for the young child. When engaged in these well-structured tasks and in exploratory activities, the child experiences a deep inner satisfaction, which leaves him or her with an overall positive attitude.
What Is Montessori?
Montessori is a special way for children and adults to be together. Every aspect of the experience is planned to help children become confident, capable, creative, caring and happy people who are a delight to be with.
The Montessori philosophy of education influences all aspects the child’s experience. From the design and selection of materials, to the selection and education of the class directress. All activities are carefully planned to make it easy for children to become that special person each child can be.
Teachers are called directress to remind them to gently direct and guide the children in their activities rather than dictate the child’s every move. This leads to mutual respect and affection helping the children develop confidence in their own ability.
The variety of materials to explore, the teacher’s quiet demonstration of their possibilities, and the time available for the child to watch older children, all work together to help the child develop the courage to try new things. Children are encouraged to thoroughly explore an activity. They quickly learn to examine a problem carefully, seeking the possibilities.. .discovering the solution. We see the maturing child’s confidence in their own ability grow. At an early age the child discovers the scientist’s delight in solving problems, the mathematician’s delight in playing with patterns, the artist’s delight in creation, the sociologist’s and psychologist’s delight in understanding people and the leaders delight in getting things done with people.
Montessori sets the stage to allow groups of children to have these experiences without infringing on each other’s rights or needs.
The effects of this program, when reinforced in the home, can be seen in high school students who organize their own work schedule or produce quality work on time without prodding. It is also seen in older children who intuitively understand the science, math, language and history they played with in long forgotten Montessori classes. We see it in grown up young men and women who are amazed to find that others didn’t start making little decisions at age two or three, and now haven’t had enough experience to make wise adult decisions.