The Montessori Method of instruction breaks with traditional approaches in many ways. Think of teachers as conductors or facilitators of an intricate orchestra of students and young minds rather than drill sergeants of unruly young children.
Maria Montessori founded her method on one basic principle – “follow the child.”A Montessori classroom is carefully prepared to allow the child to work independently and allows the joy of self-discovery. Teachers guide their students through a prepared environment, which is the classroom, introducing lessons and activities that both tease a child’s interest or curiosity and are skill/development appropriate for each particular child.
In approaching students in this manner, children are working on lessons and activities which interest them. As a result, they are learning exponentially more quickly, earlier and more efficiently than by traditional methods.
The Montessori Method divides the curriculum into five focused genres:
At Stone Ridge Montessori, each classroom is equipped with a series of lessons from each of the five genres and in varying degrees of complexity. Students, with one-on-one attention from faculty, work through the various lessons at their individual pace.
Children may elect to work on all five genres in one day or simply stick to one. Children are provided the choice and independence to make these types of decision for themselves, therefore developing a more independent, self-guided mode of thinking that showcases their individuality and creative thought processes.
However, the most important aspect of our educational mission does not concern academics. Rather, our primary goal is to foster and enhance each child’s natural sense of joy and wonder. We feel that children should delight in childhood, that the school day should include laughter and the buzz of creativity. We want students to love school and the process of learning. Maria Montessori’s idea “that education is not a chore, but a joyous exploration of life’s mysteries”is the most important lesson that we hope to teach our children.