Frequently Asked Questions
1. HOW IS A MONTESSORI SCHOOL DIFFERENT FROM OTHER SCHOOLS?
In most preschools the children are taught educational concepts in a group by a teacher. In a Montessori Preschool
the children learn concepts spontaneously as they work independently with many materials in the environment.
2. WHAT IS THE MONTESSORI METHOD OF EDUCATION?
The Montessori Method of Education is basically a unique approach to learning. Rather than “teaching” the child
concepts, an environment is designed to stimulate the child’s interests and facilitate his understanding and learning
capacities spontaneously with little or no adult intervention.
3. WHO STARTED THE MONTESSORI METHOD?
Dr. Maria Montessori, over 70 years ago, was Italy’s first woman medical doctor. Using her scientific background,
she began observing the children in the children’s house of Rome. Based on unbiased observations she developed
unique materials, a child-centered environment, and was one of the first persons to revolutionize education thought
by stressing respect for the child, freedom of expression, self-education, and training through use of movement and
4. WHAT IS IN A MONTESSORI CLASSROOM?
The Montessori classroom is a child-sized world. Whatever is in the world outside can be incorporated
meaningfully in the Montessori classroom. To a child, the world is unmanageable...it is too big, too complex, and
too confusing. By careful selection of the materials by the Directress, an environment is set up that allows the child
to explore life on a level he can understand. The materials or exercises are designed to stimulate independent
exploration. This prepared environment entices the child to proceed at his own pace from simple activities to more
complex ones. Through this process the child’s natural curiosity is satisfied and he begins to experience the joy of
discovering the world about him. Materials and curriculum center around Practical Life, Sensorial, Language,
Math, Geography, Science, Art, Music, Drama and Dance.
5. HOW DO CHILDREN INTERACT IN THE ENVIRONMENT?
As the children develop their sense of pride in their “work”, a feeling of confidence, well being and joy begins to
manifest itself in the child. A “new child” is born. A classroom of Montessori children is a joy to watch. There seems
to be a spirit of respect, love, and cooperation among the children that is not found too often.
6. WHAT IS THE BEST AGE TO START A CHILD?
Maria Montessori outlined various periods of “sensitivity”. During these times, a child is more capable of and
interested in learning specific concepts. At age two and a half to three and a half, a special sense of order,
concentration, coordination and independence begin to emerge. This time is ideal to begin a child’s training in
Montessori as he is at the perfect period to build a strong foundation for future learning.