The Montessori Approach

The Montessori Method of education is based on the observations and discoveries of Dr. Maria Montessori. She was the first woman physician in Italy, graduating from the Royal University of Rome in 1896. From her many years of observation of children she began to design activities that would help the individual development of each child. Given a carefully prepared learning environment, children work toward perfecting their concentration, inner control, and will. A Montessori program is an individualized program designed to help each child reach his or her fullest potential. The Montessori materials are designed to help develop concentration, coordination and independence, as well as give good experience with academic concepts. The classroom environment allows the child to develop his or her social sense and awareness of others in a natural and unrushed way. Montessori education is education for life.

“I have studied the child, I have taken what the child has given me and experienced it and that is what is called the Montessori Method.”

- Dr. Maria Montessori (1870- 1952)

Philosophy

Dr. Montessori believed that no human being is educated by another person; he must do it himself or it will never be done. She therefore felt that the goal of the educational process should not be to fill the child with facts but rather to cultivate his own natural desire to learn and to help him express his creative soul as early in life as possible. Her search revealed  that children are most eager  to learn between the ages of two and six, the period when a child can pick up knowledge and understanding of his environment life a sponge and consider it a natural and delightful activity. She also discovered that during these early years there are sensitive age periods when the child shows unusual ability to acquire particular skills and when it is actually easier for him to learn those skills than to any other time in his life.

She found that small children possess a deep-seated love of logic and order in the arrangement of things around them and will work best within a carefully prepared environment that gives order and logic to the impressions they receive. The classroom environment that she prepared was scaled to a child’s size and geared to her inner needs. It allowed him to experience the excitement of learning by his own choice and at this own speed.  She believed that children are best able to comprehend their environment in very concrete ways, through immediate personal contact, and so she designed concrete tools to lead the child forward towards the ability to work in abstractions- the numbers, letters, and ideas which older people use to represent concrete things. When a child does begin these activities he learns them in the same natural way he learns to walk and talk.

She felt that the teacher should serve as an enthusiastic guide in the child’s progress from simple to complex, from using rudimentary to refined tools and from out to self-control. They should not be the source of all their knowledge and discipline. She saw that, from her own personal experience, the child learns best from other children. Therefore, her children were grouped together in order to give the younger ones a graded series of models from imitation and the older ones an opportunity to reinforce their own knowledge by helping those younger. Her research also indicated that children have fantastic powers of concentration if properly stimulated, far exceeding that of most adults.

When you observe the Montessori class in action, you understand the secret of her success. The habits, skills and approach to learning which a child develops in a Montessori class can be good for a lifetime. They will help him/her to work more effectively, to observe more carefully, to concentrate more effectively, to learn more joyfully, and thus to realize their own best potential all through life life. They have the tools to continue their self-education – the only real education – no matter where they go.

 

Testimonials

Below are some excerpts of recent testimonials about Pathway Montessori School and our staff. Click on the links below the testimonials to read the full letters:

“When (my son) began at 31/2 he was hardly speaking and now, having just turned 5, he is doing simple math, writing, learning the concept of time as well as creatively experiencing a wide variety of art and culture.”
“The Montessori way of teaching was able to foster creativity and encourage curiosity. He was always looking forward to being in school and spending time with his teachers and peers.”
“They truly are the best school in Calgary!”
Award Voter,
“The teachers and staff are friendly, professional, welcoming and knowledgeable. My son loves it and is always happy to go to school:)”
Award Voter,
“Pathway Montessori is a superb school. Always do their best to provide valuable knowledge and take time to really help out their students. No school compares to them! :D
Award Voter,
“They deserve to win for their dedication to the children. They have the best image, provide quality service, and I have seen a huge improvement in my children. Absolutely worth it!”
Award Voter,