Montessori A to Z
There’s more to Montessori than multi-age classrooms and kids working at their own pace! Find out more about this time-tested approach to learning.
There are more than 70 private and public Montessori schools serving the metro Atlanta area. Springmont of Sandy Springs, established in 1963, is the oldest Montessori school in the Southeast.
Backed by research
The theories of Dr. Maria Montessori are backed by years of research conducted by educators all over the world.
Children are encouraged to explore their own natural curiosities and inclinations, becoming active seekers of knowledge.
Montessori supports the development of the whole child, with an understanding that motor-skills activities stimulate cognitive development – essential to concentration and focus.
Instead of rows of desks, classrooms are designed with open spaces and activity areas that invite students to explore and choose.
Montessori-educated celebrities include entertainer Taylor Swift, Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and actors John Cusack and Helen Hunt.
Montessori teachers act as guides, fostering students’ independence and self-motivation, rather than leading in front of the classroom.
Parents can utilize principles of the Montessori method at home by teaching life skills like cleaning, cooking and shopping, and involving kids in family decisions.
In the Montessori classroom, subjects are interwoven; an in-depth study of the pyramids might include history, language and geometry.
Through teacher support, instructional tools and a community-based classroom, students enjoy learning for the satisfaction and fulfillment of it, rather than the reward of a grade.
Hands-on manipulative skills are a key part of early Montessori education. Children may string beads, work with lacing cards, create friendship bracelets or learn to knit.
Students learn at their own pace, rather than following a specific curriculum or schedule.
Classrooms are structured with children in a three-year mixed age group; younger children learn from watching and listening to their older peers.
Montessori philosophy includes the belief that nurturing independence, focus and sense of order at an early age helps open a child’s mind for learning and development.
Teachers observe students’ learning styles, abilities and interests, matching each student with appropriate lessons and material.
Students in Montessori schools develop confidence, longer attention spans and natural self-motivation – qualities that help them reach their full potential.
The freedom students have in the classroom allows them to explore, question and make connections about subjects that interest them.
Grades and test results have less importance in the Montessori classroom. Instead, students are encouraged to set goals and use self-assessment without the competitive structure of grades.
Older kids act as mentors to their younger classmates; students are encouraged to share ideas, solve problems and work on projects together, building a sense of teamwork.
Certified Montessori teachers are required to complete a full year of specialized training, in addition to their college degree.
Montessori for adolescent students builds on the foundation created in the elementary years, but also has elements of a traditional school day, such as scheduled classes and an increased focus on testing.
Students understand that each person has value; Montessori nurtures social-emotional skills such as empathy, courtesy and respect for others.
Children have an innate sense of wonder, which is nurtured through hands-on exploration, fewer classroom limits and the freedom to choose.
Music plays an important role in the Montessori method. There are musical instruments to explore, music classes, singing and movement.
For 113 years teachers have used the Montessori method to educate children throughout the world.
Maria Montessori encouraged simplicity, beauty and order in her classrooms – aesthetically pleasing elements that enhance focus and mindfulness.
– Mary Williams
Find a great Montessori school for your child with our list of Atlanta’s top schools.