History of Montessori
Montessori is a comprehensive educational approach from birth to adulthood which is focused on hands-on, experiential learning. This philosophy encourages exposure to diverse cultures and an acquisition of respect for that diversity.
Each Montessori school is built upon the educational legacy of Dr. Maria Montessori and her influential work, which began nearly one hundred years ago. Since 1907, the year of her first school, children and adults have engaged in an approach to learning that addresses all aspects of growth: cognitive, physical, social, emotional, and spiritual. In Montessori schools throughout the world, children develop the habits and skills of lifelong learning. Guided by teachers trained to observe and identify children’s unique learning capabilities, children learn in educational partnership with their teachers. Because children’s interests are heard and honored, Montessori students develop confidence and become self-directed. A powerful learning formula emerges as a result of this self-directed, self-initiated orientation to learning. When interested, a child becomes self-motivated. Self-motivation leads to becoming self-disciplined. When self-disciplined, a child engages in a process of mastery learning and fully develops his or her potential. Dr. Maria Montessori called this a “normal” approach to education.
We call this The Montessori Way. The Montessori Way refers to: the knowledge of how children naturally learn; a curriculum based on that knowledge designed for the developmental needs of , toddlers, three-to six- year-olds; a method of instruction involving learning how to observe and how to develop learning environments in which teachers challenge each child to extend fully his or her unique style of learning; a profession; a school characterized by calm, orderly, focused, and respectful learning behaviors; and, a person named Maria Montessori.
The Montessori learning environment contains specially designed, manipulative “materials for development” that invite children to engage in learning activities of their own individual choice. Under the guidance of a trained teacher, children in a Montessori classroom learn by making discoveries with the materials, cultivating concentration, motivation, self-discipline, and love of learning.
American Montessori Society (AMS) is an educational society founded in 1960 whose purpose is to help children develop their potential through the educational principles of Dr. Maria Montessori. Sunrise Montessori is affiliated with AMS and Illinois Board of Education certified.