What to expect in a Montessori environment?

Post date: Dec 16, 2013 9:44:37 AM

When you are considering a Montessori School for your child here are 11 things to look out for in a classroom of 3-6 year olds.

1) THIS: Open room with low shelves. Work area with mats, rugs and chowkis. Areas of work set up age appropriately for Practical Life, Sensorial, Language and Math. Writing area with insets for design. Culture. Reading/library area. Peace corner. Snack table where children are free to come and go. Some Schools have boards for display, but no busy, distracting,murals or cartoons.

low shelves

NOT THIS: walls full of stuff, worksheets laid out on tables, very little floor space. Star charts, progress charts, work lists, jobs lists etc.


2) THIS: Teachers engaging with the child individually or in groups.Encouraging innovation. Usually sitting on the floor.

NOT THIS: No active participation, no hands on, no innovation


3) THIS: Children working individually or in groups through the senses.

NOT THIS: Rote learning.


4) THIS: Collective celebration.

NOT THIS: Making an example of a child, flattery and praise.


5) THIS: Collaboration


NOT THIS: All on the same page.


THIS: Resolving conflicts peacefully and independently.

NOT THIS: Time out.


7) THIS: Independence to choose their own work, when to use the rest room, etc.

NOT THIS: Having to ask permission for every move they make.


8) NO TEACHER’S DESK in a Montessori classroom. She/he may possibly have a shelf.


9) THIS: A fresh clean welcoming feel and look to the classroom, and everything at the child’s level. Children being empowered by the sense of order and routine in their classroom. A classroom that can be maintain by all of them.

NOT THIS. Teacher driven.


10) THIS: conferring and discussing, talking in class is encouraged.

NOT THIS: Working in silence unless talking to the teacher.


11) THIS: An age range 3-6 year olds in one classroom, older children mentoring the younger children.

NOT THIS: Children streamed according to age.

Adapted from Montessori Circle. Not all images belong to Vismaya.