January 4, 2012

Just the other day I was asked to share my "montessori story" for the website, Discovering Montessori. I was delighted and eager to write my story of how I fell into and in love with the Montessori philosophy.  Then I got to thinking- Why don't I EVER talk about Montessori on my blog anymore?  Sure, It's not what I do for work full time anymore, but I still teach a couple days a week and believe 100% in the method. Lots of my friends and blog readers are mothers themselves and I have something of true value to offer in the subject, so why not then, right? I guess like anything, when your life shifts and you begin to find inspiration and pleasure in other things, that becomes what you spend most of your time on. Not to say that I don't find inspiration in my little classroom, but I've grown into someone who swoons over home and graphic design, children's fashion {as you know} and photography among other things. I spend most of my time at the Shop or in our home office working on The City Flea- I'm telling you all of this so you can understand why the education aspect of my posts have fallen short. With all of that said, I WOULD like to bring some education back to the blog, so here we go...
First let me say that while I fully believe in the Montessori philosophy, I realize there are other ways to educate and I will never say one is better than the other.  Each child is unique and different and one learning style may not suit the needs of every child.  I will say that before you "judge" Montessori, do some research and observe a Montessori classroom.  To fully understand the way the classroom community works, you need to see it in action.  It's a beautiful thing to witness and only reading about it won't give you the full spectrum.  

The above photo's are photo's i've snapped around my classroom.  {I teach a mixed aged group, 3-6- which is traditional of any Montessori program, on Tuesdays and Thursdays}  Each material or "work" is designed to teach a certain set of skills. First photo is of various work from my language area that each student is working on independently. The second photo is of the knobbed Cylinders. The cylinders vary in both height and diameter and hone fine motor skills as well as helping the child to discern between similarly shaped objects.  Generally, Montessori materials and classrooms are purposefully "beautiful."  The materials are intended to be made with natural woods to help the child connect to the natural world- the all encompassing, everything is related idea is something referred to as cosmic education.  It's pretty groovy really and you'd be surprised by how well a montessori kid can pick up on those connections.  

I am happy to answer specific questions you may have and know that in the future, I'll be posting every now and again on this topic and will perhaps have some montessori guest bloggers too!  What would you guys like to know / see on the topic? Thanks to a slew of friends on twitter for wanting to see more of this :) It was just the encouragement I needed!


  1. I can imagine teaching being so fulfilling and so much fun! I want to know more about the little actives you do with the kids! Im sure that's hard to blog about though. You have two very cool jobs Lindsay!

  2. It is great- fun AND tiring but working with kids (in any capacity) is truly the best. I have some good post idea's in the future about montessori DIY's and some other good stuff I think you'll enjoy :) I'm glad you find this topic to be so interesting! and thanks for your excitement in our baby desires :)

  3. Ummm I just jumped up and down about this! I've been wanting to pick your brain on Montessori for some time. E is definitely starting next fall at a Montessori and I've already started visiting. I'm thrilled about your take on the teachings...I just wish we could get down to Cinci for your classes! Thank you for sharing!!!

  4. Justine, I would love to talk to you about Montessori! Exciting that E is going to start in the fall! Lets get together soon!


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