Montessori Classrooms

In the typical Montessori classroom:

  • The teacher operates as a director; observing and following the children
  • The teacher makes notes after observing the children
  • The relationship between that of the teacher and the child is warm, caring and respectful
  • Learning is child led with them following an activity for as long, or as short a time as it holds their attention
  • The room is calm and peaceful, with a co-operative, community-like atmosphere
  • Whole group lessons are minimal
  • Strong emphasis is placed on personal responsibility for order in the work area
  • Children behave in a respectful manner towards the materials and others

Room Layout

  • Montessori encourages a clean, ordered and prepared environment
  • Child size desks are arranged to support a variety of work spaces
  • Shelves have activities spaced along them in a visually appealing way
  • Children are encouraged to prepare snacks and drinks in their snack area as they require them
  • Open spaces allow children to work on the floor and spread their materials out
  • Each room contains a functional kitchen and quiet spaces

Lesson & Activity Types

  • Individual and small group lessons are the primary means of instruction
  • There is minimal use of workbooks and worksheets
  • Activities are attractive, tactile and often colour coordinated
  • Activities are ‘real’ – they do not just replicate real life, they are real life
  • Large group, circle time or mat time happens at the beginning or end of each work cycle

Behaviour

  • Children care for one another
  • Children treat each other with respect
  • Children demonstrate independence, self-discipline and choice
  • Children of different ages work together and learn from one another