How Do Montessori Schools Work (8 Characteristics Of Montessori Schools)

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More and more successful people are coming out crediting their Montessori education in helping them develop the confidence, knowledge, and self-starter skills that made them who they are today. The demand for Montessori has never been this high. Have you wondered…

How Do Montessori Schools Work

How do Montessori schools work? Montessori schools work differently from traditional schools. They allow children to move freely while learning through independent experiential learning. The Montessori classroom is divided into different activity areas and the teachers act as observers and guides. The Montessori materials are open-ended and the curriculum is adaptable.

The Child-Centered Philosophy

Montessori schools do not teach children the same lessons at the same time. Each child is allowed to choose their own activities, pursue their interests, and be responsible for their own learning.

Montessori schools do not let teachers direct the lessons and the class. Montessori banks on the child’s inner motivation to learn and seek knowledge.

Montessori schools provide ample opportunities for learning for the specific interest or field of study the child is focused on.

Independent Experiential Learning

Montessori schools do not rely on textbooks. They use hands-on activities so children can learn independently or together as a group.

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    Independent experiential learning allows children to gain a deeper, more meaningful understanding of their lessons and subject matter.

    By using independent experiential learning, Montessori schools do not need not use standardized testing and grades to measure children’s progress. Montessori children can demonstrate their knowledge or skills instead of answering and guessing test questionnaires.

    The Montessori Classroom

    The Montessori classroom does not like classrooms in regular schools. Montessori schools look like giant playrooms with various activity areas for different subjects. It is full of Montessori learning materials that are appropriate to the child’s age and learning requirements.

    The Montessori classroom design is intentional and arranged in a sequential, logical, and orderly manner.

    The Montessori classroom provides an environment where students and Montessori adults can form strong bonds as a community.

    The Montessori Teachers

    Unlike regular schools, Montessori teachers do not sit in front of seated students and orate the lessons. They do not instruct or direct the lessons and activities of the day. They let the children do all that.

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    Montessori teachers organize and plan the activity stations and Montessori materials ahead of time. During class, they sit back, observe, guide, encourage, consult, and provide feedback to students.

    Teachers do one-on-one time with each student as they set goals together. Montessori teachers provide feedback to students after every activity. They let the children know what they did right, what they missed, what they can improve on, and how to do better. Other roles Montessori teachers do:

    • Provide regular feedback and progress reports to parents.
    • Regularly plan and update the Montessori activities, lessons, and materials to keep up with student progress, growth, and current developmental needs.
    • Work with child and behavioral experts as needed along with doctors, therapists, specialists, and school leaders.
    • Build strong rapport with students to build trust.
    • Keep updated with current Montessori techniques and gain more knowledge to become better at their jobs.

    The Montessori Materials

    The Activity stations in the Montessori classroom are custom-made and tailored fit to the developmental needs and learning styles of each child.

    The Montessori learning materials are purposeful and open-ended to stimulate the child’s senses, intellect, and motor skills.

    Montessori materials are not factory-made. They are simple and made from natural materials like wood, metal, paper, and cloth. Montessori materials are constantly rotated as children learn and outgrow the lessons.

    The Montessori Curriculum

    Montessori schools have an adaptable curriculum. Other schools have a set and predetermined curriculum, unlike Montessori schools.

    The Montessori curriculum changes and is unique for each child. It is updated according to the child’s interests and development as they learn.

    Montessori does not believe in generalizations and in putting children in a box. Thus, the adaptable curriculum.

    No Tests and Grades

    The Montessori assessment method does not involve standardized testing and grades. Montessori schools measure children’s progress differently.

    Instead of tests, teachers let children practice and master knowledge and skills. They are then asked to demonstrate what they learned. The teachers observe and provide feedback based on their assessment of the practical demonstration.

    Montessori believes that standardized teaching and grades are not a good way to measure progress because each child learns differently. They should not be expected to finish a task all at the same time. Also, tests and grades put pressure on children and affect their confidence.

    Mistakes are Part of the Learning Process

    In Montessori, children do not get a demerit if they make mistakes. Mistakes are encouraged because it is the best way for children to learn.

    Through mistakes, children learn about cause and effect, learn new approaches and techniques, and simply gain a deeper understanding of how things work.

    Montessori children learn to persist by making mistakes, build on their strengths, and continue learning despite challenges put in their way.


    Can Montessori children keep up with academic subjects as their regular school counterparts? Yes, in fact, studies show that Montessori children perform better in certain subjects compared to other students from regular schools. The Montessori method may seem like it allows children to do anything they want. That is not the case. The Montessori classroom is designed with activity stations and learning materials that will allow them to learn academics as well as practical skills through hands-on experiences.

    What is the grading system of Montessori schools? Montessori does not use a grading system. It has an assessment method that measures children’s understanding of subjects that is practical and holistic.


    Montessori schools work differently from traditional schools. They allow children to move freely while learning through independent experiential learning. The Montessori classroom is divided into different activity areas and the teachers act as observers and guides. The Montessori materials are open-ended and the curriculum is adaptable.

    The Montessori method works. Just look at all the Montessori-educated business moguls, artists, and world leaders. More than becoming great leaders and powerful people, Montessori education aims at helping children become happy, content, and good adults.

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    How do Montessori schools work? Learn about how Montessori schools help children learn, grow, develop, and how the Montessori philosophy works.