DCPS Montessori Program
The Montessori Approach
The Montessori approach to education is a method of observing and supporting the early development of children. Based on the teachings of Dr. Maria Montessori, the education of the whole child is taken into consideration. Through the careful institution of a 3-year mixed age group and individualized instruction, a Montessori certified teacher supports the child’s natural desire to learn.
The classroom environment contains unique manipulative materials for development that invite children to engage in learning activities of their own individual choice. Parents can expect to see children working independently with these materials such as the pink tower cubes and the brown stair prisms for depicting various dimensional qualities, sandpaper letters for tracing and learning sounds, and practical living exercises like pouring and polishing for refining motor control and focus.
The children in a Montessori classroom learn by making discoveries with the materials, thereby cultivating concentration, strengthening self-discipline and embracing a love of learning; and the teacher in a Montessori classroom lives by the philosophy “In service of the child.”
Currently, DCPS is pursuing accreditation with Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) for the primary (preschool, pre-K, and Kindergarten) Montessori programs. Accreditation is expected to be complete in March 2012 which would make DCPS primary Montessori the only accredited public program in the District of Columbia. This exciting acknowledgement is an important step to distinguish the quality of the Montessori programs within DCPS and hard work of the schools, teachers, and families.
Montessori education is offered at the following schools: Burrville, Capitol Hill Montessori, Marshall, and Nalle.
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Additional Resources for Families
For additional information and resources about Montessori education, please refer to Association Montessori Internationale.
Additional Resources for AMI Certified Teachers
For additional information about how to become a teacher in a Montessori program at DCPS, visit www.dcps.dc.gov/careers or, email DCPS.Careers@dc.gov.
For information about Montessori programs, contact Bonnie J. Beste, Early Childhood Education Montessori Specialist at Bonnie.Beste@dc.gov.