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Buran – Our New Learning Environment

By Montessori in Action, The Prepared Environment No Comments
It was exciting to see the children's faces as they stepped into their new Buran environment on Tuesday morning. Buran, means Stringybark in Wannangini (Guringal) language. Uncle Neil, a local Elder advised us on all the naming of our environments. Our new children’s House has been part of our strategic plan to refresh and redevelop our facilities.  The brief began with the words from Maria Montessori: ‘The child should live...
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Making Amends

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
Our children make mistakes. We can help them learn how to make amends. Help children shift from throw-away apologies to repairing the wrong-doing. Mistakes are a part of life. We all make them. Hopefully, we even learn from them! Intellectually we probably understand that mistakes are part of our children’s process of learning and growing. Yet as parents and caregivers, it can be hard to know how to handle situations...
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The Positive Way

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
Positive Discipline aligns well with Montessori philosophy and helps us shift from being punitive or reward-based to being kind and firm at the same time.  We are often asked about how we handle discipline in Montessori. It’s a great question because we think differently about discipline. Ultimately, we want our children to develop self-discipline and to understand how to balance being an individual within a community. We know that children...
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The Montessori Prepared Environment

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
A Montessori prepared environment (classroom) is a place designed to foster children’s learning as well as support their fundamental human tendencies. In Montessori, we talk a lot about the “prepared environment.” Really, though, this concept of a prepared environment isn’t limited to Montessori. In fact, from the earth’s biosphere offering an array of support for life, to the fragrant and colorful flowers existing to lure pollinators, to a woman’s uterus...
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Moving Away from How Was your Day?

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
It can be hard for children to talk about their experiences at school. If we shift our approach, we can often get more insight into our children’s day. When we pick up our children from school, it can be so tempting to ask, “How was your day?” Often the responses are pretty lackluster. As adults, we can likely relate. If a partner or friend asks about our day, our responses...
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Montessori Myths and the Importance of “Real” Montessori

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
We are accustomed to hearing people discuss a variety of Montessori myths, and it’s most often that these misunderstandings come from people who haven’t spent time in a high-fidelity Montessori environment that applies the methods as they were originally intended. The truth is, anyone can call themselves “Montessori”. There’s no trademark on the name, and so it can be pretty misleading to people who are trying to discern what is...
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Independence: The Foundation of Freedom

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
In order to be truly free, we need to be able to make our own choices, which means having the skills and abilities to then act upon our choices. Without independence, we can’t truly be free.   As children’s independence grows, so does their opportunity for freedom. They have more choices available and more to consider. The freedom children experience in our prepared learning environments is directly related to their independence....
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On the Topic of Competition

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
You may have noticed that in Montessori schools, we do not typically encourage competition between children.  Our lack of traditional grading is one obvious marker of this approach, but you will notice that the lack of peer competition threads itself pretty much throughout the entire program.  This is quite intentional, and we work hard to give children a foundation built on competition with oneself, rather than with others.    It is...
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The First Six Years: Conquests of Independence

By Montessori Basics, Montessori Learning No Comments
Throughout their first six years of life, our children achieve many milestones of independence. Let’s take a look at some of these conquests of independence.  As caregivers and parents, we have a bit of a bittersweet role. While we want to keep our children close, we ultimately need to support their path toward independence.   We expect dependence at the beginning. Yet our newborns take their very first step toward independence...
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Kindergarten: The Icing On the Cake

By Montessori Basics, Montessori Learning No Comments
This post is for our Toddler and Pre-School  families (although the families of older students who read it will readily agree and support the points below - ask them when you have a chance!). Some of you were originally drawn to Montessori because you’ve read about how different and special the approach is. Some of you were looking for a high-quality daycare or preschool and stumbled upon us.   There are...
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