Dear Jarrow Parents,
Our staff is often engaged in conversation regarding the deep work of Montessori. The Montessori approach to education is unique because it is not based on educational theory or limited to academic precepts. It is founded on the cycles of human development and calls us to offer curriculum and practices that respect and honor the sacred evolution of human life.
In developing her approach to education, Dr. Montessori delineated Planes of Development that include needs and tendencies of humans in the areas of social, moral, cognitive and emotional development. The task of education, Dr. Montessori believed, is to serve the fullness of the child at each stage of development. This integration of approach makes for complex and fulfilling days in our classrooms and ongoing challenges for our teachers who believe there is no higher purpose than Education for Life.
I recently overheard a group of Primary children in conversation with their teachers. The topic of discussion was the peaceful morning they had shared. It was a simple exchange of observations and compliments among the children, noting how someone had respected someone else’s work, how one child had helped another, that another said she felt “so peaceful she could really concentrate” and someone else said, “It was just plain nice”.
It’s wonderful that moments like this are not unusual at our school, but what brings them to an even higher level is our teachers’ ability to raise awareness by helping our children name and articulate their observations and their feelings. These are the early seeds of self-awareness and consciousness that are sewn throughout our program at varying levels of sophistication. This is the deep work of Montessori and this is where the “noble search for grand philosophical truths” begins.
With respect and gratitude,
Mary Zeman, Interim Head of School
Mercedes Dugan, Interim Associate Head of School
on behalf of our faculty and staff