The Montessori Nursery School in Murrayfield will shortly be welcoming children aged 6–12 as we extend our outstanding Montessori provision beyond the early years.
Supported by a caring and highly experienced team, the children will follow the world-renowned Montessori curriculum while also meeting the standards of the Scottish Government’s Curriculum for Excellence. Children aged 6-12 will have opportunities in Art, Nature, Spanish and PE, as they develop academic learning, interpersonal skills, empathy, resilience, joy, and a thirst to discover more.
For more information and to register interest, contact: -
“Free the child's potential, and you will transform them into the world.” ~ Maria Montessori
Have you ever looked for a different educational experience for your child? Something more than the traditional approach?
Montessori education is already famously known around the world for its amazing approach with the early years aged 3-6, the period during which most of the child’s brain development takes place! BUT it doesn’t stop there. There are over 20,000 Montessori schools for all ages around the world. Let us share how the Montessori approach builds on the foundation of the early years and how a Montessori experience for children aged 6 – 12 years compares to traditional methods of education.
“Montessori education creates intellectually curious and independent young problem solvers.” ~ Montessori Rising documentary.
The features of a Montessori classroom for ages 6-12 are distinct because they are designed around the child’s holistic stage of development. In traditional education, the child’s journey is designed around academic competence. With more freedom to cater directly to the whole child, the Montessori student will experience greater agency, responsibility, and sociability in their daily classroom experience.
The child must learn with greater effort in this stage of development.
Where, in their early years, they had a heightened interest in the factual world as they “absorbed” everything around them, this is replaced with a sensitive period for imaginative thinking and their creativity soars!
They now show a strong drive for moral order and are hooked on looking inward while they sort out values like justice, fairness, and social norms.
They benefit from a heightened capability for intellectual independence as this is the age when children are most naturally drawn to learn academically.
Now that their sense of self is established from the early years, they are motivated to learn through collaboration and have an innate desire to be social.
Most of us have experience of traditional style primary education where children are under the active instruction and control of adults. However, this often leaves children less trusting of their own inner abilities as the emphasis is on ensuring they meet defined results set by others. Researchers have witnessed that many students in traditional education systems sadly become disillusioned with learning as a result. They can find learning less engaging and fun while undergoing pressure to learn things to pass tests that are frequently imposed upon them.
For 21st Century life, we all know that key skills include being able to think outside the box, have critical thinking skills, work collaboratively with others, have high organisational and communication skills as well as initiative and self-discipline. These are skills that a Montessori education cultivates and promotes along with responsibilities as guardians of the planet, and respect for and kindness to all.
“Modern education is premised strongly on materialistic values. Yet, as I often point out, it is vital that when educating our children’s brains, we do not neglect to educate their hearts, and a key element of educating their hearts has to be nurturing their compassionate nature.” ~ The Dalai Lama
Dr Maria Montessori was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize
in 1949, 1950 and 1951.
For a child aged 6-12 to really understand things, it is supremely important that they enjoy and connect with what they are learning. This drives both self-motivation and esteem resulting in a healthy inner confidence and respect in themselves, and an understanding of their own wellbeing - now and into the future. Therefore, it is interesting that, in comparison to traditional education, Montessori schools encourage children to pursue interests which actively engage them, and not to all follow the same line of topic or approach as each other. Teachers act as guides who encourage the children to discover more inside and outside the classroom, support them to delve deeper, and support each child’s individual journey of discovering the world about them, honing their natural curiosity, joy, and love of learning for life.
Above all, a Montessori school offers a caring environment prepared specifically to aid children towards success in adulthood — or, in a former Montessori student’s poetic words,
“...for making children sensitive to the beauties of the world and awakening their curiosity regarding the secrets of life." ~ Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Montessori versus Traditional education
for children aged 6-12 and the benefits that children will enjoy.(1)
(commonly found in private and council schools):
Same age: Children are grouped by their age and change classrooms every year.
Teacher-led: Students must keep pace with teacher, who directs what is learned each day.
Rigid curriculum with subjects taught in short daily increments: Content is exchanged from teacher to class according to an hourly schedule.
Rote memorization: To keep pace with the class and teacher, students must learn to memorize content quickly.
Frequent homework, quizzing, and standardized testing: Since classroom subjects are studied in specific, short periods of the school day, children take on heavy homework and testing to practice what they didn’t get to retain during school.
Rewards and punishments used as quick-fix behavioural tools: Uniformity is often emphasized over individuality, with less time to dedicate to long-term social and emotional skills.
Movement is treated as a break from learning: Hands-on work and flexible seating may be offered, but children are largely expected to sit and listen for extended periods, and bigger movement is reserved for recess.
Multi-age: Children are grouped according to stage of development, changing classrooms every three years.
Child-led: Each student learns at their own pace, and the teacher serves as a guide ready to support individual areas of struggle – or extend advanced lessons for mastery.
Structured curriculum with long, open-ended work periods: Structured academics are thoughtfully sequenced, but the child is given more agency and time to self-discover at their interest level and readiness.
Experiential learning: Students learn by doing with self-correcting, hands-on materials and real-world application.
Little to no homework and quizzing: The autonomy for each student to focus at school eliminates the need to “catch up” after school.
Holistic social and emotional skills proactively nurtured: Montessori emphasizes inner discipline and life skills alongside academics – eliminating the need for external reward and punishment systems.
Movement is considered a core part of how children learn: Children freely move, collaborate, and socialize in their classrooms, with options on where to work, with who, and for how long. There are no rows of desks.
The following videos provide helpful visual comparisons of both approaches: -
How will my Montessori child adapt to traditional education when that time comes?
Teaching our children to adjust to change without undue fear and anxiety is one of life’s important lessons…for all children, Montessori-educated or otherwise. But here is the advantage for Montessori students: the Montessori Method is all about developing such coping tools through building confidence, independence, and problem-solving skills. As a result, most Montessori students are actually more adaptable than their non-Montessori peers.
Academically, research shows that Montessori children do better on benchmark tests than students in traditional schools. (2:a,b,c,d)
When it comes to social transitions, again the Montessori students have an edge. Children in Montessori classrooms have learned principles such as courtesy, respect, positive decision-making, conflict resolution, and more. These skills serve them well as they adjust to new schools and meet new people.
"The Montessori educational approach might be the surest route to joining the creative elite, which are so over-represented by the school’s alumni that one might suspect a Montessori Mafia. Is there something going on here? Is there something about the Montessori approach that nurtures creativity and inventiveness that we can all learn from?" ~ The Wall Street Journal
New school opening August 2022!
For more information and to register interest, contact: -
Famous Montessorians: -
Larry Page and Sergey Brin - Founders of Google
Jeff Bezos - Founder of Amazon.com
Bill Gates - Former chief executive and chairman of Microsoft, and one of the best-known entrepreneurs of the personal computer revolution.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez - Nobel Prize-winning novelist
Anne Frank - Famous child diarist from World War II
Prince William and Prince Harry - Sons of Charles, Prince of Wales
Joshua Bell – Classical violinist
Beyonce Knowles - Singer
Taylor Swift - Singer
Melissa and Sarah Gilbert - Actresses
Puff Daddy - Sean P Diddy Combs - famous rapper
Julia Child - First TV chef
Helen Hunt - Academy award winning actor
George Clooney - Academy award winning actor
Peter Drucker - The inventor of modern management
Jean Piaget - Swiss psychologist known for his work on child development who became the president of the Montessori society.
John & Joan Cusack – Actor and screenwriter, and academy award-nominated actor
Katharine Graham – Pulitzer prize-winning author and former owner & editor of the Washington Post, USA
Ann Sullivan - Helen's Keller's teacher, used Montessori ideas to teacher her famous student
Erik Erikson -The Danish-German-American psychologist and psychoanalyst known for his theory on human social development. He loved Montessori ideas so much that he trained as a Montessori teacher
Jimmy Wales - Developer of Wikipedia
David Blaine - Illusionist, endurance artist, and extreme performer. (Also sent his children to a Montessori school)
Chelsea Clinton - Daughter of Bill & Hillary Clinton
Dakota Fanning - Academy award nominated actor
Will Wright - Computer game designer and original designer of The Sims
Famous Supporters of the Method: -
The Dalai Lama and Tibetan Education in India. Montessori education is followed in all Tibetan schools. The Montessori Centre at TCV, Dharamsala in India coordinates and guides all the Tibetan schools in the Montessori method as well as adapting the system into the Tibetan language. The Tibetan Education Policy adopted the Montessori approach as its pre-primary level school education.
Jeff Bezos launched a network of “Montessori-inspired” preschools in September 2018 as part of his non-profit organization Bezos Academy. The schools are built in low-income communities and designed for children from low income families, offering them access to free programs.
Alexander Graham Bell - Inventor of the telephone, and his wife Mabel founded the Montessori Education Association in 1913. They also helped establish the first Montessori classroom in Canada and one of the first in the United States
President Woodrow Wilson, former President of the United States from 1913 to 1921 - Creator and leading advocate of the League of Nations, for which he was awarded the 1919 Nobel Prize for Peace. Leader of giving women the right to vote, and seeking public support for the Treaty of Versailles that ended World War 1. Wilson had a Montessori classroom installed in the basement of the White House during his term of office for staff to send their children to and his daughter trained as a Montessori teacher. Margaret Wilson was on the committee that brought Dr Montessori to the USA in 1915.
Thomas Edison - Inventor of the incandescent light bulb, started four Montessori schools in the USA.
a 185014822(1) “New research suggests that children who attend Montessori schools may have an edge over other children in terms of both academic and social development.” http://ageofmontessori.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/1850148221.jpg
b Study Shows Improved Test Scores for Students in Montessori Schools--“New research suggests that children who attend Montessori schools may have an edge over other children in terms of both academic and social development.”
c Evaluating Montessori Education--“…when strictly implemented, Montessori education fosters social and academic skills that are equal or superior to those fostered by a pool of other types of schools.”
d Outcomes for Students in a Montessori Program--“In essence, attending a Montessori program from the approximate age of three to eleven predicts significantly higher mathematics and science standardized test scores in high school.”