WSM Education Blog Archives

Oct 12

Care of the Earth & Outdoor Environment

‘Care of environment’ exercises foster love for the environment, help children connect and engage with nature, and encourage the child to interact with the environment, exhibiting respect and love.  Such exercises also help the child form a connection with their … Continue reading

Oct 04

Intrinsic Motivation in a Montessori Classroom!

Intrinsic motivation is the heart of a Montessori classroom. Children are born with innate curiosity and the desire to learn. At West Side Montessori, we respect and nurture a child’s natural curiosity.   

Oct 01

Why Observe Your Child’s Classroom?

Observing your child during a typical day in his/her classroom is a valuable tool to see your child’s learning process in action and for understanding the unique qualities of the Montessori Method.  We believe that, “Education is a natural process … Continue reading

Oct 01

Setting limits, Montessori-style

Setting Limits

When my son was a toddler he hated leaving places. So I would begin to dread when it was time to go home. I’d be thinking, “how am I going to get him to leave soon?” No matter how long … Continue reading

Sep 23

What are the Sensitive Periods?

Nearly one hundred years ago, Dr. Maria Montessori discovered that children are self-motivated to learn from their environments. Borrowing ideas from biologists and philosophers of her day, Montessori proposed that each child carries within him two sorts of genetic designs – … Continue reading

Sep 20

West Side Montessori Celebrates Peace!

“If we are among the men of good will who yearn for peace, we must lay the foundation for peace ourselves, by working for the social world of the child.” — Dr. Maria Montessori

Sep 14

Why is Isolation of Difficulty Important in a Montessori Classroom?

The signature of all Montessori education is equipping children to be self-sufficient, almost as if they are teaching themselves. In our tradition, we have a little secret to this learning style, and it’s called the Isolation of Difficulty. So, what does … Continue reading

Sep 12

The Normalized Classroom

The beginning of the school year can be compared to giant waves crashing into the seashore.   A third of the class is new to the classroom. There may be a few children who cry as they learn to separate … Continue reading

Sep 06

What Are Montessori Puzzle Maps?

Puzzle Map

Puzzle maps are the child’s introduction to the world we live in. Starting with the map of the world and progressing through continents and then countries, the puzzle maps showcase the difference between land and water, and help to develop … Continue reading

Sep 06

Respect and Resolution in Montessori School!

Children Running Together

Montessori students learn to celebrate their differences. It’s not unusual to find a very diverse group of students in a Montessori school, and the differences among them can be cultural, physical — even cognitive. Regardless of those differences, we believe … Continue reading

Sep 04

Cultivating Emotional Intelligence in Montessori

When we take the time to skillfully respond to children who are upset, we help them integrate their brains, develop their emotional intelligence, and practice communication skills that will last a lifetime.

Sep 03

Peace Education in the Montessori Classroom

Montessori Peace Table

In our modern world, it is so easy to get sucked into conflict – online, on the news, with our family and friends. It is important that at a very young age, we begin to learn how to settle our … Continue reading

Aug 26

What are the Montessori Binomial and Trinomial Cubes?

Montessori Trinomial Cube

THE TRINOMIAL CUBE There are so many layers to Montessori. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the simplicity and elegance of the trinomial cube. While the primary aim may seem rather obvious, to build a little puzzle in a … Continue reading

Aug 24

4 Reasons Why Montessori Classrooms are Engaging Environments!

An authentic Montessori classroom is anything but ordinary, but it should always be these four things: • Appealing: students should be magnetized to work that provokes their imagination • Accessible: low shelving and easy to reach objects promote interaction early on • Instructive: individualized instruction in … Continue reading

Aug 19

Math…the Montessori way!

Montessori Math

When parents observe my Lower Elementary classroom, I often hear the same idea expressed. “I wish I had learned math this way! Maybe I would like math more.” While I personally loved math, I often questioned why or how or … Continue reading

Aug 12

Montessori Materials: Addition Snake Game

Montessori Math Beads

What is the Addition Snake Game? The Addition Snake Game is a fun and exciting way for children to begin memorizing addition facts. The goal of this work is to turn the colorful snake into a golden snake by counting … Continue reading

Jun 08

Staff Spotlight Post: Ali Packo

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?  Your background, your interests, your dreams. I started my teaching career in the public school system.  I spent eight years teaching in the elementary classroom. Then, I took the opportunity to … Continue reading

May 11

Order in Montessori!

There’s a well-known trope that children are chaotic. They’re busy, screaming, messy. We can’t wait for them to grow up because then we’ll have some sense of order back in our lives. However, anyone who has spent time around children, … Continue reading

May 04

Staff Spotlight Post: Brandi Parcell

Q: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Your background, your interests, your dreams? I have two children whom both attend West Side beginning at 13 months old. Holden is going to be in Kindergarten next year and … Continue reading

Apr 27

Failure IS an Option!

Failure IS an Option! It sounds counter-intuitive to suggest that parents should allow their children to fail, but hear me out. Parents often want to protect their children from “the mistakes I made.” This is especially true of children past … Continue reading

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