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Once considered an educational experiment, Montessori is increasingly becoming the blueprint for a new approach to learning—one that’s demonstrating long-term success in both private and public U.S. schools. Montessori’s core tenets, that effective learning is self-directed and that education calls for development of the “whole person,” are shaping a generation uniquely prepared for the demands of the 21st century.

Montessori is not an adaptation of traditional methods; it is a completely different way of teaching and learning. The foundation of Montessori education is a model of the child as a motivated doer, rather than an empty vessel. The 8 principles below are deeply ingrained in the Montessori system and will best prepare our young people for a complex and fast-changing world.


8 Principles of Montessori Education:

  1. Movement and cognition are closely entwined, and movement can enhance thinking and learning.
  2. Learning and well-being are improved when people have a sense of control over their lives.
  3. People learn better when they are interested in what they are learning.
  4. Tying extrinsic rewards to an activity, like money for reading or high grades for tests, negatively impacts motivation to engage in that activity when the reward is withdrawn.
  5. Collaborative arrangements can be very conducive to learning.
  6. Learning situated in meaningful contexts is often deeper and richer than learning in abstract contexts.
  7. Particular forms of adult interaction are associated with more optimal child outcomes.
  8. Order in the environment is beneficial to children.


In addition to a well rounded academic curriculum, Montessori education includes Grace and Courtesy and Social Emotional Learning (SEL) into our students' daily experience. Spanish, Music,  Art, and our Naturalist Program are integrated into the curriculum and supported by Specialty Faculty at both Primary and Elementary levels.

At the Primary Level, our Primary Movement teacher works with small groups of children throughout the week and outdoor playtime takes place on our natural playscape (organically maintained), where it is a safe place to explore, build, ride bikes and climb.

At the Elementary level,  free play takes place down the street at the Terra Linda Rec. Center, and Physical Education is taught throughout the week, focusing on specific skills and team sports. The curriculum also includes an Elementary Swimming Unit once a year. 

After School Specialty Classes including Music, Spanish, Science, Art and other enrichment classes are offered throughout the year.

Learn more about our classrooms and program levels: