As you know, our school is growing very quickly and we now have applications
flowing in at a fast rate. Given the nature of our school, we are often approached by
families with very interesting, intelligent and articulate young people. These children
have often researched Montessori education with their parents and often come well
prepared with questions for me. This week I had one such young person (10 years
old) come in and we had a written exchange. I thought I would share with you the
type of questions I am often asked as well as my responses to them:
Does the school have a canteen? No. Children bring their own healthy lunches and
snacks. However, we do a lot of cooking in our work cycle. Children cut up fruit and
vegetables to share at snack time. Sometimes, children choose to cook a meal to
share with the class. When this happens, they design their menu, find recipes, write
a shopping list, go up to the shops (as a Going Out trip – see below) to do their
shopping, bring it back, cook it, set the table and share the meal with their class.
How is Montessori different from Public School? See this link:
What are the most important subjects in Montessori? In Montessori schools the
subjects that we study are: Maths, English, Geometry, Zoology, Botany, Sport
(PDHPE), History, Geography (which for us includes Science), Music, Grace and
Courtesy (welbeing studies), Art. They are all equally important.
What is the Montessori school bus used for? It is not really used at the moment, for
various reasons. Also, given that we are near a train station, we tend to take the train
for our excursion travel (and sometimes we hire buses as well).
Do children go on excursions? Yes! We go on lots of excursions and also on what
we call ‘Going Out’ trips. Going Out trips are trips designed and organised by
students for small groups based on something that they are studying or a project that
they are working on. For example, you might be studying dinosaurs with a friend and
want to visit the Australian Museum to look at their dinosaur exhibit. You might be
doing this with 2 friends. You might then organise the trip, including figuring out the
cost, how to get their and an adult to go with you. The adult’s job is to ensure your
safety, but they do not help you in any way. The trip is fully designed and executed
by the student. They are lots of fun! We believe that by going out into the world you
are learning independence and responsibility, which we encourage.
Why is there no school uniform? We believe that each child should be respected for
who they are and encouraged to express themselves and their own unique style.
Clothing is one way in which human beings express their individuality.
How does a teacher or the school determine when a student can go up a level on a
subject? A Student’s work is closely monitored by the teacher. When the teacher
sees that the student is ready for the next lesson, they quietly invite the child and
give them that next lesson.
I greatly enjoy my interactions with children. I have various young ‘penpals’ and am
happy to answer any questions from children, anytime.
Have a wonderful weekend!