This week, in a discussion that I attended, I received feedback that parents often struggle with how to ask the question, “what is Montessori?” This got me thinking about what my own ‘Montessori elevator speech’ is, and I thought I’d share it with you. Having said that, I do encourage you to come up with your own Montessori elevator speech. It will be different for everyone. Take the time to design it – what gets you fired up about Montessori education?
To me Montessori is about the very best way to prepare our children for the skills needed in the 21st century economic milieu. We know that jobs in the 21st century are different than at any time in our history. A multitude of reports come out regularly showing us that the workforce is increasingly looking vastly different than ever before.
Our children need to be prepared with the skills necessary for a new world. Jobs are no longer automated – computerised systems have taken over those automated jobs – for the most part. Research tells us that our students need to be prepared for the 4 c’s, desired by employees: critical, thinking, collaboration, creativity, communication. You cannot learn this by being told what to do at every minute of the day. Your passions, self-motivation, communication skills and problem solving cannot be taught in snippets between the rigidity of traditional schooling. This is what we do, we prepare an environment where each child’s passions are encouraged. Where they are planned for individually and they learn at their own pace. Children are given lessons which include problems to be solved in groups, exercising on an ongoing basis their communication skills, collaborative learning and creative problem solving. They practice critical thinking all day, every day in school. Our schools environment fosters self-discipline, responsibility, creative thinking (thinking ‘outside the box’) and individuality. Our classrooms look and feel similar to 21st century workplaces. What we have been doing for over 100 years, the rest of the education industry is just catching up with now. Tell your friends – google ‘21st century education’ – because that is what we do. Traditional schools are struggling with these concepts. We have been doing it for 100 years – because Maria Montessori observed and recognised the way that children learn. They learn experientially. We don’t teach them best by breaking their spirit and micro-managing them. We allow them to construct their own knowledge, solve their own problems and work collaboratively and creatively. Montessori is the epitome of best practice.
Tell your friends and family to book in to the school for an observation – because to truly understand Montessori, you have to see it in action. Then try and do an observation in a traditional school. Ha! They don’t let you. We are proud of what we do. We know it is the best, and we therefore open our doors and let anyone come and see what best practice is in action.
Watch the video below – it is fabulous!
I am passionate about this subject. Come and have a chat to me – but beware, I can talk for hours on this topic!
Look at what big companies are looking for today. As an example, see below:
From Google’s recruitment website:
Four things we look for:
We’ll want to know how you’ve flexed different muscles in different situations in order to mobilize a team. This might be by asserting a leadership role at work or with an organization, or by helping a team succeed when you weren’t officially appointed as the leader.
How You Think
We’re less concerned about grades and transcripts and more interested in how you think. We’re likely to ask you some role-related questions that provide insight into how you solve problems. Show us how you would tackle the problem presented--don’t get hung up on nailing the “right” answer.
We’re looking for people who have a variety of strengths and passions, not just isolated skill sets. We also want to make sure that you have the experience and the background that will set you up for success in your role. For engineering candidates in particular, we’ll be looking to check out your coding skills and technical areas of expertise.
We want to get a feel for what makes you, well, you. We also want to make sure this is a place you’ll thrive, so we’ll be looking for signs around your comfort with ambiguity, your bias to action and your collaborative nature
Have a great weekend and feel free to share your Montessori elevator speech with me!