Alongside our bilingual education model, another core pillar of an IMA education is the Montessori methodology. This philosophy that has withstood the test of time and is well-recognized and researched as being a catalyst for creating independent and confident young learners. Because of this, Montessori was a seamless fit with IMA’s mission.
What is Montessori?
Montessori is a unique child-focused method of education. Montessori classrooms utilize specially designed learning materials, and constitutes a collaborative, exploratory environment.
Dr. Maria Montessori, a physician, educator and acclaimed innovator pushed the boundaries of thought to develop a program that cultivates the natural desires of a learner. Rooted in the pursuit of building upon a child’s innate curiosity, children move through a thoughtful continuum that fosters independence and the acquisition or social, emotional and academic skills.
Top Principles of Montessori
Carried Out at Our Schools in Bellevue & Seattle
Role of the Teacher
Teachers are both guides and facilitators in the classroom.
Children are provided with opportunities that allow for choice, while boundaries are in place to ensure that a multi-disciplinary curriculum is carried forward at just the right time.
Overall, the role of the teacher is to spark interest and awe when presenting engagements and concepts to the children, with the hope of instilling lifelong passions and habits. Concepts begin in a concrete state and the child moves to an abstract understanding.
Montessori classrooms are typically multi-age environments that break into a Toddler, Primary and Elementary cycle. Multi-age classrooms allow for learning groups to be orchestrated that can meet each child’s area of need.
Working independently, or with similarly leveled pairs, areas of growth are supported while also challenging a child’s potential.
Children can observe and learn from that which peers model, while also taking opportunities of leadership with younger peers. In conclusion, empathetic, calm and peaceful environments emerge.
Multi-Age Programs at IMA
Moving at a pace that is comfortable for the child, teachers follow a sequential order and take children from concrete to abstract thinking. Mathematics is divided into six categories- counting and the decimal system, memory work, concrete abstraction, arithmetic tables and geometry. Utilizing manipulates and repetition, children become confident in problem-solving, computing, and recall.