Brooksfield School is a Montessori school founded on shared experiences and a joy for life and learning. We employ outstanding teachers, specialists, administrators and assistants who dedicate themselves to inspiring and nurturing the children every single day.
Over 30 years, Brooksfield has refined its vision of what a Montessori school should offer children. Our focus on art, nature, and mindfulness enhances the Montessori principles at the heart of the curriculum. Let’s take a look at those principles.
A Montessori School is Student-Run
In a traditional school system, the teacher dictates the lessons of the day and the students follow along, regardless of the pace of learning or how well the student comprehends the material. In a Montessori school, however, the teacher acts as more of a facilitator, while the students learn to work together at different stations. This is proven to be a great method for teaching kids valuable social skills that involve sharing and respecting each other.
Everything in the classroom is centered around the children. All the physical tools, playful toys, and learning objects are placed within easy reach, and the furniture is set up so that kids can use them comfortably. By having everything within their reach and geared to their specific needs, kids can learn at their own pace. This way, children increase their own knowledge when they are mentally and physically ready to do so.
A Montessori School is Hands-On
This is particularly important in the early years of the child's development — children are very literal in their learning methods, and consequently, require a more tactile method to fully understand things. Abstract learning, then, will not serve the child any good — and Montessori-style learning does not place the focus on abstract learning.
A Montessori school experience focuses on real activities, rather than abstract thoughts. In other words, kids perform tasks based on real skills that involve language, math, culture and practical life lessons. Teachers also encourage children to focus on their task at hand and discourage interruptions or any other forms of distraction.
They'll engage their senses, stay active throughout the school day, and learn through play whenever possible. In many ways, Montessori learning is more age-appropriate learning. Preschool and early elementary school-aged children simply don't have the development necessary to sit in a desk all day. They need to be able to move around, get their hands dirty, and try out multiple different learning styles as they adapt to the style that works best for them.
A Montessori School is Family-Like
Students are in a classroom with their peers who are about 3 years older — or younger — than they are, and this teaches them to relate to people who are older (or younger) than they are effectively. Older students serve as "big brothers/big sisters" and mentors for the younger students, which instills a sense of responsibility in the older students, as well as a sense of pride for getting the job done correctly.
A Montessori School Permits Freedom
While the teacher sets the template for the day, the student guides the lesson accordingly. Therefore, if the student is demonstrating that s/he is more advanced than the teacher's initial lesson had planned, then the student will learn a more advanced lesson. In fact, the student will be able to direct the teacher appropriately, regardless of the planned lesson of the day. Of course, the teacher must maintain the parameters.
A Montessori school lets students work at a pace that's appropriate for them. Whether your student is a little ahead of the curve or a little behind, a Montessori school is a great place for them. In a Montessori school, the students can learn at their own pace. They aren't held back while waiting for most of the class to catch up or forced to move on to a new task before they're ready. Instead, they can work at the pace that works for them. Many Montessori students find, as a result, that they have both a more solid understanding of the material and a better grasp of when they fully comprehend a subject.
A Montessori School Boosts Creativity
Because kids are empowered to choose their own activities, they end up enjoying the process rather than focusing too much on the result, which can lead to frustration if they don't produce their desired outcome. This is a primary reason why teachers serve more as guides than directors in a Montessori environment. The teacher is there more to guide your child through the process, rather than direct an appropriate outcome. What all this amounts to is the children end up enjoying the process so much that creativity is a natural and almost unavoidable result.
A Montessori School Provides Order
Everything in the learning environment has an assigned place. All the objects must be returned by the children to their proper place when activities are completed. This discipline teaches your child the importance of good organization and contributes to your child's inherent desire for orderly surroundings. This will facilitate creativity even further because less time is spent on removing or working around clutter and more time is used on the task at hand.
A Montessori School Gets Results
Previous studies have concluded that Montessori kindergarteners perform better in math and reading than their public school counterparts. While this may seem like a relatively minor thing at such a young age, the value of giving your child a head start cannot be overstated. By introducing your child to the advantage of these enhanced skills so early, they can quickly latch on to more challenging opportunities that may present themselves as their education continues.
A study of Milwaukee public school students suggested that children who had learned in the Montessori system until sixth grade had higher mathematics and science skills than their public school-educated counterparts.
A Montessori School Teaches Self-Regulation
Through the implementation of valuable ground rules, kids learn self-discipline and emotional control at a young age, which serves them well in developing crucial social skills later on. This allows children to not only self-assess, but also to critically analyze their work.
Through the implementation of valuable ground rules, kids learn self-discipline and emotional control at a young age, which serves them well in developing crucial social skills later on. In addition to teachers imposing the ground rules, other students are also encouraged to impose them when appropriate as well.
A Montessori School Develops a Love of Learning
Traditional schools tend to discourage children from that enjoyment from their very earliest days in the classroom. When they're required to sit down behind a desk each day, spending most of their class time finishing worksheets, these students find themselves disengaged, disinterested, and longing for the day to be over. In a Montessori school, students aren't trapped behind desks. Instead, they're able to explore multi-sensory forms of learning and engage their senses to fully embrace the educational process.
Many children never learn how to seek out information on their own. If it's not presented to them by a teacher, preferably either in lecture or book format, they're probably never going to find the information. A Montessori school, on the other hand, encourages taking that learning to the next level. Your child will, simply put, learn how to truly learn, rather than just absorbing information that's been presented by a teacher.
Because a Montessori education offers more opportunity for individual exploration, your child will be able to fully explore their own skills and take the time to develop them further. Instead of being restricted by the interests, attitudes, and skills of their classmates, your child will be able to take their own unique gifts and learn more about them. That doesn't mean that they won't ever have to do the things that they're bad at, though! A Montessori education is a well-rounded one that provides students with all the building blocks they will need later in the educational process.
For many young students, a Montessori education is a fantastic foundation that will carry them a long way in life. The long-term benefits are incomparable and well worth the extra effort in the classroom. If you're thinking about Montessori school for your child, it's time to take the next step. Schedule a tour for more information about what a Montessori education can do for your child.