Posts filed under Resources

Creating a Culture of Respect and Collaboration With Parents

"The principles of grace and courtesy are based in respect. During our Montessori training, we become conscious of what it means to “respect the child” and we begin the process of inculcating this respect so that it may infuse all of our interactions with children. As time passes, this becomes second nature, at least with the children in our community. As we grow and develop as Montessori teachers, these “habits of mind” necessarily extend to frame our work with parents and other professionals so that we can create a culture of respect and collaboration that surrounds the child with love and support."

So begins the recent NAMTA Journal article written by Sarah Werner Andrews, Director of Primary Training at MNW. In it, Sarah describes the concept and process of building cooperative relations between the parents and the school. She speaks about the perception of the teacher and parents as each being unique and particular to the life and personality of each child. How the teacher must see the positive in the child and have a natural respect and dignity so both want to act for the greater good and, likewise, must treat the parents as wanting to make their own contribution to their child as part of the whole-child community. Finally, suggesting that diverse views of the same child are one of the most valuable offerings of a school. Click here to read the entire article.

Further reading: Tending the Light: Essays on Montessori Education by John R. Snyder.  John describes in powerful, deep, and lovely language the philosophy, theory, and practice of his Montessori years. He has developed his work with children and with their parents, with guides and with support staff, and with mentors, consultants, and administrators both at Austin Montessori School and beyond. Through his collected writings-writings for this school, as well as for conferences and professional publications-not only Montessorians but all who care about the lives of children can find a source of information, inspiration, and guidance. Click here to purchase a copy of Tending the Light.

Don't miss out on inspiring articles like Sarah's, become a member of NAMTA today

Posted on March 20, 2015 and filed under From MNW Staff, Resources.


The holidays are approaching – ushering in a frequently scary season for Montessori teachers. We often have conflicted feelings around holidays and events that occur in the larger culture – afraid that these distract children from their work, disrupt the calm and productive atmosphere in the environment, and are just plain bothersome to us. I’d like to propose changing those feelings and finding ways to see these popular culture events as positive elements in the environment and exploring ways to channel them in support of each child’s development.

Posted on December 5, 2014 and filed under Elementary, Assistants to Infancy, Primary, Resources, From MNW Staff.

Thoughtful Holiday Gift Ideas

Do you want to avoid succumbing to consumer madness during the holidays? Do you have a hard time thinking of meaningful gifts to give to family and friends?  If so, here’s a list of thoughtful things you can do with or for loved ones without breaking the bank or camping out in a parking lot for three days.

Posted on December 5, 2014 and filed under Resources, From MNW Staff.

Adele Diamond talks TEDx

Adele Diamond, Ph.D., neuroscientist, psychologist and educational innovator, is one of the world's leading researchers in developmental science--and a great advocate for Montessori. She studies how executive functions can be modified by the environment, modulated by genetics and neurochemistry, become derailed in certain disorders, and can be improved by effective programs and interventions.

Posted on December 1, 2014 and filed under Primary, Resources, From MNW Staff.

The "Practice Society"

Children in the second plane have what Montessori described as a “special sensitivity for the acquisition of culture.” This understanding was at the core of the discussion during Elise Huneke-Stone’s recent NAMTA workshop in Seattle: The “Practice Society.” Participants in this workshop looked at how the elementary classroom offers children an invaluable opportunity to use their reasoning minds and imaginations to explore how communities live, work, and create their own culture.

Posted on November 24, 2014 and filed under Elementary, Resources, From MNW Staff.