mentor

Are You a Montessori Mentor?

After 28 years in Montessori, in which I have held nearly every type of position, including assistant, lead guide, mentor, school administrator, teacher trainer, and now international professional development provider, I have had ample time for reflection on my goal of bringing high-fidelity Montessori education to the world.     What has struck me as a…

Reframe Your Approach to Peace

I’ll never forget the wonder I experienced during my 3-6 training when learning about Montessori education as a means of creating world peace.  The idea that our youngest children have the potential to transform humanity when we nurture their spirit and expose them to tools for gaining inner peace and the guidance to resolve conflicts…

zzzzzs

Z is for Zzzzzs Zip Up Memories

It’s interesting to me that we rarely talk about sleep as is related to learning other than to notice when a student is cranky and indicates they didn’t get enough, or a parent asks how to get their child down at night, or a student falls asleep while working.  What I hadn’t known until recently…

x is for excitement

X is for eXcitement eXcels Learners

Excitement as is related to learning is defined as a heightened state of physiological arousal exemplified by an increased heart rate and blood pressure, and higher emotional and attention.     What many educators are not as aware of is how excitement can be harnessed to accelerate learning, and how Montessori educators have built-in mechanisms…

W is for Worked Examples Work Wonders

When a teacher demonstrates how to do a procedural task, like a math problem, going through the sequence of steps to the solution, this is known as a worked example.     Worked Examples Work   Our daughter learned to play the guitar primarily from watching Youtube videos!  This is a perfect example of how…

V is for Visualization

V is for Visualization Validates Ideas

Visualization relies on humans unique ability to harness their imagination and create a representation of an abstract idea.  There are many permutations of visualization, yet I’m going to focus in on the strategies known to enhance learning.   Visualization is a Spatial Representation   External visualizations help learners process information.  Think about how quickly learners…

U is for Undoing

U is for Undoing Uncovers Misconceptions

Sometimes the process of learning involves unlearning mistaken understandings and correcting misconceptions.     Undoing Errors May be Less Necessary in Montessori   Montessori environments are unique learning places in which to make mistakes. Our youngest learners rely on hands-on didactic materials in which they gain impressions of concepts including identifying mistakes when the error…

T is for Teaching

T is for Teaching Targets Learning

George Bernard Shaw couldn’t have been further from the truth when he wrote, “ “He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches.” In fact, teaching assists you in acquiring “chains of connected ideas” that deepen your understanding of the material at hand!   Teaching is a Set of Conditions   When asked why I shifted…

S is for self-explanation

S is for Self-Explanation Serves Learning

You might have heard that really smart people talk to themselves.  Wonder why? It might be because they use a neuro strategy of self-explanation that serves their learning and improves comprehension!     Self-Explanation is Self-Instruction   Self-explanation is simply a method of self-instruction of talking through a procedure or making connections of what is…