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Authentic Montessori with Experienced Montessori Teachers

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AMI Diploma = Authentic Montessori?

Dear Parents,

We want to take a moment to clarify a common misconception about the AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) Diploma. While the AMI Diploma is globally respected for its authenticity and high standards, it does not, by itself, ensure that a school or a teacher is implementing authentic Montessori methods. Nor is it equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree in Education.

The truth is, building an authentic Montessori environment goes beyond the credentials of an individual teacher or the reputation of a school. It requires the collective effort of a community: teachers, apprentices, staff, parents, children, and institutional leadership. All stakeholders must be committed to fostering an authentic Montessori environment. This extends beyond the school premises, permeating the very homes of our students, making parent education a critical component of the process.

It’s important to note that the current AMI training landscape may not always live up to its historic reputation. AMI trained teachers often face challenges in classroom management due to limited hands-on experience and observation hours in a real classroom. Further, not all AMI trained teachers are universally recognized as certified teachers in numerous countries. In recent years, the comprehensive, hands-on Montessori training that older AMI-trained teachers received has been significantly diluted. The emergence of online courses, offering minimal practical experience and lacking in year-long apprenticeships, has led to a focus on commerce over quality.

Instead of emphasizing the AMI Diploma, we prioritize teachers with extensive experience, capable of not only imparting knowledge but also training others. It’s important to note that AMI certified teachers are not universally qualified to train others—a fact stated on every AMI Diploma.

To ensure high-quality Montessori education, a teacher must be capable, authorized, and willing to train others.

At Rainbow Montessori, we highly value the integration of parents into our daily Montessori activities. Parent reviews reflect our commitment to this vital element of the Montessori approach. Our methodology provides a comprehensive framework for each child’s unique developmental journey, regardless of their socioeconomic status.

Beyond AMI, there are numerous Montessori training institutions producing exceptional educators equipped to lead a real kindergarten classroom. Approved teachers, using the principles of Montessori education, foster an environment that is hands-on, self-paced, collaborative, and joyful, regardless of the location.

We believe that the quality of Montessori education relies heavily on an active, involved community and experienced teachers dedicated to fostering an authentic learning environment. It is this focus that truly distinguishes a meaningful Montessori experience.

Thank you for your understanding and support in our shared vision for your children’s educational journey.

Best regards,

Your Rainbow Team 

5 Core Components of Montessori Education

TRAINED MONTESSORI TEACHERS

An experienced and credentialed Montessori teacher has the skills and expertise to implement high-fidelity Montessori.

THE MULTI-AGE CLASSROOM

Classes with 3-year age spans facilitate mentorship among the students and encourage leadership development.

USING MONTESSORI MATERIALS

Specially designed Montessori materials provide a hands-on approach to learning and follow the principles taught by Maria Montessori.

CHILD-DIRECTED WORK

Students are encouraged to self-select work, leading to intrinsic motivation and sustained attention.

UNINTERRUPTED WORK PERIODS

An extended period of 3 hours of “free choice” enables students to work at their own pace and without interruption.

Curriculum

Reading/Writing

Children in a Montessori environment learn to write first, before they learn to read.

This approach is organic, as children are able to put the letters for the sounds they know together into a word before they are ready to interpret and string together the sounds of a word on a page.

Math/Science

The Montessori Math includes the development of concepts such as numeration, place value, fractions, and the basic operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division using numbers up to 9999.

Maria Montessori believed that people are naturally inclined to create order, to organize, to observe relationships and quantify patterns. With the proper guidance and nurturing, everyone can develop the ability to reason and to calculate.

Art

Art is one of the many ways children express themselves. Art is a way for children to communicate their feelings. It is through art that children develop their fine motor skills. In the Montessori environment, we provide open-ended art activities that help children explore and use their creativity.

"If we try to think back to the dim and distant past... what is it that helps us reconstruct those times, and to picture the lives of those who lived in them? It is their art... It is thanks to the hand, the companion of the mind, that civilization has arisen."
—Maria Montessori, The Absorbent Mind

Critical Thinking

The Montessori environment promotes problem-solving and critical thinking skills in a variety of ways. With each piece of material that is presented to the child, there are problem-solving skills that are required to master the work. 

Within each material, there is an underlying problem-solving skill also known as the control of error. The control of error is the point when a child acknowledges the fact they have done something wrong when working with the materials. They then must go back, deconstruct the work, and see where they made a mistake. This control of error allows for problem-solving skills and critical thinking skills to work together as a whole.