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Report

The Possibility of Public Montessori Schools: Examining the Montessori philosophy and its prospect in American public schools

Available from: Vanderbilt University Institutional Repository

Americas, Montessori method of education - Criticism, interpretation, etc., North America, Public Montessori, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: In an effort to explore the ways in which Montessori curriculum and public schools are cooperative or mutually exclusive, I will examine the principles of the Montessori philosophy as set forth by Dr. Maria Montessori in the areas of learners and learning, the learning environment, the curriculum and instructional strategies, and student assessment. After examining these sectors of the Montessori method, I will discuss theoretical possibilities in adapting the Montessori method to the American public school system in the early 21st century. For the purpose of this paper, I will refer to the author of the Montessori method, as "Dr. Montessori" and call the general method or portions thereof as "Montessori."

Language: English

Published: Nashville, Tennessee, 2007

Doctoral Dissertation

Pilgrims and Guides: A Phenomenological Study of Montessori Teachers Guiding and Being Guided by Children in Public Montessori Schools

Available from: University of Maryland Libraries

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Abstract/Notes: This study explores the experiences of public school Montessori teachers. Max van Manen’s methodology for hermeneutic phenomenological research provides a framework for the study, and the philosophical writings of Gadamer, Abram, and Levinas guide the textual interpretations. Voices of curriculum theorists, in conversation with Maria Montessori’s words, reveal possibilities for understanding the experiences of Montessori public school teachers in the context of contemporary curriculum discourse. Six public school Montessori teachers engage with the researcher in a series of open-ended conversations. These elementary school teachers work with majority minority student populations in three different urban school districts. They range in age from mid-30s to early 60s, and have between 5 and 33 years of teaching experience in public Montessori schools. Their conversations illuminate the experience of teaching in public Montessori schools in three main themes. The teachers tell of being transformed and drawn-in to a way of life as they take Montessori training. They speak of the goodness of work that calls children to concentrate their energies and grow into active, caring and responsible people. Finally, they reflect on boundaries of difference encountered in the hallways and meeting places of public schools, and the shadows cast by state tests. The study suggests a need for Montessori teachers in public schools to participate in open-hearted conversations with parents, non-Montessori educators and administrators about what they are trying to do in their classrooms. It also reveals that decisions made by school administrators have a powerful effect on the ability of Montessorians to create engaging, child-centered learning environments. Finally, the study suggests a need for teachers, administrators, teacher-educators, and policy makers to embrace the questions and possibilities for creative growth inherent in tensions between the conflicting paradigms of adult-driven technical/scientific educational schema and the Montessori developmentally-based teaching style.

Language: English

Published: College Park, Maryland, 2007

Article

Teaching in a Public Montessori School: Contexts, Quandaries, and Thinking Schemes [In einer öffentlichen Montessori-Schule unterrichten: Kontexte, Zwickmühlen und Denkschemata / Enseñanza en una escuela pública de Montessori: contextos, dilemas y esquemas de pensamiento / Enseigner dans une école privée Montessori: Contextes, dilemmes et modes de pensée / Ensinar numa escola pública Montessori: contextos, dilemas e esquemas de pensamento]

Available from: Taylor and Francis Online

Publication: Person-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapies, vol. 15, no. 1

Pages: 37-54

Americas, Montessori schools, North America, Public Montessori, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: As one of many contemporary educational reform strategies, the charter school movement has expanded opportunities for educators, children and parents to pursue environments that suit their personal values and predispositions. This project invited teachers to share their experiences working in a unique charter school environment. It examined how teachers described and conceptualized their experiences as professional educators in a public Montessori charter school. Two research questions guided the work as a whole: (1) How do teachers working in this unique charter school environment describe their ideals and perceptions of professional practice? And, (2) what do teachers have to say about this unique charter school environment and their experience working in it? The study employed multiple interviews with seven experienced educators. Using a modified interpretative phenomenological analysis approach, the researchers inductively analyzed teachers’ narratives. After inductive analysis, the teachers’ responses were considered in light of qualities reported to be associated with effective person-centered practice (therapy and teaching). These qualities included practitioner afforded conditions and teachers’ strategies for coping with a wide range of intra-personal, personal and organizational/contextual challenges. [Als eine von vielen heutigen Reformstrategien in der Erziehung bietet die Bewegung privater Schulen mit öffentlichem Auftrag erweiterte Möglichkeiten für Erziehende, Kinder und Eltern, um eine Umgebung bereitzustellen, die ihren persönlichen Werten und Prädispositionen entgegenkommt. Dieses Projekt bot Lehrern die Gelegenheit, ihre Erfahrungen darüber mitzuteilen, im einzigartigen Umfeld einer Privatschule mit öffentlichem Auftrag zu arbeiten. Es untersuchte, wie Lehrer ihre Erfahrungen als professionelle Erziehende in einer privaten Montessori-Schule mit öffentlichem Auftrag beschrieben und konzeptualisierten. Zwei Forschungsfragen dienten dabei als Leitfaden: 1. Wie beschreiben Lehrer, die in dieser einzigartigen Privatschul-Umgebung mit öffentlichem Auftrag arbeiten, ihre Ideale und die Wahrnehmungen zur Berufspraxis? Und 2. Was haben die Lehrer über diese einzigartige Privatschul-Umgebung mit öffentlichem Auftrag zu sagen und wie erleben sie es, darin zu arbeiten? Die Studie verwendete verschiedene Interviews mit sieben erfahrenen Erziehenden. Eine modifizierte interpretative phänomenologische Analyse diente als Ansatz, womit die Forschenden die Narrative der Lehrpersonen induktiv analysierten. Nach der induktiven Analyse wurden die Antworten der Lehrpersonen im Licht von Qualitäten betrachtet, die man mit effektiver personzentrierter Praxis (Therapie und Unterricht) in Verbindung bringt. Diese Qualitäten schlossen Bedingungen ein, die Praktiker anboten sowie Unterrichtsstrategien, um mit einem weiten Spektrum an intra-personalen, persönlichen und organisatorischen/kontextuellen Herausforderungen zurechtzukommen. / Como una de las muchas estrategias de reforma educativa contemporánea, el movimiento de la escuela charter ha ampliado oportunidades para educadores, niños y padres para buscar entornos que se adapten a sus valores personales y predisposiciones. Este proyecto invita a profesores a compartir sus experiencias de trabajo en un ambiente de escuela única chárter. Examina cómo los profesores describen y conceptualizan sus experiencias como profesionales de la educación en una escuela Montessori pública. Dos preguntas de investigación guiaron el trabajo en su conjunto: (1) ¿Cómo los profesores que trabajan en este entorno de escuela única charter describen a sus ideales y percepciones de la práctica profesional? Y, (2) ¿Qué tienen que decir los profesores acerca de este entorno único de escuela charter y su experiencia de trabajo en ella? El estudio empleó múltiples entrevistas con siete educadores experimentados. Utilizando un enfoque de análisis fenomenológico interpretativo modificado, los investigadores analizaron inductivamente las narrativas de los docentes. Después del análisis inductivo, se consideraron las respuestas de los profesores a la luz de las cualidades que mencionaron para ser asociadas a una práctica centrada en la persona (de terapia y enseñanza). Estas cualidades incluyen un profesional que brinda las condiciones y estrategias docentes para hacer frente a una amplia gama de desafios intrapersonales, personales, organizacionales y contextuales. / Parmi les nombreuses stratégies de réforme éducative, le mouvement de l’école à charte a accru les possibilités dont disposent les éducateurs, les enfants et les enseignants pour développer des cadres qui répondent à leurs valeurs personnelles et à leurs attentes. Ce projet a invité les enseignants à partager leurs expériences tout en travaillant dans le cadre d’une école à charte. Il a examiné comment les enseignants ont décrit et conceptualisé leurs expériences en tant qu’éducateurs professionnels dans une école privée à charte Montessori. L’ensemble du travail a été conduit sur base de deux questions de recherche: (1) Comment les enseignants travaillant dans le cadre de cette école à charte décrivent-ils les idéaux et la perception qu’ils se font de leur pratique professionnelle ? Et, (2) ces enseignants, qu’ont-ils à dire quant au cadre de cette école et quant à leur expérience de travail dans un tel environnement ? L’étude a eu recours à de multiples interviews auprès de sept éducateurs expérimentés. Utilisant une approche d’analyse interprétative phénoménologique modifiée, les chercheurs ont analysé de manière inductive les récits des professeurs. Après analyse inductive, les réponses des professeurs ont été examinées à la lumière des qualités considérées comme associées à une réelle pratique centrée sur la personne (thérapie et enseignement). Ces qualités incluaient les conditions nécessaires au praticien et les stratégies des professeurs pour s’adapter à un large éventail de défis intra-personnels, personnels et organisationnels/contextuels. / No contexto das estratégias de reforma da educação contemporâneas, o movimento escolar charter expandiu as oportunidades de educadores, crianças e pais para explorar ambientes que vão ao encontro dos seus valores pessoais e das suas predisposições. Este projeto convidou os professores a partilharem as suas experiêncas de trabalho no ambiente único de uma escola charter. Analisou-se a forma como os professores descreviam e concetualizavam as suas experiências enquanto profissonais de educação numa escola pública Montessori. Duas perguntas de investigação guiaram o estudo, no seu todo: 1 – Como descrevem os professores, que trabalham nesta escola charter particular, os seus ideais e perceções em relação à sua prática profissional? 2- O que têm os professores a dizer em relação a este ambiente particular de escola charter e da sua experiência de trabalho nesse contexto? O estudo recorreu a diversas entrevistas feitas a sete educadores experientes. Os investigadores analisaram as narrativas dos professores por indução, recorrendo a uma abordagem de análise fenomenológica interpretativa modificada. Após a análise indutiva, as respostas dos professores foram interpretadas à luz das qualidades referidas como estando associadas a uma prática centrada na pessoa eficaz (terapêutica e educacional). Essas qualidades incluíam condições atribuídas ao terapeuta e estratégias dos professores para lidarem com uma vasta gama de desafios intra-pessoais, pessoais e organizacionais/contextuais.]

Language: English

DOI: 10.1080/14779757.2016.1139500

ISSN: 1477-9757

Doctoral Dissertation

The Effects of Montessori Teacher Training on Classroom Teaching Skills: The Public Montessori Teachers' Perspective

Available from: ProQuest Dissertations and Theses

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Abstract/Notes: This study compares the opinions of public school teachers of their classroom teaching skills due to participation in the Montessori model of teacher training and the traditional teacher education training programs. The data were collected through a survey of 223 public Montessori schools across the United States. The design used in this study is causal comparative to establish cause and effect. The independent variable is the participation in the Montessori Model of Teacher Training. The dependent variables are the opinions of public school teachers as perceived from participation in the Montessori Model of Teacher Training. Comparisons of teacher opinions were compiled from a survey to ascertain the impact of participation in the Montessori Model of Teacher Training. The population for this study included all teachers employed in the public Montessori schools. The sample included the entire population of teachers who participated in traditional teacher training to earn state licensure and in a Montessori teacher training program. A total of thirty-eight states were included in the survey. A total of 560 surveys were received from the population sample. The teachers surveyed included 81% females and 19% males. The years of teaching experience in public schools were 0–5 years 31%; 6–10 years 28%; 11–15 years 16%; and over 15 years 25%. The years of teaching experience in Montessori schools were 0–5 years 57 %; 6–10 years 23%; 11–15 years 11%; and over 15 years 9%. The basic conclusions from this study indicated that there are significant differences, p < .05, in the responses of teachers who participated in the Montessori model of teacher training and the traditional teacher training for preparation of classroom instruction. In 11 out of the 12 survey items, the diverse approach of teaching used in the Montessori model of teacher training was perceived to be superior to traditional teacher training. However, in one survey question, the traditional teacher training was viewed superior for preparation of teaching in a whole group setting. This study suggest that the responses of teachers strongly recommend the Montessori model of teacher training.

Language: English

Published: Orangeburg, South Carolina, 1997

Article

Racial and Economic Diversity in U.S. Public Montessori Schools

Available from: University of Kansas Libraries

Publication: Journal of Montessori Research, vol. 2, no. 2

Pages: 15-34

African American community, African Americans, Americas, Mira C. Debs - Writings, Montessori method of education, Montessori schools, North America, Public Montessori, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: As public Montessori schools rapidly expand through the United States, the question then arises: What population of students do the schools serve? This study presents a new empirical data set examining the racial and economic diversity of 300 whole-school, public Montessori programs open in 2012–2013, where the entire school uses the Montessori Method. While school-choice scholars are concerned that choice programs like Montessori lead to greater student segregation by race and social class, this study finds a variety of outcomes for public Montessori. Public Montessori as a sector has strengths in student racial and socioeconomic diversity, but it also has diversity challenges, particularly among Montessori charters. The study concludes with recommended strategies for public Montessori schools to enroll a racially and economically diverse student body.

Language: English

DOI: 10.17161/jomr.v2i2.5848

ISSN: 2378-3923

Report

Understanding Equitable Access to Public Montessori Pre-K: A Case Study of Montessori Recruitment and Enrollment Practices

Available from: Child Trends

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Abstract/Notes: Ensuring equitable access to high-quality early education for families from all racial, ethnic, and income backgrounds is a critical component for addressing systemic racism and inequality within the public education system. This study examined one piece of this issue by investigating access to public Montessori pre-K, as well as barriers that may hinder equitable access. While many public Montessori pre-K programs report that students are admitted through a random lottery process, initial efforts to study these programs indicated that certain enrollment policies may create barriers to access. Potential barriers to accessing public Montessori pre-K include lottery priority status for siblings, neighborhood residents, and children of staff; a lack of targeted recruitment practices for families from underserved communities; and affordability. These barriers to access may disproportionally affect Black and Latino families and families facing poverty, who have unequal access to high-quality educational opportunities overall. The Montessori model was originally created to give children with learning challenges (e.g., children who exhibited concentration, attention, and discipline challenges) a high-quality educational environment where they could thrive. Given the origins of the Montessori pedagogy and existing disparities within the educational system, questions of equity should be at the center of policy development for accessing public Montessori pre-K.

Language: English

Published: Bethesda, Maryland, Mar 26, 2021

Article

Examining a Public Montessori School’s Response to the Pressures of High-Stakes Accountability

Available from: University of Kansas Libraries

Publication: Journal of Montessori Research, vol. 1, no. 1

Pages: 42

Americas, Montessori method of education, North America, Public Montessori, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: A public Montessori school is expected to demonstrate high student scores on standardized assessments to succeed in the current school accountability era. A problem for a public Montessori elementary school is how to make sense of the school’s high-stakes assessment scores in terms of Montessori’s unique educational approach. This case study examined the ways one public Montessori elementary school responded to its high-stakes test scores in the areas of curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The research revealed the ways the principal, teachers, and parents on the school council modified Montessori practices, curriculum, and assessment procedures based on test scores. A quality Montessori education is designed to offer children opportunities to develop both cognitive skills and affective behaviors such as student motivation that will serve them beyond their public school experiences. However, fundamental Montessori practices were modified as a result of the pressure to raise test scores. The impact of the highstakes assessment era on alternative types of schools must be considered because it is contradictory to support the availability of educational alternatives while at the same time pressuring these schools to conform to strict and narrow measures of success.

Language: English

DOI: 10.17161/jomr.v1i1.4913

ISSN: 2378-3923

Article

Predominantly Black Institutions and Public Montessori Schools: Reclaiming the “Genius” in African American Children

Available from: De Gruyter

Publication: Multicultural Learning and Teaching, vol. 13, no. 1

Pages: Article 20170007

, Montessori approach

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Abstract/Notes: There are more than 22,000 Montessori schools in over 100 countries worldwide. Beginning in the 1950s the American Montessori movement was primarily a private pre-school movement. There are more than 5,000 schools in the United States; over 500 of these are public. Montessori schools are an increasingly popular choice in the U.S. for public school districts looking to improve their educational outcomes. Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs) can play a pivotal role by integrating Montessori education within their teacher preparation programs. As the demand for Montessori education increases there will be a need for more highly-qualified, culturally and linguistically diverse teachers who have the appropriate credentials and can implement the Montessori approach. Scientific research confirms that children who attend Montessori schools are advantaged academically, socially and emotionally. Communities such as Milwaukee and Chicago are now implementing Montessori education through public schools as part of school reform efforts making the educational approach more accessible to African American children.

Language: English

DOI: 10.1515/mlt-2017-0007

ISSN: 2161-2412

Article

Students of Color and Public Montessori Schools: A Review of the Literature

Available from: University of Kansas Libraries

Publication: Journal of Montessori Research, vol. 3, no. 1

Pages: 1-15

African American community, African Americans, Americas, Mira C. Debs - Writings, Mira C. Debs - Writings, Montessori method of education, Montessori schools, North America, Public Montessori, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: Students of color comprise a majority in public Montessori school enrollments around the United States, and practitioners are often asked for evidence of the Montessori Method’s benefits for these students. This article examines the relevant literature related to the experiences of students of color in public Montessori schools. Research finds Montessori education offers both opportunities and limitations for students of color in attending diverse schools, developing executive functions, achieving academically, accessing early childhood education and culturally responsive education, minimizing racially disproportionate discipline, and limiting overidentification for special education. Public Montessori education’s efficacy with students of color may be limited by several factors: the lack of diversity of the teaching staff and culturally responsive teacher education, schools that struggle to maintain racially diverse enrollments, and the challenge of communicating Montessori’s benefits to families with alternative views of education. The review concludes with directions for future research.

Language: English

DOI: 10.17161/jomr.v3i1.5859

ISSN: 2378-3923

Article

Standardized Test Proficiency in Public Montessori Schools

Available from: Taylor and Francis Online

Publication: Journal of School Choice, vol. 16, no. 1

Pages: 105-135

Academic achievement, Americas, Angeline Stoll Lillard - Writings, Montessori schools, Montessori schools, North America, Public Montessori, Standardized tests, United States of America

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Abstract/Notes: Although Montessori is the most common unconventional education model, no multi-state study has compared standardized test proficiency of Montessori schools with districts. Here we report on this for the 10 states/regions with the most public Montessori schools (n = 195). In 3rd grade, Montessori schools were less proficient in math but more proficient in ELA. In 8th grade they were also more proficient on ELA and showed a trend to greater proficiency in math. Black, Hispanic, and economically disadvantaged students at Montessori schools were more proficient on ELA tests, and performed better or similarly on math tests, at both grade levels. Achievement gaps were generally smaller. Difference in percent proficient in 8th grade controlling for 3rd grade was consistently greater at Montessori schools than in districts. Potential reasons for the different performance of Montessori schools are discussed.

Language: English

DOI: 10.1080/15582159.2021.1958058

ISSN: 1558-2159

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