Montessori Plus School Kent WA

Montessori Teacher Preparation Kent WA

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Montessori Language: A Quick List

Compliments of Junko Krause,

Revised by Sharlet McClurkin

  1. “Would you like to choose your work?”
  1. “May I help you choose your work?”
  1. “We work in school.”
  1. “I will put this work away, and you may have a turn.”
  1. “You may sit here.”
  1. “I will show you a new lesson!”
  1. “I have some interesting work to show you!”
  1. “Would you like to see some special work?”


  1. “Would you like for me to help you carry it?”
  1. (Cleaning up a spill): “I will help you start, and you may finish.”
  1. “Can you find the items to match?”
  1. “Let us put this away and use it another day.”
  1. “I will put this away, and you may use it later.”
  1. “Accidents happen.”


  1. “You are proud of your work!”

2.   “You are upset (left out, hurt, sad, angry, worried, lonely, etc.).”


  1. “We speak quietly in our school.”
  1. “We treat others with respect.”
  1. “We use our work carefully.”
  1. “We walk in our school.”
  1. “We choose work we have been shown.”
  1. “We roll our rug and carry it with two hands.”
  1. “We speak with grace and courtesy to others.”
  1. “You may choose your own work.”
  1. “In our school we do one work at a time.”
  1. “We dance outside; inside we do our work.”
  1. “We do not share in school.”
  1. “Please try it first, then I will help you.”

1. “I am worried when you run through the school because I want you to be safe.”

2.  “When you hit Johnny, I am very sad because I want all children to feel safe and happy.”

3.  “I am upset when you kick me.  My leg hurts and I can’t teach the children!”

Respectful Language and Actions in a Montessori School Seminar

(Seminars may be arranged by calling 253-859-2262)


A.  Joyful Learning and Respectful Speech

 Sharlet McClurkin will paint a picture of joyful learning and respectful speech in this seminar. She will show in words, songs and actions how to rise above the challenges of the Montessori classroom and keep one’s calm and vision for the children.

This seminar will demonstrate non-conventional language and methods of the Montessori teacher while working with children in a group activity or in the open classroom.

B.  Music of Respect; Roadblocks

Mrs. McClurkin will also show adults how to present transition songs and songs of respect and self-confidence to children.  She will discuss the impact of negative words and phrases, as well as ordering and question, in the young child’s life.

C.  Listening

Adults will learn how to listen to children with empathy and how to phrase a deep concern or feeling in a positive way.  They will see ways of speaking courteously and gracefully to children.

D.  Problem-solving

Mrs. McClurkin will present problem scenarios, discuss “whose problem it is” and how to respond to the children in an authentic and human, yet respectful manner.


A.  When to intervene with a child. 

1.  How much intervention do I give to children?  What is the criterion for intervening?

2.  As a director, how much intervention do I give to children and teachers?  Do I correct them as I walk through the classroom?

3.  How much intervention do I give to interns?

B.  What is the difference between “managing” and “leading” a classroom?

1.  How can I find a balance between complete freedom for the children and my guidance of them?

2.  What is the difference between managing and leading them?

3.  What happens when I “micro-manage” all of the children?

4.  What happens when I “let them go”?

5.  What does Montessori mean that we must have the “eye of faith” toward children?


A.  Why is freedom of choice essential for children in a Montessori school?

1.  How much freedom do I give 4.5 through 5 year-olds to choose their work?

2.  What is the place of practical life for 5-year-olds?

3.   What are some Montessori ways to encourage the older children to choose 5-year-old work?  What name may I call it?  (“harder,” “challenging,” etc?)

B.  What about freedom for teachers?

1.  How much freedom do I, as the director, give to teachers and interns to select their circle themes and to set up their classroom?

2.  Should there be a certain number of lessons that children and interns give each day?

3.  What happens when the teacher makes the work so that the child is only able to do part of it?


A.  What is discipline?

1.  What kind of discipline should Montessori children have?

2.  What are the three levels of obedience, according to Montessori?

B.  The “time-out”

1.  How long should time-outs be for children?

2.  What is the purpose of a time out?

3.  What steps are included in a “time-out”?

4.  Should children be required to say, “I’m sorry.”?


A.  Children: What happens when a teacher tells a child that they are not doing hard work like another child her age?

B.  Teachers/interns: What happens if you tell an intern that she is not doing as well as another intern?


A.  Setting your purpose

1.  Should the main purpose of the Montessori classroom be academic?

2.  How can I educate parents to know the purpose?

B.  The attraction of the “old” thinking

1.  What traditional philosophies and roadblocks can creep in so that the teachers, interns and children feel stress and pressure to perform?

2.  How can I have an atmosphere of joy of learning for all teachers, interns and teachers?

C.  How to have “joyful learning” every day in the classroom

Love of Order

Most of our society thinks of children as impulsive and chaotic beings. Dr. Maria Montessori found, however, that even the youngest children display a need for and a sense of order in their environment. The infant needs the constancy of his mother’s and father’s faces; the toddler must have his “blankee” and favorite stuffed animals to go to sleep. The room in which the young child spends most of his time must remain constant in the location of his bed, toys, chair, etc. because his environment is, to him, “like the sea to the fish and the air to the birds”, said Dr. Montessori.

Even young children will see items out-of-place and put them back. This is his divine drive for constancy, as part of his construction, and we must recognize it and allow it to be expressed. A parent once asked one of our teachers, “Why does my son take the front door mat to his room and put his toys on it?” Of course we know the answer: The child loves an orderly environment and has learned how satisfying it is to have a safe place to “work.” Adults do not realize how young children thrive on the same environment, and things always in their place. As Dr. Montessori mentioned, during the period of active construction of his psyche, “the child often feels the deepest impulse to bring order into what, according to his logic, is in a state of confusion” (1995).

One year I allowed about twenty teachers in training to visit one of our large classrooms for a short while, maybe thirty minutes. The adults came in while the children were working, and the new teachers took off their shoes and put them by the double doors. Then they found places around the room to sit and watch. Not too long afterwards, we all looked over and saw two children by the doorway. They observed the twenty pairs of shoes and found the matches for each one, placing them in pairs along the wall.

Although the child appears to be primarily fixed on his external world, he also possesses an internal order in his body. The internal sense of order “makes him aware of the different parts of his own body and their relative positions” (1966). He thrives on a definite schedule of eating and sleeping, playing, and learning. Without it, he becomes distracted and loses concentration.