The Montessori method of education is a century-old pedagogical tool that allows your child to become confident, independent, and self-reliant from a very young age.
Unlike traditional educational institutions, Dr. Maria Montessori developed a systematic, scientific, and unique pedagogical philosophy that caters to the child’s individual needs.
This unconventional educational approach promotes auto-didactic and hands-on learning which specially designed Montessori Materials often facilitate in a Montessori Prepared Environment.
Along with an organized Prepared environment, the Montessori Method of education also provides the child with a systematically arranged curriculum that caters to the requirements of different planes of development.
While most people associate Montessori Schools to be preschools, the Montessori Method of education caters to the needs and requirements of all four planes of development.
The Montessori High school curriculum can be easily described as a path towards becoming a successful, well-rounded, contributing member of society.
Although limited in number, Montessori high schools require your child to go through rigorous academic studies and work that leads them to a path of success.
If you are interested in learning more about Montessori High Schools, look no further. Here is everything you should know about the Montessori Highschool experience and programs.
What are the chief characteristics of Montessori Highschools?
During the period between 12 to 18 years, children begin to develop both mentally, emotionally, and physically.
This Plane of development is referred to as the phase of “rebirth” as the child embarks on the journey to becoming an adult.
The Montessori Highschool program is meant for children between the ages of 12 to 18 years. During the third phase, the child not only transitions mentally but also physiologically.
The Montessori method facilitates the education of both social and economical aspects of adulthood.
Teenagers are able to participate in a real-life situation with real-life consequences that prepare them for the future.
This method was described by Montessori as “valorization” meaning the internal and external validation of inner potentialities and personality.
The Montessori method also focuses on the physical growth of teenagers along with the development of social, emotional, cultural, and practical growth.
With all aspects of development covered and explored the child is then returned back to the traditional educational setting for the intellectual preparation for becoming an adult.
Here are some unique and important features of the Montessori High school program:
- Auto-didactic learning
- Establishing independence
- Allows children to become self-reliant, and fosters a sense of discipline
- Allows children to develop social skills through mixed-age level classes
How is the Montessori High School Program different?
During the adolescence phase, children go through a rapid transition of mental as well as physical changes.
During this stage children between the age range of 12 to 18 years are at the threshold of becoming an adult.
Recognizing the human tendencies and unique transitions during the stage of adolescence allows parents and educators to establish a strong academic framework for the child’s optimum development.
Here is a list of transitions and changes an adolescent experiences during their developmental process:
1. Physical Changes:
During adolescents, individuals face numerous physiological, neurological, and hormonal changes.
2. Cognitive changes:
Adolescents during this phase have the ability to think critically and reason. They become aware of the surrounding world, consequences, and responsibilities, they do not fear asking “why” or “how”.
Adolescents show an interest in debating, questioning, and analyzing the world around them, this stage brings out the creativity in most teenagers.
3. Social Changes:
Although adolescents seek autonomy and freedom, they also seek solitude to find their identities.
During the age of puberty, children show a high interest in human welfare, objectivity, and dignity.
4. Emotional Changes:
During this stage, children begin to develop an understanding of the world and themselves.
They begin to self-criticize and often go through emotional breakdowns due to hormonal and neurological changes.
Children become egocentric and begin to establish autonomy over objects and their lives, children are also highly susceptible to peer pressure.
The Montessori High School Programs and curriculum offer children the right opportunities that prepare adolescents for adult life.
What does the Montessori Highschool program incorporate?
The Montessori High School Program for adolescents is bifurcated into two sections: one for the ages 12 to 15 years and another for 15 to 18years.
The Montessori Curriculum for teenagers allows them to develop an intimate interest in practical life activities and responsibilities they will have as an adult.
The Montessori curriculum for high school incorporates economics as well as preparations for adulthood.
The Montessori Curriculum during the third plane of development helps teenagers become responsible, and confident, and prepares them to become a contributing part of society.
The Montessori curriculum prepares teenagers for the future. This method is referred to as “valorization” meaning the internal and external validation of inner potentialities and personality.
The teenagers along with their new-found knowledge of adult life also get a chance to map out their future prospects.
The Montessori High School Program incorporates the following subjects in the curriculum:
- Social Studies
- Health and Fitness
- Service Learning
- Field Studies
Pupils are required to participate in complex assignments and practicals where children perform intense research and often gain mastery of the subjects being taught.
But the learning experience for adolescents in the Montessori Highschool program is not limited to the classroom.
Here are some additional opportunities adolescents are provided with as a part of the Montessori High School Program:
- Adolescents are able to develop leadership quality by participating in student government
- Adolescents are able to develop respect toward the surrounding environment.
- Adolescents are able to develop an understanding of the currency through Mirco-economic experiences such as setting up a small informal business.
- Adolescents are able to respect the natural environment by indulging in Montessori outdoor activities
- Adolescents are able to utilize modern technology in an ethical and responsible manner.
- Mixed-age level classrooms allow the adolescent to integrate with pupils of different age groups and often consume the role of a teacher or leader.
Other Elements of Montessori High School Programs:
One of the cornerstones of Montessori philosophy is the Montessori Prepared Environment.
As a student-centric educational approach, the Montessori Method of education integrates unique aspects that foster independence, responsibility, organizational skills, and becoming self-reliant.
The Montessori Highschool environment provides adolescents with the right opportunities to become contributing adults in society.
Features of the Montessori High School Environment are delineated below:
1. Mixed-age level classes:
Montessori mixed-age level classes integrate children who are 2 to 3 years apart in terms of age range.
The Mixed-age level classroom allows children to schedule meetings, gain leadership qualities, and build new relationships with their peers.
Pupils are also able to participate in group activities, develop new learning styles, and enhance their problem-solving skills.
2. Montessori Work cycle:
The Montessori uninterrupted work cycle allows pupils to indecently and willingly participate in activities and learn subjects of their choice.
The uninterrupted work cycle helps children perform activities that require prolonged periods of focus and allow children to develop an intimate understanding of the curricular subjects.
3. The Spiral Curriculum:
The world of Montessori incorporates a myriad of unconventional concepts, one such aspect is The Montessori Spiral Curriculum.
This form of curriculum promotes children to work according to a reasonable pace, meet deadlines, schedule the submissions, and gain an intimate knowledge of the curriculum.
Is a Montessori Highschool right for your child?
High school years although exceptionally stressful for most of us, are among the most pivotal years for an individual’s overall development process.
High school experiences allow individuals to develop essential social skills such as communication skills, coordination, leadership, time management, discipline, and critical and creative thinking.
When given enough exposure, these integral social and emotional skills often manifest in later years to efficiently tackle difficult situations.
Montessori Highschools unlike Montessori Preschools and Primary schools are rare and often a personal decision for parents.
Unlike traditional Highschool programs that are heavily dependent on standardized assessments and rigid curricula, Montessori Highschools provide teenagers with a more individualized educational environment.
Not only do Montessori Highschools provide your child with an individualized educational experience they also promote your child to smoothly transition to the college environment.
Regardless of the benefits, it is important for parents to do their requisite research on Montessori Highschool institutions before enrolling their child in a Montessori Highschool Program.