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The Montessori Journey

Gladwyne Montessori

When Maria Montessori studied how children learned, she recognized the absorbent and creative minds of young students. Rather than teaching children rote memorization in an overly-structured atmosphere, she encouraged student freedom of choice and created and experimented with learning materials designed to facilitate self-directed learning. At Gladwyne Montessori, we’ve prepared our classrooms and provided learning materials based on Maria Montessori’s principles. We also ensure that our students learn within the essential developmental areas of study she had designated in her early childhood education program:

  • Practical Life
  • Sensory Development
  • Language 
  • Mathematics
  • Culture

Stages of Development

Montessori is known for meeting a child’s need based on stages of development. At Gladwyne Montessori, the learning environment, educational goals, and materials all provide our young students an optimal learning experience as their minds blossom. Below is an overview of our programs based on identified stages of development:


Toddlers are nascent learners and need to be given ample opportunities to explore their physical world and utilize their senses. We understand that, at this stage, the primary focus should be sensory stimulation for visual, auditory, and tactile development. This early part of the cycle allows toddlers to “see it, hear it, touch it, say it” in order to improve motor control and social and linguistic development. Activities include: stringing beads, arranging flowers, solving puzzles, and polishing silver 


Once children begin mastering their senses, their absorbent minds become the center of attention. At this point, there is a shift towards independent learning as students explore basic mathematical applications (geometric shapes, addition, decimal usage, etc.), language, biology, and geography. Activities include: trinomial cube, pink tower, color tablets, stamp game, and bead chains

Lower Elementary 

After concrete concepts take hold, a child’s mind begins to wander and wonder about the world, sparking the eternal question: Why? Imagination becomes the focus at this stage. More emphasis is placed on complicated linguistic and grammatical structures and symbols, fractions, and more abstract mathematical concepts as well as scientific method. Activities include: scientific experiment, stamp game, bead frame, and checkerboard 

Upper Elementary

Our oldest learners are still asking, “why,” but they are starting to consider their place in this world. They move from concrete ideas and practical imagination to abstraction and advanced thought processes. Language and mathematics are central, including grammar, parts of speech, and storytelling, as well as triangle-study with the Pythagorean Theorem. Activities include: pegboard and the timeline of life

The Montessori philosophy allows students to make choices independently, learn what they need, and take advantage of their mental, emotional, and physical growth. To learn more about Gladwyne Montessori, the early education program we provide, and how to enroll, give us a call today!