Montessori in Vernon has changed a fair bit since Cathy Goss’ last speaking engagement here in 2009.
At that time the program was expanding to offer a second primary class. Now with a total of five classrooms covering Grades 1 to 6 and threatening to burst the seams of Silver Star elementary school, the Vernon Montessori Society is proposing a kindergarten Montessori class for September 2015.
“Demand for the program is great and continues to grow,” said Gladys Fraser, society president. “Parents were lined up by 5 a.m. on registration day to secure their child’s placement last year.”
The program is open to all families in the district and an information night on Tuesday is intended to help families decide if Montessori is the right choice for their child. Guest speaker Goss will touch on the basics of Montessori philosophy, ways to determine if your child is a fit for Montessori and Montessori a fit for your family. She will focus on ways to support your child’s learning at home.
“Montessori classes require students to be self starters and develop intrinsic motivation for learning as they make their way through most lessons at their own pace. This doesn’t mean these classrooms are unorganized,” said Fraser. “On the contrary, a Montessori class requires a director (classroom teacher) who is very organized and often offers a more structured environment than traditional classes. As each child works independently, there can be up to 30 lessons happening at the same time in a classroom. Well-structured, organized lessons allow this to happen.”
Montessori schools have some prominent alumni, many of whom credit the free-flowing classes with teaching them to think differently and allowing them to change the world. A few of these are: Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Sean (Diddy) Combs, Dakota Fanning, Julia Child, writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez and inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who helped create the first Montessori school in Canada.
Goss is a valued resource as a Montessori educator who has experienced the system as both parent and teacher. Her son and daughter had 10 years of Montessori education in public schools. Goss has retired from classroom teaching but continues to act as a teacher on call.
The open house and Goss’ presentation takes place Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at Silver Star elementary school. Childcare is provided. Please register by e-mail to email@example.com