Skip to main content

Bringing Montessori to the Public

For the last 12 days of the summer, the state of Minnesota is thrown into a State Fair frenzy. Minnesota is known for it's amazing fair. People from all over the Midwest flock to the state each summer for one final adventure before the summer ends. Four years ago, the Minnesota Montessori Network decided to take advantage of this amazing opportunity and bring Montessori to the fair.

Montessori in public - some ideas for connecting to your local Montessori community and bringing awareness about Montessori to the public

This amazing booth is created by local Montessori advocates including parents, and teachers. It allows thousands of families to experience a Montessori environment. It allows children to touch, feel, and experience the joy of Montessori materials. It allows parents to also see the joy, and the genius that is Montessori education. The booth is staffed by Montessori guides, parents, and alumni. For the past two years, I've had the privileged of volunteering in the booth and seeing the magic for myself - not only with my kids, but hundreds of families. 

Anyway, I wanted to use this opportunity to urge everyone to get involved with their local Montessori communities. Look around in your city, state, or region for Montessori organizations. Think creatively about how you can bring in the wider community and spread awareness of Montessori. Could your school host a Montessori afternoon at a local library? Could you host a booth at a local fair or festival? Could a group of parents go talk about Montessori to the local school board? Or how about walking in a local parade?  

Montessori in public - some ideas for connecting to your local Montessori community and bringing awareness about Montessori to the public

If you aren't sure if you have any local Montessori organizations in your area, the Montessori Public Policy Initiative has a list of state-wide organizations here. Explore the resources that they have for your state and see how you can get involved. I truly believe that if more people knew about and got to experience Montessori that more educational opportunities would open up for children. 

Have you been involved with a public Montessori display? What have you done? Do you have resources for someone in your area? 

*Full disclosure - I sit on the board of directors for the Minnesota Montessori Network. This post was NOT sponsored by the network and all opinions expressed are my own. I am strictly writing on my personal behalf. 


Amanda L.F. said…
I wish I had seen this before I went to the fair! Would loved to have stopped by. Maybe next year! So cool

Popular Posts

The Ultimate Montessori Toy List -- Birth to Five -- UPDATED 2019

When you are interested in Montessori, it can be difficult to know exactly what types of products you should get for your home. Or which types of "Montessori" materials are really worth the price. There are no rules about types of products can use the name Montessori which can add to the confusion. Not to mention, every toy manufacturer slaps the word "educational" on the package for good measure!

2019 UPDATE: This post has been updated to include a variety of brands and new product finds! Just a reminder that no one child will be interested in all of this or needs all of this. These toys are just here to spark ideas and give you a feeling for some Montessori-friendly options available! 

So, with this post, I'm going to try to help with this confusion! Here's a list of Montessori-friendly toys and materials for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. 

First, let's clarify that there is no such thing as a "Montessori toy." Montessori never created to…

Which Open-Ended Toys are "Worth it?"

As a Montessori parent, I try to provide a mix of materials in our home to engage my kids! That work that will spark joy, concentration, and repetition. It's not always an easy task, as Maria Montessori said, "Life is mysterious...only the choice of life can choose the work that the child truly needs. Therefore, the teacher respects this mysterious process and knows to wait with faith." So, there does sometimes feel like there is a bit of trial and error when it comes to choosing materials that your children need. 

For us, the right balance is easier to find when I spend time deeply observing my children. Watching their interests, sitting on my hands if I have to, letting them struggle a little with things, and letting them get bored. And what I have personally found is that here at home, a combination of open ended materials and more structured work have been the right balance. Open ended toys wouldn't necessarily be found in a Montessori classroom, but they are perf…

A Montessori Approach to Purging Your Toys

Becoming a Montessori family has been life changing in so many ways, most obviously with the amount and type of materials we use in our home. Once you see why having so many toys is a problem, or when you make the decision to move towards Montessori, it can be completely overwhelming. But, taking a Montessori approach to purging your toys is possible! And, it doesn't exactly mean that you have to throw away everything you have and start over with only expensive wooden toys. It will mean taking a hard look at what you have and whether it really fits with Montessori.

One note, however, Montessori is at its core about following your child's own path and respecting your child as a whole person. So, if your child has a toy, lovey, book, or whatever that your child super loves or is super attached to, but it doesn't fit Montessori ideals, don't take it away. Follow your child, that is more Montessori than whether or not you own some specific consumer product. 
How to Purge You…