Montessori vs Traditional

Development at a student’s own pace—instruction dictated by student’s developmental needs, learning styles, and interests Development according to structured curriculum appropriate for student’s age or grade
Striving for mastery of skills and concepts Heavy emphasis on grades
Hands-on learning Most information dispensed by lecture
Study of various subjects individually or in small groups in different parts of the room Class, as a group, studying one subject at a time
Uninterrupted work periods Schedule of classes each timed in length with relatively frequent interruptions
Freedom of movement Class seated at desks most of the time
Child-centered approach with teacher as a guide Teacher-centered approach
Student as an active participant, involved in “doing” Limited opportunities for active participation
Learning through mastery of lesson and repetition, which reinforces internal feelings of success, competency, and self-confidence Learning reinforced externally by competition, grades, test scores, and rewards
Environment and method that encourage self-discipline and self-direction in the learning process Teacher direction of the student’s learning process and discipline

“MSSA nurtures independence, responsibility, confidence, public speaking, and sharing.”