Maker (STEAM) Studios
The arts can no longer be treated as frill. Arts education is essential to stimulating the creativity and innovation that will prove critical to young Americans competing in a global economy.
– Arne Duncan
The Maker Movement fits well with the Montessori Method. The teacher is a guide, observing children and the choices they make within the space. Those choices guide lessons and what new materials are introduced.
Wilmington Montessori School has three Maker (STEAM) Studios on its campus, one for each program level: Toddler, Primary and Elementary/Middle School. In these studios teachers and students ask questions, seek answers and investigate ideas. These studios encourage investigation, collaboration, problem-solving and skill-sharing. Our Maker Studios are designed to provide cohesive experiences with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics). They are places where children will participate in teacher-directed learning but also where self-directed learning occurs.
AMS Certification:, Elementary I
Favorite Montessori Moment: One of the most special moments for me in the Montessori classroom is during a child's "Birth & Life" (birthday) celebration. Each child gets so excited to "walk around the sun" with his or her parents watching and sharing moments of their lives with their school community. I always ask each child from the classroom to share one wish he or she has for the birthday child. As we go around the circle I am always so proud of what each child has to say about the birthday child. When I first became a parent, one of the milestones I most looked forward to sharing with my own children was "walking around the sun." While my own children no longer attend Montessori school, each year we take those steps around the sun.
Favorite Montessori Moment: My favorite Montessori moments are pizza Fridays. I loved helping the Primary students with each step of the pizza ordering process. It left the students feeling so purposeful and it was an experience we all looked forward to each week. They would count how many slices our classroom needed and make sure there was enough money. It also led into a discussion about fractions later in the year with the kindergartners, since there are eight slices in each pizza. They would bring out the eight-long chain and we would convert pizza slices into whole pizzas. Grace and courtesy lessons were also reinforced through ordering the pizza over the phone (public speaking, making sure they can be heard, using "please" and "thank you"), carrying the pizzas back and distributing them to the different classrooms. I honestly can't think of a more fun way to integrate so many different Montessori curriculum areas, and it's a skill they will certainly use later in life.