Why Near North Montessori?

This is the place where kids can soar.

Here you will not find the traditional lineup of desks in rows, textbooks and mind-numbing rote memorization. What you will find are dynamic learning laboratories – a school alive with students exploring questions about the world around them. Classrooms are vibrant communities, each organized by age levels, where students spend three years learning and growing together. Little ones watch older students as they master new skills. Older ones take the time to mentor younger students as they work through new challenges.

Around every corner is another learning adventure, ready to be explored. Serving as a guide, the teacher carefully orchestrates this journey, with the trajectory of each individual student carefully fine-tuned prior to launch. Here, teachers question, challenge, and inspire students. They look for ways to spark creativity and imagination. They cultivate the three Rs: respect, responsibility and resilience. They help students navigate challenging academic work and celebrate those teachable moments where students stand on the precipice of trying something new.

In the classroom and as a community, we take a purposeful, fearless look at ourselves, our differences, and our connections. Here, diversity can be race, ethnicity, religion, gender, economic status or learning differences. Our commitment to diversity promotes an environment of respect based on equity and inclusion in which students become allies for each other while developing awareness of social and global justice issues.

Near North Montessori is a powerful educational experience, drawing its energy and inspiration from the students, families and teachers who call this school home. Together, we work to create a warm, welcoming community where young hearts and minds take flight.

Our Guiding Principles

Near North creates curious, motivated, and accomplished lifelong learners through an environment and Montessori approach unique to our school. We achieve these outcomes by adhering to the following principles:

Outstanding Montessori Teachers

NNM’s staff guide, observe, and create an environment of calm, curiosity, and joy for every child. Teachers assist children to progress at their own pace, gradually discovering their potential while learning to help themselves. All classroom teachers are trained in the Montessori method, and each lead teacher holds a credential from Association Montessori Internationale (AMI), the American Montessori Society (AMS), or North American Montessori Teachers Association (NAMTA).

Prepared Environments

Montessori believed that all children deserve to learn in orderly, beautiful spaces, which mirror the comfortable surroundings of the child’s home. Near North students are welcomed each day to our warm, inviting school. They begin their lessons with practical life experiences focused on basic movements, fine motor skills, and independence. Children complete their work in an orderly fashion on prepared workspaces, developing their intellect, executive functioning, and concentration. Sensorial learning experiences integrate all senses into the educational process. Academic experiences explore language, math, science, geography, and the arts.

Self-Guided Work

Children play an active role in their education, led by their inherent curiosity and are encouraged to be active seekers of knowledge. Following an initial teacher-led demonstration, children select their own work to complete during an extended work period. As early investigation evolves into mastery, the student and teacher adjust the lesson, or the student assists fellow classmates on the same task

Authentic Materials

Authentic Montessori materials offer tangible, purposeful, hands-on learning experiences. The Montessori materials encourage large movement and fine motor development, self-assessment, and the integration of multiple senses into a single lesson. Sounds, textures, and shapes provide immersive language opportunities to learn words and reading. Math concepts of size, shape, and quantity are introduced with three-dimensional materials.

Mixed-Age Classrooms

Near North students are meaningful members of our community, and benefit from close interaction with peers of different ages. A mixed-age environment encourages children to teach and help each other, fostering community, empathy, and collaboration. Younger children learn alongside and with older children. Lessons are mastered and reiterated as children progress from learning to teaching.

The Whole Child

Near North Montessori values each student as an individual with inherent potential, preferences, and learning styles. We recognize that each child learns in a different way--and that education is an opportunity to develop the whole child to become an engaged learner and thinker for life. Children are respected for their independence and valued as members of our community. Through their work, students learn the value of their contributions to our school and the world, to self-assess and develop judgment, and to play an active role in their own education.

We hope you enjoy this brief video that provides a look inside our school.

This video explores the questions of how students learn and how advancements are measured in a Montessori environment. Featuring NNM Head of School Audrey Perrott, as well as an alum and parent of three former students at the school, this feature sheds light on how we are unique and provides an inside look to the work being done at NNM.