Why Near North Montessori?

What You Can Expect

Near North is one of the country's largest and oldest Montessori schools. Founded in 1963 and in our current home since 1989, NNM provides a welcoming, enriching environment for every family that walks through our doors. Our faculty promote confidence, independence, and curiosity in each student, inspiring them to learn freely and explore bravely. At Near North, your child will find unique learning opportunities rooted in the Montessori philosophy, world-class teachers, lifelong friends, and a community of diverse, passionate families.

A young child writes on a chalkboard



Mission, Vision, and Values


NNM prepares students for life in an ever-changing and complex world inspiring them to reach their inherent potential through Montessori philosophy and with a strong parent-school partnership.


In keeping with Dr. Montessori’s goal of making the world a better place for all humanity through education, it is incumbent upon us to prepare our students to be tomorrow’s ethical leaders. Graduates of Near North Montessori are skilled communicators, innovative and creative thinkers, collaborative problem solvers and take responsibility for their actions. Our students consider the interests of others when making decisions and consider the impact of their decisions on the larger community. Our community of parents, faculty and staff models ethical stewardship and promotes an empathetic and compassionate outlook. NNM promotes a culture of high academic standards, strong moral and ethical values and a passion for learning and self-fulfillment.


AT NNM, we teach to our values and provide a learning environment where all members of our community respect and demonstrate:

  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Life-long Learning
  • Concern for others and empathy
  • Integrity, Honesty, and Authenticity
  • Humility and Cultural Competency
  • Civility and Respect
  • Responsibility
  • Sustainability, and Community
  • Courageous Leadership



"My Montessori friends are truly my family - a feeling of unconditional love and an understanding beyond most."

—2012 NNM Alum

“Near North helped me become a loving and caring person. The time I had here with my friends and the relationship I had with my teachers created a sense of community that I haven’t felt before – especially in a school setting.”

—2015 NNM Alum



Our True North

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:



A Home for Your Child and Yourself

Near North welcomes parents, as much as their children, into the school community. We believe that educating a child requires more than the faculty and curriculum at NNM--it requires generous parental involvement.

Throughout the year, parents are encouraged to actively participate in our community: by observing their child at work in the classroom, meeting with teachers one-on-one, through financial contributions, by volunteering time and service with school events, by serving as a leader on the Board of Directors or other committee.

Parents develop strong, meaningful relationships with their children’s teachers. In NNM, they find a place that welcomes their talents, their time, and their inspiration. They build a community of like-minded friends who will share their joys, expand their thinking, and help them along the journey of parenthood.

A parent speaks at a Near North Coffee Tour

Near North Parents are encouraged to be involved in their child's education—through open dialogue with teachers, taking part in educational milestones, and by learning about Montessori philosophy and their child's journey. Parent education is offered in many different formats from classroom observations and presentations to more formal educational sessions reviewing Montessori philosophy.

Over several evenings throughout the school year, parents are encouraged to attend informational talks, group discussions, and specific lessons to provide greater insight into the daily life of your child.



Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

At the heart of Montessori philosophy is the belief that every child is an individual with specific needs, identities, talents and backgrounds. It is with this philosophy in mind that the school community embraces diversity, equity and inclusion as central tenets. We seek to break down barriers that cause injustice and to equip staff, faculty and students with tools to understand and dismantle injustice.

As a community, NNM seeks to develop cultural humility through embracing and honoring identity, creating a deepened understanding of all members of our School community and to cultivate a School-wide atmosphere of windows and mirrors.



A Learning Approach for All Children

An advantage of the Montessori approach—including multi-age classrooms with students of varying abilities and interests—is that it allows each child to work at her own pace. Children with special needs, such as learning or attention differences, often thrive in Near North's setting.

Montessori teaching materials engage all the senses, important for students with distinct learning styles. Students learn by doing and are free to move about, an advantage for those who require a high-level of physical activity. NNM's uninterrupted work time and multi-age classrooms allow each child to learn at his own pace, without pressure to meet formal standards by a predetermined time. From an early age, we help all students see themselves as unique—with individual preferences, abilities, and challenges—which helps them form a confident identity to serve them for their entire educational journey.