Montesstory, the way I define it, with a personal interpretation to this made up term, is a Montessori story, specifically a personal Montessori story.
A montesstory can be a short episode, a little Montessori infusion, such as a moment in the classroom in which you observe a 2.5 year old girl washing a chair with amazing focus and zeal that make her tutu move continuously, with the same determination as she has in her movements.
A montesstory can be a living memory of working with classified cards with a boy fascinated by buildings and architecture. And the same memory lights up when you talk to the same child, who is now 9 years old and tells you excitedly that he’s passionate about Japanese architecture. You grin like the Cheshire Cat and the room suddenly feels warmer.
A montesstory can be a parent’s experience who feel the satisfaction his work brings at home, offering the child possibilities to make choices, encouraging his independence, giving him as much time as he needs to practice with those uncooperative socks, that keep slipping from his hands and refuse to fit.
A montesstory can be an origin story, about how you found Montessori and why you’re irremediably hooked on this method and on the vision it brings to you, on the child, on education, on evolution, on life.
So you might be wondering what my montesstory is. How did I end up loving what it offers me and what it represents?
I was trying to rewind the tape and figure out when I first heard of Montessori and what made me choose it. What I realized is that it wasn’t something I can precisely pinpoint in space and time, but more like a mix of circumstances that pushed me entirely towards Montessori.
I had just graduated from University, with and Early Childhood degree and I knew I wanted to work with children. But the university aftertaste was of disappointment, of wanting more, like when you read a book that promises to move you and you keep waiting for that moment to happen, but it never comes. So I felt I don’t want to work in a kindergarten that had the same traditional ways of teaching I had been brought up in, that I didn’t and still don’t resonate with. I started searching and I found Tesori Kindergarten, in Iași, that had just started its journey in Montessori, a method that turned my perception on education upside down and made me want to know its recipe, how often I could have it, how nurturing it was and how I could have more of it.
I got my AMI (accredited by Association Montessori Internationale Montessori) Montessori diploma for the 3-6 age group, at the Montessori Institute of Bucharest. It opened 1000 eyes in me and I felt that everything made sense and that education could be fluid, complete, supporting the child, synchronizing with his needs and not with the adult’s. Years of amazing moments in the classroom followed, with marvelous parents and children I always carry with me. They were times filled with everything, bursting with the kind of meaning and satisfaction that you can only have when you love what you do.
I got to identify with Montessori, to find ways in which to be better at what I do. This is how I ended up working in Montessori from Romania to Vietnam, wishing to challenge myself and thinking that experience is the best way to learn.
Montessori has the potential to recalibrate your inner self, to refine your personality, to make you want more from yourself, raising your standards in what you do, in the way you work and live. I say potential, because it all happens with your approval and you work. Just as a child raised in Montessori, who is helped to develop the ability to make choices, you also have the possibility to choose to grow, to change and to strive for a better version of yourself, both as a professional and as a human being.
This is was my short montesstory. I am irremediably loyal and grounded in Montessori and that makes me want to share it with you. Through the materials I design, through the thoughts I write, through conversations, I want to help you create your own montesstories. Maybe they’ll be among the first, maybe they’ll add up to many already existing ones, the important thing is to have a collection as full as possible.