Frequently asked questions

Is Montessori just for special learners such as the gifted or those 'with learning difficulties?
Maria Montessori started her research and methods with children experiencing learning difficulties. Because her methods were so successful, they were extended to a wide range of children. The environment and methods used in the Montessori classroom are designed to ensure the holistic development and success of all children.


Do Montessori classrooms push children too far?
Central to the Montessori philosophy is the idea of allowing each child to develop at her own individual pace. Montessori children who are advanced compared to traditional expectations for their age level do not reflect artificial acceleration or pressured instruction. Rather, they reflect the vast possibilities and potential when children are allowed to learn at their own pace and pursue what is interesting to them during their sensitive periods of learning in a scientifically prepared environment.


Is Montessori just for preschool children?
Montessori is a philosophy of education that starts at birth and continues through adulthood. The majority of the Montessori programs offered are preschools (ages 3-6) but there are a growing number of infant and toddler programs as well as 6-9, 9-12, and 12-15 programs.


Is Montessori out of date?
Quite to the contrary actually. Dr. Maria Montessori was a woman ahead of her time and the insights she discovered and observed about children in the early 1900s are just now being confirmed and praised by contemporary research and evaluation.   Traditional educators are adopting some of the Montessori practices in their everyday curriculum. Some adaptations to the original Montessori curriculum have been updated (e.g., modifications to the Practical Life exercises) to keep it culturally relevant, but the basic pedagogy has not changed much since Dr. Montessori's lifetime because the developmental stages of humans have not changed.


Are Montessori schools religious?
The Montessori philosophy itself is not religiously oriented. Many schools follow the principle of celebrating and learning about every religion from a cultural viewpoint.

Diversity is an integral part of learning about the world and its happenings. Montessori schools also work to respect the specific religious needs and desires of each member of the classroom.

AL-ALI INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL does not have a religious orientation or denomination and honors and respects all religions.


What about transition and traditional schools?
A school environment naturally fosters inner discipline, self motivation, love of learning and a sense of order, the skill necessary for successful learning. These skills accompany them throughout their academic journey in any environment. A child’s first educational experiences affect the type of learner they will be throughout their lives. Good communication in the transition of a child to any new environment is essential. Both parents and a child’s former teacher must help facilitate a transition through realistic communication of a child’s development and skills.