The Maryland Center for Montessori Studies Early Childhood Teacher Certification Program offers a comprehensive course of study consisting of both an academic phase (320 hours of lecture/lab) and an internship (a minimum of 640 hours of supervised classroom work). The maximum student/instructor ratio for lecture/lab is 15:1. The outline of course content for the academic phase is as follows:

Montessori Theory and Philosophy of Education (30 lecture hours)

  • the history of the method
  • the nature of the young child
  • the absorbent mind
  • sensitive periods
  • freedom and independence
  • the prepared environment
  • the role of the teacher
  • the process of normalization

Child Development/Psychology (30 lecture hours)

  • theories of child development
  • stages of child development
  • physical development
  • cognitive development
  • emotional development
  • social development
  • current research on child development

Practical Life (20 lecture/16 lab hours)

  • the rationale of this area
  • basic movements
  • care of self
  • care of the environment
  • lessons of grace and courtesy
  • ground rules

Infant & Toddler Overview (6 lecture)

  • child development, age 18 months to 3 years
  • Montessori philosophy at this stage of development
  • developmental theories of Erik Erikson and Piaget
  • practical life, sensorial, language and math for toddlers

Sensorial (20 lecture/16 lab hours)

  • rationale for sensory training
  • visual discrimination
  • auditory discrimination
  • tactile, kinesthetic sense
  • stereognostic sense
  • olfactory sense
  • thermic sense

Mathematics (24 lecture/15 lab hours)

  • rationale
  • introduction to numeration
  • linear counting
  • introduction to the decimal system
  • functions of the decimal system
  • memorization of facts
  • introduction to fractions
  • path to abstraction

Language Instruction for Montessori Teachers (24 lecture/15 lab hours)

  • acquisition of language
  • receptive and expressive language
  • perceptual training
  • vocabulary development
  • language enrichment
  • pre-reading activities
  • reading
  • writing
  • functions of words

Geography & Multi-cultural Education (14 lecture/2 lab hours)

  • developing a sense of community
  • helpers in the community
  • holidays and festivals
  • land and water formations
  • political divisions (continents/countries)
  • cross-cultural competency

Science (8 lecture/2 lab hours)

  • philosophy of teaching science
  • identifying sciences in the Montessori curriculum
  • nature studies
  • hands-on science activities
  • biology nomenclature
  • environmental studies
  • earth science

Art (3 lecture/5 lab hours)

  • Montessori view of art
  • basic preparation
  • basic skills
  • appreciation of the work of masters
  • appreciation of the work of others

Music and Movement (6 lecture/6 lab hours)

  • importance of movement
  • yoga
  • songs
  • games
  • Montessori approach to music

Classroom Management (8 lecture hours)

  • philosophic overview
  • the teacher as role model
  • environmental design
  • communication & conflict resolution
  • group dynamics
  • discipline strategies

Parent Education (3 lecture hours)

  • teacher-parent-child relationship
  • importance of communication
  • involvement of parents in school setting
  • sharing the Montessori philosophy with parents
  • behavioral and disciplinary strategies

Observation and Record Keeping (15 lecture/30 field work)

  • importance of observation
  • observation strategies
  • observation components
  • the use of observations
  • record keeping

Administration (2 lecture hours)

  • licensing requirements
  • opening a school
  • budgetary planning
  • consultation and accreditation
  • staff development

Internship Practice of all academic courses. (640 hours)