A View of a Typical Montessori Classroom

I thought it might be nice to share some pictures I have of my last classroom. The school I taught at was The Montessori School of North Hoffman – a really fantastic school in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. While I was there, they became accredited by the American Montessori Society – only the 42nd school in the US to do so at that time.

I had a 6-9 classroom there for two years (1998 – 2000). As part of the accreditation process, I had to make a list of every single item in my classroom. This list eventually became the Comprehensive List for 6-9 (after I added more items and re-formatted it). The people that evaluated us during accreditation had many suggestions for me for improvement, but one thing they all agreed on was that my classroom and its materials were top-notch.

Here is a shot of one side of my classroom; you’re looking at Zoology on the left (the red bins), then Geography in the middle, then History down at the end:

Here is an upclose look at Zoology (you’ll see our class lizard in his tank on the top shelf, then below that are all the vertebrate and invertebrate nomenclature cards in the red bins); there’s actually another shelf of Zoology that you can’t see here:

Finally, to the far right are two shelves of History (I couldn’t find any upclose shots of Geography):

Here are a few more shots of my classroom; this is one of my favorites because it’s not posed, it just captures the day-to-day activities of the classroom:

We studied Asia one year, and when we talked about China we had a special Chinese lunch one day. To be more authentic, I took the legs off of all our tables (it took forever!) so we could sit on the floor. We ate Chinese noodle soup, using chopsticks for the noodles and then sipping the broth from our bowls. The local Chinese restaurant donated placemats, chopsticks, and fortune cookies. It was very memorable!

And yes, here’s me serving up the soup. This was about seven years ago, but I don’t think I’ve changed that much: