First Day of School is August 19
Arbor Graduation is May 29 at 6pm
Unitarian Universalist Congregation
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If you’re looking for the real truth about a school, the Montessori approach is to go straight to the source. Visit. Watch. Listen. We encourage you to talk to the children, teachers and staff. But there’s something uniquely powerful about the perspective of a parent. Especially if you are a parent too. Here, in their own words, are Arbor parents expressing what they love about Arbor Montessori.
“(Arbor kids) do great things and they go out and have lots of choices. They are comfortable with who they are, they’ve gotten the tools they need to learn, they're not afraid to ask questions, they're not afraid to keep going back until they get it. They are very well prepared, far better than most of their peers, so they'll prosper in virtually any environment”.
“They have real practical skills, very transportable life skills. Conflict resolution, building a business… just getting along with everyone and treating everyone with respect. If everybody in my office went to Montessori, it would be great.”
“The foundation of self-confidence is huge. They know who they are and they are comfortable with who they are.”
“Confidence. It’s very key to what Arbor is about and it’s very clear why that’s important. People who are confident go out into the world and do what they want to do. There will always be obstacles but they're not downtrodden. They don’t have their personality squashed out of them or get forced into a mold.”
“I had a daughter who attended Arbor for 8 years and had an abundance of choices for high school. I can’t imagine that you want anything more for your children than that they have choices.”
“ They can get into Harvard… if they want to get into Harvard.”
“They love to learn. The loving to learn here just never stops. If you see a ten-year-old who loves to go to school, that’s not the societal norm unfortunately. I look at this middle school and think ‘Man! I wish I could’ve gone there! That would’ve been so cool"
“The love of learning that has been embedded in him as a foundation is transportable to the grave. He will take that with him forever.”
“Children here learn how to learn. When they think of something they're interested in, they seek it out and do research about it. They talk to their friends and come up with field trips. There's no end to what they can find out about. As soon as they come up with something they want to know more about, they understand that it’s up to them to pursue that. That’s something you don’t get into other schools.”
“My daughter has already developed that intellectual curiosity to not say ‘Well, I’ve done eighth grade math, I can cruise for awhile.’ Instead it's ‘No, I want to learn more.'’”
“What’s great to me about Arbor is that the kids are invested in their learning. They're allowed to go. They're not bound to a curriculum that’s only for third grade or second grade.”
“To me, being the biggest non-conformist you will ever know, it’s huge to me that there’s no limit for her. She as an individual isn’t limited to the seventh and eighth grade books they picked for that year. She can go as far as she wants to go. She doesn’t have to go home to me and her dad and say ‘What can I do now? I’ve run out of stuff.’"
“Not only does she have the curiosity to learn and be stimulated, but she also has a sense of comfort and ease with taking initiative and trying new things. My husband and I don’t want her to ever feel like she has to depend on us to navigate her world… feeling as though she can’t make decisions- good decisions—for herself and her community, without having to call home and check"
“What we aimed for here and what we’ve gotten here is that our children are happy, confident, feel like they can comfortably explore what they want to explore, understand about being part of a community and giving back and making positive influences and positive additions and contributions to the world.”
“It validates their ideas and reasons for doing things. It’s a life lesson. As you grow up, you want to confidently portray yourself and not have an internal dialogue with yourself, saying ‘Should I say this?’”
“My daughter… Her piano teacher is always telling me ‘oh that’s right she is a Montessori child.’ She’s writing her own songs. She says ‘You are proving to me that my (other) students aren’t doing what they're capable of doing!’”
“They’ve set it up in such a way that they follow Montessori principles in everything they do. They're respectful to parents. They give parents information… honest open communication. That kind of thing doesn’t always happen at other schools."
“The difference at Arbor is, here, the community is driven by the teachers and the staff to be Montessori first and foremost. Everything else, the profitability, the business, the policies, the whatever, all are second to that core philosophy.”
“When you cross the bridge and walk into the hallway, it feels from top to bottom, no matter who it is, that they're deeply embedded in this philosophy —the way the building is structured, the way the playground is structured, the way the teachers interact with the kids, the office. It feels like everyone here is flying the flag, which is important if you’re spending the money you’re spending to come to a private school. You want to be able to say that this entire staff believes in the philosophy and has the child’s best interest at heart and is investing in that direction at this institution."
“Arbor doesn’t operate out of a mode of fear. A lot of schools operate out of a mode of fear, especially in a down economy -- focused on numbers and getting as many kids as possible. And to do so, they end up going outside of where a Montessori belief might take you."
“We appreciate the teachers’ level of engagement and commitment at Arbor. It is very important to us - their ability to really talk freely, openly, carefully, clearly about what is happening through the process and the meaning behind what’s happening through the process. We find that to be unusually impressive. Even with other Montessori schools, you would have a director who would be able to explain why and what’s happening in the schools but you don’t often have the same type of engagement with the teachers.”
“What’s happening here goes beyond Montessori. There's something, and I don’t know what it is —there's an aura. That sounds crunchy granola and I don’t mean that. There's something that goes on here that creates bonds between families and bonds between teachers."