What I like most about the Montessori Method - by: Patti Davis

One of my favorite things about Montessori is the fact that it works for every child no matter who they are or where they come from.  All children want to learn, but the areas of interest and the rate of learning vary.  A Montessori education addresses this by tailoring an individual program to the strengths and challenges of each student.  One child may spend three days learning division while another may require three weeks or even several months on the same endeavor. Maria Montessori spent a lot of time observing how and why children learn.  She understood that all children need their own time for mastery.  One of the wonderful things about a Montessori education is that children do not have to be worried about being ahead or behind of anyone else.

Using Encouragement

Great blog post, and wonderful parenting advice. What Ms. Schmidt says is so true!

Using Encouragement

A discouraged child is an unhappy child who is prone to acts of undue attention in the form of tantrums, whining, and more; acts of rebellion; acts of revenge, and acts of giving up and assumed disability. Oh woe is me!

It’s easy to be around a child full of encouragement. He cooperates and contributes to the common good, knowing that he is valued. He is responsible, self-motivated and eager to learn new things. He interacts with others in a friendly positive manner, forgives quickly, and stands up for himself when necessary. When facing an obstacle, the encouraged child retreats for a while to regroup and then resumes contact when ready.

Encouraging our children is a powerful parenting tool. The word “courage” comes from the Latin “cor” or heart. When we offer encouragement we offer our hearts, our courage, to our children, not praise or rewards. When we have to face something that frightens us, we want heart, not a cookie or some kind words.

What are the differences among encouragement, praise and rewards? 

With encouragement we offer the idea that mistakes are simply learning opportunities, and that to learn and grow, we all have to make mistakes. With encouragement we respect the child’s abilities, efforts and integrity to try to do the right thing. An encouraging phrase or two: I know you can figure this out. You’re good at solving problems; I’m sure you’ll figure it out. I love you no matter what.

Praise and rewards teach our children to depend on external input from others instead of learning to trust their own inner wisdom and standards. When we offer praise and rewards, we can catch ourselves because many times the first thing that comes out of our mouths is the word “I”: I’m so proud of you. I want to buy you this because you did that.

If we can swallow our “I’s” and look into our hearts to encourage, we should find a statement that begins with “you”: You must feel proud of the job you did. You really worked hard to do that. You deserve your success. You tried really hard. You’ll learn how to do that better. You are learning so much. You work like a trooper. You’re catching on. You’ve just about got it! You must have been practicing. You’re getting better at that everyday. 

Do you see the difference between praising and encouraging?

Praise and rewards get us believing that we are only okay if others tell us we are okay. Praise and rewards can keep us from trying something new for fear of making a mistake. With encouragement we learn from our mistakes and keep moving forward trying to do the right thing based on our internal compass. When we encourage we acknowledge how the other person must feel, and help them move forward in the direction of their choice, not our choice.

When you are feeling irritated, angry, hurt or helpless when dealing with your child, remember you are dealing with a discouraged child. Look into your heart and find some words of encouragement. You’ll be planting seeds for your child to feel a sense of belonging, independence, forgiveness, and self-assurance, all attributes of an encouraged child. 

Maren Schmidt



Posted By: Patti Burkhart Davis 

Better Than Ezra Benefit Concert

Benefit Concert for Franklin Montessori - March 14, 2013

Benefit Concert for Franklin Montessori - March 14, 2013


Ezralites ~

We have a special benefit concert to raise funds for the Montessori School of Franklin’s arts and music programs on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at The Cannery Ballroom in Nashville!

As music is part of our every day lives, we feel it is important to give kids a creative outlet to express themselves through arts and music. This benefit will help support and continue to grow those programs at the Montessori School of Franklin.

This intimate acoustic concert will feature your favorite BTE songs along with special guests. In true BTE fashion, you never know who might show up!

VIP tickets are available for purchase for $125 per ticket and include open bar, hors d’oeuvres and reserved area close to the stage. General Admission tickets for the concert are available in advance for $40 and $50 at the door. 

Proceeds from the event will go directly to the Montessori School of Franklin to enhance their arts and music programs as well as to buy musical equipment for the children.

See you in a couple weeks!

~ Kevin and Tom

Purchase Tickets......



MSF Teacher Named to Best of List


The Montessori School of Franklin is proud to announce the naming of our very own, Bunmi Anifowoshe as one of Middle Tennessee's Best Private School Teachers. This honor was given to Ms. Bunmi and only two others from the Nashville Scene's Kid's Readers Poll, Best of 2012.

Ms. Bunmi teaches the two and a half to five year olds at MSF, and has been with our school since 2008. She received her BSC in Microbiology from Obafemi Awolowo University, lle-lfe and International Diploma, Montessori Education from Heritage House Montessori Center (Affiliate of College of Modern Montessori, South Africa). 

"Ms. Bunmi models the philosophy of Dr. Maria Montessori through her work as an educator and colleague, said Patti Davis, Montessori Education Director . She is dedicated to preparing a nurturing environment everyday that encourages each child to develop their full potential. Her passion for learning shines through the children."