“Free the child’s potential and transform him in the world.”  Dr. Maria Montessori 

Primary: Ages 3-6

Drew Hammer C

Practical life activities in the outdoor prepared environment.

Montessori is an evidence-based approach to education that grows from Dr. Maria Montessori’s scientific observations of young children more than a century ago at the Casa dei Bambini, a school she founded for underprivileged children in Rome. The entire Montessori program, including materials, lessons, classroom environment and student-teacher dynamic, is designed to meet the specific intellectual, social and emotional needs of children at each stage of their development, from infancy through adolescence.

“It is not true that I invented what is known as the Montessori method, said Dr. Montessori.  “I have studied the child, taken what the child has given me and expressed it and that is what is called the Montessori method.”

Montessori works with — not against — human nature to nurture a child’s natural desire to learn.  Dr. Steven Hughes, president of the American Academy of Pediatric Neuropsychology, calls Montessori the first brain-based approach to learning because it is based upon scientific principles of human development. The Montessori primary curriculum helps young children:




The primary classroom: A “laboratory for learning”


The outdoor prepared environment is an extension of the primary classroom.

The three-to-six year old is a very active and eager student. The Montessori classroom environment has been called a “laboratory for learning,” designed around principles of child development to engage young children in purposeful exploration and discovery.

With 40 years of experience working with young children, Mountaineer Montessori offers a fully-implemented primary program, with credentialed faculty and a rich, rotating menu of authentic materials and lessons, focusing on the following areas: cultural, math, language, practical life and sensorial.





Follow the child

Observation is a foundation to learning.

Observation is a foundation to learning.

Children work at their own pace using beautiful, research-based materials and lessons that inspire interest and  encourage appreciation of beauty and order. Students are given individual presentations on the materials and are free to choose from a wide choice of activities.

All of these activities the lay the foundation of academic learning to come. Our faculty closely observe each child’s level of readiness for the next lesson and guide him or her through the comprehensive Montessori curriculum.  Children also engage in daily group experiences in order to build community and to develop their social skills.  Most importantly, children in the primary classroom develop a love of their school community and a love of learning, finding peaceful joy in their pursuit of knowledge.



Montessori primary curriculum


Language lessons in the indoor prepared environment.

The Montessori primary curriculum includes:






Academic preparation


Independently selecting lessons in the classroom.

Peer-reviewed research finds that children with a Montessori primary education outperform their traditional school counterparts in reading and math and demonstrate higher levels of “executive skills” (including independence, problem-solving, critical thinking and collaboration) that lead to future academic and social success. We invite you to learn more about Montessori outcomes and our alumni.






Tour our primary prepared environments

BTS CWe invite you to take a photo tour of our primary learning areas:

A Laboratory for Learning: MMS Primary Classrooms Back to School

A Montessori Morning: Learning in the Outdoor Environment 

Play is the Work of Childhood: At Work on the MMS Playground




Creative expression

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Song workshop with Mira Stanley and Chuck E. Costa.

Creative expression is embedded throughout the Montessori primary curriculum, fostering students’ development through art, music and movement.  Classroom lessons are furthered enriched through Kindermusik and Orff classes led by Karen Morris, art with Barrie Kaufman and workshops with artists-in-residence.

Meet our MMS Faculty Specialists. To learn more about our music program, please follow this link.






Primary staff

Primary Lead Guide Rachel Scarpelli prepares her classrooms for back to school.

Primary Lead Guide Rachel Scarpelli prepares her classroom for back to school.

MMS currently offers two fully-equipped primary classrooms, each staffed by two AMS/AMI trained Montessori educators — a lead guide and a classroom assistant. Their leadership is supported by two certified, full-time, onsite Montessori mentors, who bring more than 50 years of experience in authentic Montessori primary classrooms. Meet our MMS Primary Faculty.











Primary class schedule

Developing the senses in the outdoor classroom.

Developing the senses in the outdoor classroom.

Primary students attend class five days per week with hours based on age:









A Day in the Life of a Montessori Primary Classroom 

A Day in the Life of Baan Dek from Baan Dek on Vimeo.


Observations from a Montessori grandmother


“Look, Nana, this is Europe!” exclaimed