About Montessori



Montessori education is an ‘aid to life’, educating the whole child through supporting each child’s intellectual, physical, social and emotional growth, fostering self-esteem, a sense of joy, respect for others, and promoting a lifelong passion for learning. It emphasizes a child’s developmental needs, following their natural curiosity, independence, freedom of movement, and love of learning.


In our carefully prepared Montessori classrooms, children are free to explore and engage with a wide range of hands-on materials at their own pace, allowing them to develop self-discipline, problem-solving skills, and a sense of responsibility.


Karingal Primary School offers a unique Montessori Influenced Curriculum aligned with the Victorian Curriculum.


Further reading: https://montessori.org.au/about-montessori





The primary goal of a Montessori program is to help each child reach their full potential in all areas of life. This unique approach instills a love for learning, nurtures independence, and fosters a sense of responsibility in children.


There are many reasons why you would choose the Montessori method at Karingal Primary:


Child-centred & individualised:

  • Tailored learning experience to meet each child’s unique strengths, needs and interests.
  • Empowers children to learn at their own pace and according to their individual style.
  • Ample opportunities for students to explore concepts in depth and delve deeper into subjects of personal interest.


Hands-on learning:

  • Strong emphasis on experiential learning, where children actively engage in hands-on activities through muti-sensory, sequential, and self-correcting materials.
  • Children explore and learn through experimentation and the process of trial and error, fostering deeper engagement and enables them to retain information effectively.


Self-directed learning:

  • Promotes self-directed learning by giving children a voice, empowering them to choose subjects and how they learn it.
  • Supports the development of independence, decision-making abilities, self-motivation, self-discipline, and a sense of responsibility.


Mixed-age classrooms:

  • Typically consist of three year levels.
  • Crucial to self-development in terms of leadership, role-modelling, respect for different abilities, opinions and personalities, social skills, a sense of fairness, compassion and desire to assist others.
  • Younger children learn from peers and older children consolidate their own learning through teaching younger peers.
  • Promotes collaboration and opportunities for a variety of safe, lasting, and meaningful friendships.


Respect for the child:

  • Recognises children as capable learrners who are respected and trusted to make decisions.
  • Explicit teaching and appropriate resources and opportunities for each child to function in a safe and positive environment.
  • Fosters relationships, mutual respect, self-confidence and a willingness to try new things.


Whole-child development:

  • Emphasis on the natural development of the whole child, including cognitive, physical, emotional and social growth.
  • A comprehensive education that cultivates confident, independent, and compassionate individuals.


Further reading: https://montessori.org.au/node/4689



Mastery of Fundamental Skills and Basic Core Knowledge

  • Students learn required Victorian Curriculum fundamentals, including math facts, spelling, vocabulary, grammar, sentence analysis, writing, and library research skills.
  • Students also explore mathematics, science, technology, literature, art, music, history, language, geography, civics, economics, anthropology, and huma societies.
  • Integrated activities to learn life skills.


Cosmic Education

  • Clear understanding of the natural world, of human knowledge, and of themselves, and an awareness of interdependence and gratitude.
  • Preparation for adolescence as independent, confident, responsible, emotionally intelligent individuals, balanced in physical, intellectual and social achievements.
  • Academically and practically prepared to pursue self-education in many areas; to make responsible decisions; to recognize limits and give, ask for, and receive help, as needed.


Individually Chosen Research

  • Students explore topics that capture their imagination through independent reading and library research.
  • Children gather information, assemble reports, and teach what they have learned to their classmates.







Based on helping the natural development of the human being

Based on the transfer of a national curriculum

Children learn their own pace and follow their own individual interest

Children learn from a set curriculum according to a timeframe that is the same for everyone

Children teach themselves using materials specially prepared for the purpose

Children are taught by the teacher

Child is an active participant in learning

Child is a passive participant in learning

Understanding comes through the childs’ own experiences via the materials and the promotion of children’s ability to find things out for themselves

Learning is based on subjects and is limited to what is given

Learning is based on the fact that physical exploration and cognition are linked

Children sit at desks and learn from a whiteboard and worksheets

Child can work where he/she is comfortable, move around and talk at will while not disturbing others

Child is usually assigned own chair and encouraged to sit still and listen during group sessions

The teacher works in collaboration with the children

The class is teacher led

The child’s individual development brings its own reward and therefore motivation

Motivation is achieved by a system of reward and punishment

Environment and method encourage internal self-discipline

Teacher acts as primary enforcer of external discipline

Child works as long as he/she wishes on chosen project

Child generally given specific time limit for work

Uninterrupted work cycles

Block time, period lessons

Mixed age groups

Same age groups

Working and learning matched to the social development of the child

Working and learning without emphasis on the social development of the child

Shared emphasis on intellectual, social, emotional and spiritual development

Main emphasis on intellectual development

Shared focus on the acquisition of academic, social, practical and life skills

Main focus on academics

Source: https://montessori.org.au/differences-between-montessori-and-traditional-education

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