Montessori teaching methods are based on children's natural learning habits at different developmental stages. Training for Montessori teaching isn't widely offered online, although some programs combine online coursework and in-person fieldwork. A practicum may be required for these programs.
Online Montessori teaching training is typically provided by for-profit online businesses that specialize in this type of education. Students learn to communicate with, teach and evaluate students using the Montessori method. This method focuses on creating classroom settings and using materials and projects to support specific principles such as freedom of learning choices, self-discipline, motivation, concentration, and respect.
While some online Montessori training programs accept students with high school diplomas, most require a bachelor's degree. Some online programs award non-academic certificates of completion that are certified by the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE).
An online Montessori program may enroll students in cohorts - groups that take the same classes together, and programs typically utilize asynchronous coursework. Students learn through videos of lectures and Montessori teachers conducting lessons in classrooms. Students take tests and receive assignments and feedback from instructors through an online course delivery system, via e-mail, online discussion groups, and over the telephone.
Montessori online classes cover areas such as childhood development, child-adult relationships, the Montessori class environment and teacher-parent relationships. Courses in areas such as math, language, spelling and handwriting detail how to use Montessori methods in specific subject areas. Classes may include the following:
- Montessori Principles
- Child Observation and Development
- Language Arts
- Spelling and Phonics
- Whole Numbers
- Administering Montessori Programs
Students typically must complete a supervised teaching practicum at a school approved by the online training program. During the practicum, students create and implement lessons under the supervision of a trained Montessori instructor.
Some online Montessori training programs provide the option to spend several months as a teaching resident at a Montessori school. During this practicum, students experience what it's like to be a full-time member of a Montessori school staff. Online programs may require students to provide videotapes of their teaching experiences.
Montessori teaching training isn't commonly offered online, though programs with fully online coursework combined with in-person teaching experiences can be found. These programs often use a cohort format and may culminate in non-academic certificates.