About Montessori

History of Our School

In the middle of year, in 2003, Teddy Bears Montessori Preschool was started by Mrs Preshanie Bhagaloo (nee Maharaj) to take care of children in a safe, secure and nurturing environment, a home away from home. We started with one little boy on the first day and, through word of mouth, we grew from strength to strength doing what we were born to do.

We have become convinced that a Montessori education offers enormous advantages to all children. It is based on the principle that each child is an individual and develops at his or her own pace. We have seen our own children benefit from this approach and we are confident that your children will also enjoy growing and learning in this special environment.

For us, it is essential that children are educated in a caring and supportive environment where they are encouraged to work and play. We apply Montessori principles to instil in each child the love of learning that is at the heart of the Montessori education.

Our staff members have many years of experience in preschool teaching. I trained at The College of Modern Montessori in Linbro Park, I have also trained and am qualified as a self-esteem facilitator. I am currently completing my Degree in Educational Psychology & Kids Life Coaching. I have also been a life Coach under Jay Shetty and worked closely with his vision and wisdom with an international audience. I have gained so many mindfulness skills and lessons that I can add to our daily classes to ensure our children are calm, at ease, and can cope with the help of the right tools to make it through most age appropriate challenges.

I have worked in both the Montessori and the state educational sector. I work alongside Montessori-trained teachers*, assistants and classroom helpers to ensure that every child is able to develop at his or her own pace. We have the most dedicated staff and when you meet them you will see how friendly and caring they truly are!

Children generally start with us when they are walking (and between the ages of 12 months and two years old), however many parents have grown to love our philosophy and environment that we take in one or max 2 babies from 4 months old. Most parents live in close proximity to the school premises and because of the wonderful area we live in, we generally have children from diverse backgrounds. For us, different languages, cultures, nationalities and religions serve to enrich the learning environment. By keeping our school small, a wonderful sense of community among the school’s parents and school team is developed.

This handbook aims to answer the most common questions and to provide a ready reference for contact details and other information. It cannot replace face-to-face communication, so please feel free to ask us about anything regarding our handbook and school policies.

We look forward to both your and your child’s participation in our school.

Preshanie Zia Maharaj

School Owner and Principal of Teddy Bears Montessori

Our Staff & their Birthdays

Preshanie Zia Maharaj

Principal & Head Directress
31 July

Monica

Directress
17 June

Brenda

Care giver
7 Feb

Mendi

Caregiver
29 Nov

Ella

Holiday care/ cook
13 Jan

Who was Dr Maria Montessori?

Maria Montessori was one of the most influential pioneers of early childhood education. She was the first woman to graduate from the University of Rome Medical School. She based her educational method on observations she made in the classroom. Maria Montessori was friends with Helen Keller, Sigmund Freud, Mahatma Gandhi and Alexander Graham Bell. She died in Holland in 1952, leaving behind a legacy of a method of education that combines a philosophy with practical approach based on the central ideas of freedom for the child within a carefully planned and structured environment.

The Principles of the Montessori Method of Education

The whole child is educated: physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually. Children experience life through these 5 planes of development. Each area is vital in the overall development of the child. At Teddy Bears Montessori, we focus on each area, realising the importance of the interrelationship between areas of development.

Children learn through play. Each piece of equipment in the Montessori environment is designed to be fun yet also constructive
They have the freedom to choose which activity they would like to work with for the day, however it is the directress/ teacher’s responsibility to ensure that the child is being exposed to various area of work and development.
Children are encouraged to work individually or sometimes in small groups depending on the activity. Children learn at their own pace and not that of the directress/ teacher/ or the rest of his/her peers.
A child may repeat an exercise/ activity as many times as he/she wishes as it is through repetition that a child becomes a master at learning a skill and it also builds his/her concentration level.
They learn from concrete to more abstract based exercises
We make use of didactic materials (realistic and child-size), eg. heavy and light.
Maria Montessori said, “The hand is the instrument of man’s intelligence.” By this she emphasised the importance of the connection between the hand and the brain therefore the child is an active learner in a Montessori schooling environment.

Intrinsic Motivation

All children want to learn. There is no need for punishments and rewards. The child is free to choose an activity. They spontaneously choose the work that they want to do. This spontaneous activity encourages self-direction and self-reliance. If the children are self-motivated, their concentration and memory skills will develop.

Encouraging Self-Discipline

By allowing intrinsic motivation, self-discipline is developed. The child is protected from adult intervention as the equipment is self-correcting and stimulating as well as challenging.