Early Childhood Teacher Credential
The Montessori Early Childhood Teacher Credential course is a 22-month program comprised of 392 academic hours in-residence, and a minimum of 540 practicum hours which, when successfully completed, enables the adult learner with the knowledge required of the Montessori Early Childhood teacher. The core curriculum includes Practical Life, Language, Sensorial, Mathematics, Classroom Leadership, Physical and Life Science, Social Studies, and Geography.
Foundation course components provide the adult learner with the theory and philosophy for why and how we implement the core curriculum. The foundation components are Montessori Philosophy/Theory and Observation as well as Child Development. These course components provide the adult learner with additional information that deepen the understanding of the child and enrich the classroom experience.
The knowledge gained in the core curriculum is applied and deepened through the experience of the nine-month practicum at the early childhood level. The adult learner exemplifies a support of the child’s learning in a caring manner. The reflective practitioner behavior that the adult learner exhibits ensures a “learn how to learn” attitude, and continual professional development in the future.
The Early Childhood Credential program consists of three parts:
- Montessori Foundations Preparation
- Academic Phase
- Student Teaching (known as the Practicum)
|Montessori Foundations Phase||Self-Paced Preparation
The requirement of this segment of the program will be provided to adult learners upon acceptance to the program. Adult learners may proceed through the material at their own pace, but all requirements must be fulfilled prior to the start of the Academic phase. Completion time is estimated between 15-20 hours.
|The Montessori Foundation phase is designed to provide students an opportunity to prepare themselves for the teacher education experience at MCMS. This ensures that all adult learners arrive at MCMS having read and studied the same introductory material and having had the same important pre-requisite experiences. This establishes a baseline for the incoming class and provides students a skeletal framework for understanding Montessori theory and philosophy, upon which they may build.|
Summer I Academic Period
Monthly Weekend Seminars
Summer II Academic Period
|The academics portion is a rigorous, classroom intensive program. This period of study includes lectures, demonstrations, discussions, workshops, and practice/lab sessions. Adult learners will develop detailed manuals of lesson plans in each curriculum area and practice individual lesson presentations. This is a demanding and highly rewarding segment of the MCMS program.|
Practicum (Student Teaching)
Minimum 3 hours/day, 5 mornings/week for the duration of the 9-month academic year.
Three Practicum Weekend Seminars during the year
The student teaching Practicum provides adult learners a real-world classroom experience under the direct supervision of a qualified Montessori educator at a qualified and accredited Montessori school.
Alongside this Practicum, adult learners gather 3 times during the year to refresh and gain new skills and to come together to discuss the practical applications of what they have learned in their classroom setting.
All lectures and demonstration sessions will be held at the Greenspring Montessori School Campus at 10807 Tony Drive, Lutherville-Timonium, MD 21093.
All courses will be led by six AMS certified instructors. To learn more about their credentials and read their biographies, please click here.
In addition to the academic program, all students are required to complete a minimum of 540 hours of classroom work under the supervision of a certified Montessori teacher in an approved school. It is the adult learner’s responsibility to find a Practicum site approved by MCMS and affiliated with AMS unless a request showing sufficient cause for an exception is made to and granted by AMS. A list of names of participating schools and potential internship sites is available from MCMS upon request. The Practicum may not precede the academic phase of the program. The adult learner must work with children 2 1/2 to 6 years of age and must not assume full responsibility for the class. The Practicum is based on a minimum of three hours daily, five days a week for a full academic year. It is preferred and highly recommended that the adult learner works FULL-TIME in the classroom, as an Assistant Teacher, to receive the most benefit from the Practicum. Waivers for a self-directed internship must be approved by the Program Director and the Vice President for Professional Development of the American Montessori Society.
Adult learners will be observed and evaluated three times annually by an MCMS staff member or a consultant approved by the MCMS. Adult learners serving a self-directed Practicum will be observed five times during the academic year. Adult learners will be evaluated on their ability to integrate Montessori theory and methodology, child development principles, observation, instructional and classroom management techniques, and preparation of environment. If an adult learner receives an unsatisfactory evaluation, one or more additional observations will be scheduled by the field supervisor to review progress. Every effort will be made by MCMS to provide the additional support that may be needed. If another site is suggested, it will be the responsibility of the adult learner to make those arrangements.
The requirements for graduation include attendance for all scheduled hours (both required classes and practice teaching sessions); satisfactory completion of all required curriculum albums, oral, practical, and written examinations; satisfactory completion of the Practicum; and fulfillment of all assignments and financial obligations to the MCMS.
Master of Education, Goucher College
Interested students who complete the Early Childhood teacher certification program of MCMS are eligible for a Master of Education through Goucher College. Learn more about this program.
Maryland Center for Montessori Studies (MCMS) is operated by the Montessori Society of Central Maryland, Inc., located at Greenspring Montessori School in Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland.