Nancy McHugh

I find that the most significant benefits from a Montessori education are the ability my daughter (Arden McHugh-Braham) has at young age to think critically and compassionately, to be an independent learner and to be excited about what she learns. I also find that the education is both broad and deep, which is hard to achieve at any age. I think a lot of this happens because the students are learning in multiple ways in multiple settings. I appreciate that the Montessori model recognizes that learning isn’t about a powerful figure in front of the classroom conveying information, but about the co-production of knowledge and learning between students and teachers in a variety of settings.

How long has your student been at NM?

Seven years. She started right after she turned 2 years old.

How has your child grown as a person at NM?

I value the educational benefits of my daughter’s education, but I also value the social and personal benefits. I find that my daughter is able to think about the lives of other people in situations that are very different than hers in a compassionate way without viewing them as “objects”. I also admire her ability to be both connected to others and independent at the same time. Also value how much respect my daughter has for her teachers. I believe that this comes from the high level of respect they show their students.

Any other comments?

I think what I admire most about NM is that my daughter is still inquisitive and excited about learning at an age that I begin to hear other kids say they hate going to school. My daughter comes home 99% of the time excited and talking about what she learned that day even when the work that day may have been a struggle for her. NM is good at finding the needed approach for each child and views each child as an individual. I think this is a rarity in education today.

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