My daughter was in the midst of her second year at Melrose Montessori when the pandemic forced schools to close and quickly develop a plan for remote learning. She was on the brink of beginning to read as we faced this transition, and I was concerned with whether the new virtual environment would be sufficient to support her at this pivotal time in her education. I needn’t have worried. Shortly after beginning virtual classes, my daughter was reading and something else happened that I didn’t expect. I was given a unique window into the Montessori classroom, and it reaffirmed what I already knew. There is a clarity of educational vision within the Montessori system. The curriculum is rich and the lessons are thoughtful. The children are encouraged to follow their natural curiosity and to problem-solve. They are also taught to set high standards and be proud of their achievements. Academic skills are taught within the context of teaching children about the world beyond their gaze, so that they may someday become competent, engaged, inquisitive contributors. Montessori sets lofty goals, and as Mrs. Arloro is wont to say, “the children do not disappoint.” Getting a better view into my daughter’s education has been a silver-lining of this difficult time. I’ve been amazed at Melrose Montessori’s ability to respond quickly to an unprecedented challenge and effectively translate the Montessori experience into the virtual classroom. I’ve also been heartened to see firsthand just how much the staff cares about our kids. It’s a special place.
The Montessori Method was not designed to be virtual. Yet what is so impressive about this school is how well the teachers have translated Montessori principles – to the extent possible – to virtual format. Melrose Montessori teachers have always placed the needs, capabilities, and joy of children at the center of all they do, but their dedication has truly shined in the transition to virtual school.
Through this challenging time, school has continued to be a safe, nurturing, and uplifting environment for my 4 year old son. He continues to interact with his teachers and classmates several times a day, learning new concepts and vocabulary about a range of topics (e.g. animals in New England, orchestras), and skills he can practice at home (e.g. multiplication, tying knots). He has been especially excited to rehearse for the school’s virtual performance, complete with costume. Virtual school has given me a unique opportunity to witness my son’s development and how his teachers help to foster it.
This educational experience is possible thanks to the teachers going above and beyond expectations. For instance, the directress and my son’s main teacher have proactively emailed and called me to check in my son’s and my needs and concerns. They have made multiple deliveries of materials, specifically for my child’s interests and capabilities, to my house. I can attest to their enthusiastic willingness to improve their approach to virtual school, not just during the steep learning curve of March 2020, but afterwards as well.
Clear, forward-thinking leadership, and brilliant, dedicated teachers, have guided Melrose Montessori through the shock of the pandemic with grace and aplomb. As we move forward in uncertain times, I am confident that Head of School Anissa Arloro, and all the wonderful teachers and staff, will continue to provide the best educational experience possible for their students.
Melrose Montessori has created an engaging, challenging and fun virtual environment that has delivered above and beyond. With small classes that regularly meet, my son has ample opportunity each day for specific, meaningful instruction. It has been a quality-of-life saver in our home during this public health crisis.
As a bonus, I now know a great deal about polygons, just from eavesdropping on class.
Melrose Montessori was a beacon of light, structure, and routine in the midst of an unprecedented spring rife with unrelenting blood, sweat, and tears. The incredible teachers and lessons offered made it possible to pick ourself up and carry on. The Montessori philosophy sets you up to be independent and adaptive. George loved all his classes and was always excited to see his teachers and classmates and stay connected with them even when they couldn’t be in the classroom together. He had a great balance of social (morning circle), intellectual (small group classes in math/science/nature, art/music, reading), and physical education (creative movement and musical dance). He was also completely engaged and independently occupied which gave us time as parents time to do our own work alongside his class time. Does it compare to being physically in the room with other humans? No. Is it a style of learning that every child will connect with? No. But, Melrose Montessori is ABSOLUTELY and without a doubt the BEST program for our child and if it is the right fit for your family, you will appreciate the exceptional quality of education and support with which both parents and children are equipped.
Melrose Montessori School is amazing in keeping their routine under no-matter-what situation, even COVID-19 cannot stop them providing high quality classes. The good-morning session allows kids to chat together, as they did in school, then the contents cover so many things, such as etiquette, geology, biology, science, etc. After that is a short break, then follows the small group class, which focuses more on language and math. The art class comes after another short break, in which the teacher introduces musical instruments, dances and art histories from various cultures. The art class ends before lunch, and after the lunch break, young kids can enjoy the story time. For the last month, to prepare for the final musical performance, kids learn and practice dances through virtual meetings, which is fun and quite effective. My daughter loves all the sessions and is willing to practice things learned everyday, we can observe her improvements day-by-day. We really appreciate the teachers who contribute so much into designing, improving and perfecting the classes, and we are happy that we made this decision by choosing Melrose Montessori School.
I can’t say enough good things about Melrose Montessori School – both pre and post COVID education – and both at the primary pre-school level and elementary level education.
Quickly after stay at home orders and school closures this March, Melrose Montessori was in touch with parents, seeking input and feedback and putting together remote learning programs – enabling parents and students, including my 6 year old son, to stay connected with classmates and teachers real-time. On-line learning via zoom and google, although not the same as being present in the classroom has still been very effective. The on-line curriculum is thoughtful and with the live instruction, and dynamic dialogue happening real time, the remote learning has enabled my son to continue to progress in school, and to be engaged and connected with the school and teachers he loves. He is exposed to many new things on a daily basis – and the work done to simulate the traditional school day from 8:30 to 2:30 has been appreciated. From a daily school-wide greeting & check-in, to geometry, geography, measuring angles, studying plant specimens and local wildlife (a favorite for my bird lover!), grace and courtesy lessons, an impressive global art & music curriculum, an active & engaging PE class, and even learning & performing a dance routine via video for the school’s annual year-end performance – Melrose Montessori School has gone above and beyond in adapting and providing thoughtful and relevant academic programming, which has facilitated a regular routine, and a lot of learning from our home – all the more appreciated during this trying period.
I am so happy to have Melrose Montessori School in our community – and even happier to have made the decision to keep our son there beyond the wonderful pre-school program. The materials, environment, traditions, and the dedicated and passionate educators and administrators – headed by Anissa Arloro – make this a wonderful place for children to learn and grow – and our family feels lucky to be part of the Melrose Montessori family.
My children, ages 9 and 11, have benefited greatly from Melrose Montessori’s virtual program. From the Google Classroom and the materials to the live classes and social interaction, this program has kept my children engaged and developing during these incredibly important years.
Our experience over the last several months with Melrose Montessori’s virtual program has been nothing short of amazing. The time, attention, and dedication to details and the children’s individual needs have stood out as exceptional. My 5-year-old has been engaged with the material and anticipates his many virtual lessons with excitement. Whether it is a 30+ child group where Mrs. Arloro beautifully orchestrates and involves a large number of children, a small group lesson with Mrs. Scioletti or a dance rehearsal with Ms. Simona, these virtual experiences have been diverse and effective. We truly feel grateful to have been a part of a school that went above and beyond in a time of sudden and unfortunate circumstances.