Dear Bilingual Montessori Friends:
I want to take this opportunity to explain a bit more about the structure and content of our Bilingual Montessori CC series.
Second language learning in Montessori has been “an elephant in the room” very much with us, but not officially acknowledged. Therefore, all over the world, guides and school leaders have been quietly finding their way in relative isolation. These talks are one way we want to come together and make ourselves visible, share and learn.
Since there is no specific training for this work, we are all “Practitioner Experts” of varying degrees. Our first speaker, Birgitta Berger, is exemplary: she has fused her Montessori and language teaching training with years of work in the classroom and independent study. As we began to get to know each other, she said “I am so glad not to be doing this alone now.”
I have also invited people to speak who I have met, or gotten to know better, in the process of completing a Case Study Research Project that is central to our work. They shared inspired, thoughtful practices that deserve a larger audience.
In the coming months, you will have the opportunity to listen to Guides, School Leaders and Language Specialists and a chance to participate yourself. The format of each talk will vary: some may be a conversation between two people, a presentation with breakout rooms for you to interact with each other, and others a more straightforward presentation with Q & A at the end.
Because we believe the local socio-linguistic context is a key factor to why some practices work in some places and not in others, I, as the host, will “set the stage” to give you an idea of the school’s local context. Then each speaker will share a slice of their experience which we hope will inspire you in your work.
The next three sessions Feb 15, March 1 and March 15 are with Elementary Guides. In April, May and June we will hear from Children’s House Guides and an Elementary Language Specialist.
This Wednesday, February 15 at 16h (CET) Joanna Stewart will share some of her strategies for meeting the needs of ELLs (English language learners) in her Elementary environment. Full disclosure: Joanna is a good friend and colleague who works in the school I founded Madrid Montessori.
“Approaches to Montessori English Immersion -
One School’s Experience”
15 February 2023
Joanna will be sharing her experience of participating in an evolving bilingual Montessori program over the past 12 years. Her insights about how to build programs that create the conditions where children can communicate and understand through speaking, reading, and writing in another language.
Takeaway: factors that can tip the balance to create spontaneous conditions for the acquisition of another language.
"Strategies to Support an Immersive Second Language Experience in a Montessori 6-12 Classroom"
1 March 2023
Join us as Laura discusses key aspects of organising the adults in a Montessori Elementary classroom to enhance opportunities for target language acquisition. Find out how she promotes a love of reading and uses it to support language progression.
Takeaway: How to create activities and games to inspire second language learning in your Montessori environment.
You can register for these talks at our Website Homepage and you will find more details about our Ambassadors at our Community section where we will create an archive of the recorded talks. The first talk with Birgitta Berger is available there now!