What does it take to get Montessori certified? Becoming a Montessori teacher requires specialized training and certification. The process of getting Montessori certified involves several steps, including completing a Montessori teacher training program, gaining practical experience in a Montessori classroom, and passing an assessment. Keep reading for more information about what it takes to get Montessori certified.

A photograph of two generic certificates. In the left-to-center frame is a certificate lying flat. What it is lying on isn't visible. The certificate has an ornate gold border that looks a bit like sideways pineapples on its left edge, In the bottom part of the frame, the bottom border of the certificate is gold, but looks more like owls. In the bottom left corner of this certificate is a reddish seal. The seal is round with pinked edges. The second certificate is on top of the first certificate. It is at an angle, with its left top corner pointing toward 7 o'clock. This certificate has a different border design. It is black, and much thicker and geometric. The word "Certificate" is visible at a slight angle center from. It is written in massed produced calligraphy.
Becoming a Montessori teacher requires specialized training and certification.

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Montessori Education: Brief History/Overview

The Montessori model for educating young children is a unique approach to education that focuses on the individual needs of each child. It is based on the principles and methods developed by Dr. Maria Montessori (1870-1952). Montessori, an Italian physician and educator, recognized the innate potential of young children and their ability to teach themselves. The role of the classroomteacher is to facilitate this learning process, acting as a guide rather than an authority figure. Dr. Montessori taught her first class of children in Italy, in 1907. Word of her success spread quickly. Schools across Europe adopted the Montessori method in the following years. By 1913, Montessori’s model of education had made it across the Atlantic Ocean, to the shore of North America. Early proponents of Montessori’s method in North America include Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison, credited with inventing the telephone and the incandescent lightbulb, respectively.

A black-and-white photograph of Alexander Graham Bell circa 1913. He is seated at his desk, which takes up the bottom and lower right frame. His gaze is focused looking down on the paper on which he writes with a pen in his right hand. In his left hand he is holding a pipe. His hair and his beard are gray and he is wearing wire-frame spectacles. He is quite wrinkled. indistinct black background.
Alexander Graham Bell, credited with inventing the telephone, was an early patron of Montessori education.

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The Montessori Educational Association was established in 1913 for the purposes of promoting Montessori education and providing training for Montessori teachers in North America. Since 1960 the governing body of Montessori in North America is the American Montessori Society. The American Montessori Society is a non-profit, professional organization for Montessori educators in the United States. Its main duties include:

  • Providing support and resources for Montessori teachers and schools
  • Accrediting Montessori teacher education programs
  • Advocating for the Montessori method of education
  • Promoting the understanding and use of Montessori education among the general public.

Montessori is the fastest-growing model of education in the world today. Becoming a Montessori-certified teacher is job insurance. It also allows you the flexibility to work around the world. So, what exactly does it take to become a certified Montessori teacher?

Montessori Certification: Get a Degree

If you don't already have a college degree, you'll have to get a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. This will add up to four years to your journey to obtaining Montessori certification. A lot can happen in four years. College is a wonderful place to find yourself and embrace your interests. Though it would seem logical to pursue a degree in an educational field, it’s not necessary. Montessori teachers come from a vast array of fields and disciplines. Diploma in hand, the next step toward certification is finding a training program.

Photo of a rolled up piece of cream colored paper secured with a red ribbon in the center that’s probably an inch wide. The two ends of the ribbon are cut in a mountain shape (upside down V). Visible in the center of the ribbon is a gold medallion with a mortarboard (graduation cap with a tassel) and a tiny gold diploma. Against white isolate.
The first step for becoming a certified Montessori teacher is to obtain a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.

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Montessori Certification: Training Programs

Becoming a Montessori teacher requires one to complete a Montessori teacher training program. These programs are typically offered by Montessori teacher training centers or state and private colleges and universities. They provide the theoretical and practical knowledge necessary to understand and implement the Montessori method. The programs can be on-site or online. Chances are there is a Montessori teacher training program nearby – click here to find out how close.

A young brown-skinned woman with cornrows/braids is visible center frame she is wearing a slightly wrinkled light blue oxford cloth button front long sleeve shirt. In her right hand which is in the left frame she is holding a yellow pencil as if riding in a spiral-bound notebook. There is a white coffee mug in the very left part of the frame. In the right bottom part of the frame is a silver laptop computer that is open. The young woman is looking at something on the computer. She is smiling. Her smile reveals that she has orthodontic braces on her teeth. The background is out of focus but is most white with a couple of plants.
If you are studying online, you may be able to finish your coursework more quickly.

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The coursework for the training program takes between one and two years, depending on a variety of factors. If you are studying online, you may be able to finish your coursework more quickly than if you are taking classes in person. Montessori training consists of mastering an in-depth understanding and working knowledge of the five core principles of Montessori education, as well as learning which materials are appropriate for which age groups.

Montessori Certification: Practicum

Practical Experience: Completing a Montessori teacher training program is not enough to become a Montessori teacher. You also need to gain practical experience by working in a Montessori classroom. This can be done through an internship or apprenticeship program. This experience will give you a better understanding of the Montessori method and how it is applied in a real-world setting. To apply for Montessori certification an individual must have completed 1200 hours of practicum study. Working 40 hours per week in a Montessori classroom would take 30 weeks to clock 1200 hours. So, you’re looking at a school-year long practicum. The good news is that internships are paid positions. The average salary for a Montessori student teacher is currently (2023) approximately $3,000.00 US /month.

Left Frame: Light-skinned forearms and hands are visible cupping a burlap bag that is tied near the top with a little jute twine bow. On the bag is a black US dollar sign. The background consists of natural wood probably a picnic table.
The good news is that internships are paid positions.

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Montessori Certification: Assessment

The final step in becoming a Montessori teacher is to pass an assessment. This assessment is usually administered by a Montessori teacher training center or school. It will test your knowledge of the Montessori method, your ability to implement it in a classroom setting, and your understanding of child development.

In addition to these steps, it's important to note that Montessori certification varies by country. Some countries have their own Montessori certification bodies, while others rely on international organizations. So it's essential to check the specific requirements of your country, state, or province to ensure that you meet the necessary qualifications.

Generic Scrabble tiles also known as pieces of wood on which black letters have been written to spell the word assessment. There are 10 natural wood squares one letter on each square from left to right A-s-s-e-s-m-e-n-t. The AA is uppercase all of the other letters are lowercase. The tiles are placed in a straight horizontal line across the center of the frame against a wooden plank that is much darker than the squares. That dark plank is a center plank with two other planks above and below it visible in the frame.
The assessment will test your knowledge of the Montessori method, your ability to implement it in a classroom setting, and your understanding of child development.

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Becoming a Montessori teacher requires specialized training and certification. The process of getting Montessori certified involves completing a Montessori teacher training program, gaining practical experience in a Montessori classroom, and passing an assessment. Being able to guide young scholars in their pursuit of knowledge makes all of the work worth it!

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