As one of the oldest and largest recognized Montessori schools in North America, Alcuin School in Dallas, TX, is nationally known for its exemplary programs and facilities. Alcuin School—an independent, non-sectarian, co-educational day school for students aged 18 months through twelfth grade—provides an environment where each student's innate passion for learning is encouraged through opportunities to engage in thought-provoking, purposeful activities with trained educators. Through their work, students develop academic competency, concentration, responsibility, and self-discipline.
Founded in 1964, Alcuin School serves a diverse community of approximately 575 students, and is guided by the Montessori philosophy as well as both the International Baccalaureate Middle Years (I.B.M.Y.P.) and Diploma Programmes (I.B.D.P.). This combination of these pedagogical approaches and academic standards offers an atmosphere in which students can grow in intellectual excellence as well as personal responsibility.
Families interested in Alcuin School are encouraged to attend a Prospective Parent Meeting to learn more about our community. These meetings are scheduled regularly throughout the year and include information about our philosophy of education, demonstration lessons, a tour of the school, and classroom observations.
Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Recognition
International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme
International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme
Independent Schools Association of the Southwest (ISAS)
National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
Texas Dept. of Family & Protective Services (TDFPS)
Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE)
Enrollment Management Association (EMA)
North American Montessori Teacher's Association (NAMTA)
Montessori Institute of Texas (MINT)
Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD)
Technology Education Consortium (TEC)
American Camping Association (Affiliate)
Educational Records Bureau (ERB)
Independent Athletic Association (IAA)
Independent Schools Management (ISM)
Texas Private School Accreditation Commission (TEPSAC)
Association of International Educators (NAFSA)
Texas Association of Non-Public Schools (TANS)
Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS)
The first female physician in Italy, Maria Montessori was born in Chiaravalle, in 1870. As a child, she attended and graduated from two engineering schools, cultivating a lifelong love of mathematics. By the age of 25, she had become the first woman to graduate from the University of Rome Medical School.
Her observations of children as a medical student and her later work with mentally challenged children fed her curiosity about the educational processes of her time. A true scientist, she observed, studied, questioned, and began to create materials for children based on their development. One hundred years later, these materials and the Montessori method continue to provide an innovative and unique educational system.
Guided by her discovery that children teach themselves, Dr. Montessori designed a “prepared environment” in which children can freely choose from a number of developmentally appropriate activities. A century later, Montessori education is found all over the world, spanning ages from birth to adolescence.
Children are grouped in mixed ages and abilities in three to six year spans: 0-3, 3-6, 6-9, 9-12, MYP. There is constant interaction, problem solving, collaboration, and socialization. Children are challenged according to their capacities and interests.
Environments are arranged according to a subject area, and children are always free to move around the room instead of staying at desks. At any one time in a day, all subjects—math, language arts, science, history, geography, art, music—are being studied at all levels.
Montessori materials are designed to physically demonstrate particular skills. Each material is carefully constructed to be both beautiful and accurate. Children are shown how to use materials with respect and care, always returning them to their designated place and making sure they are prepared for the next student’s use.
In order for students to progress to the next material, the previous material must be completed. Each material and each lesson contain an assessment. In addition, teachers keep daily notes and continue to update progress reports throughout the school year. Reports are sent home two to three times per year depending on a student’s grade level.
Research studies show that Montessori children are well prepared for later life academically, socially, and emotionally. In addition to scoring well on standardized tests, Montessori children are ranked above average on such criteria as following directions, turning in work on time, listening attentively, using basic skills, showing responsibility, asking thought-provoking questions, showing enthusiasm for learning, and adapting to new situations.
Education of character is considered equally with academic education, children learning to take care of themselves, their environment, each other—cooking, cleaning, building, gardening, moving gracefully, speaking politely, being considerate and helpful, and doing social work in the community.
Montessori education inherently builds a group of life skills alongside academic experiences. These skills include self-efficacy, leadership, flexibility, cooperation, independent thought, and tolerance. Academic concepts are built with materials that physically demonstrate each concept by exploring them in kinesthetic, visual, and auditory ways. Alcuin School graduates enter the next stage of their education with a sense of ownership for their educational process; a faith in their capacity to find the answers to problems; a willingness to work with others; and a determination to succeed.
Montessori students are often referred to as thinking outside the box. According to a recent article in the Harvard Business School Journal, “The most innovative entrepreneurs were very lucky to have been raised in an atmosphere where inquisitiveness was encouraged. A number of the innovative entrepreneurs went to Montessori schools, where they learned to follow their curiosity."