News

Ready to Serve With Safety First

As an essential service provider during the pandemic, we know that we have an important role to serve in the community. Families count on us for reliable, quality care and we stand ready to fulfill that need. Even during uncertain times, our first priority is always the safety of students, families, and staff.

We are well-connected in the Montessori community and with organizations that support and serve the childcare industry. We are diligent about staying on top of the latest guidance from local, state, and federal authorities to inform thoughtful decisions and develop best practices for our program.

In response to the pandemic, we collaborated closely as a team and reconfigured our program to promote health and wellness for our students, families, and staff. These accommodations include increased cleaning and sanitation procedures facility-wide, seamless drop off and pick up, reduced class sizes, limited contact between groups, rearrangement of classrooms to encourage social distancing, and much more. You can review these commitments in more detail in our COVID-19 Practices and Procedures.

If you’re not quite ready for on-campus attendance, we are prepared to assist with your child’s growth and development at home with our Remote Learning Program. Connect with trained Montessori guides, participate in online circle time, borrow age-appropriate materials, and more – all for a flat, low monthly rate!

Meaghan’s Fight is Our Fight!

For over ten years, Ms. Meaghan Nichols has been a vibrant and beloved member of our teaching staff.  She spent her first several years in our Pre-Primary program, where she advocated vocally for the addition of a Montessori Infant program.  A few years back, she was instrumental in opening that program! Meaghan led a team of skilled caregivers to visualize the environment and ensure that care and consideration were given to every detail.  Most importantly, she welcomed families with open arms and made sure that every tiny student felt loved as her own.

Just a few short months ago, Meaghan finally became a new mom herself! It was the culmination of a lifelong dream and years of hopeful persistence. We couldn’t imagine a more loving and capable mama, and are beyond grateful that her baby boy is happy and healthy.

Unfortunately, the joy of Meaghan’s past year was clouded by a diagnosis of stage four metastatic melanoma. It’s been a difficult road, but Meaghan has been a constant source of humor and optimism throughout her pregnancy, diagnosis and ongoing treatment. She experienced a significant setback recently, when the rental she was staying in during her medical treatment in Los Angeles caught fire and required her to flee down 22 flights of smoke-filled stairs.

We recently supported Meaghan with the sale of t-shirts, and raised almost $800 for Meaghan, with the help of our community! Meaghan’s sister,  Ms. Katie Marchmonte (Head Teacher in Room B), is collecting pictures of supporters wearing Meaghan’s shirts to buoy her spirits and exemplify the love and support we all feel for her. Don’t forget to upload pics of your t-shirt to our Facebook page so you can be a part of this uplifting project!

Please consider following Meaghan’s journey (or making a direct donation) on the GoFundMe page created for her benefit. Thanks in advance for your care and support!

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Catching Up with TGPM Alumni: Maxi Fujiwara

We would like to introduce you to a special TGPM alumna: Maxi Fujiwara! Maxi attended our program from 2003-2007, before moving out of state with her family.

“My name is Maxi Fujiwara and I’m a nineteen year old college student pursuing an English major at Arizona State University.”

What did going to The Growing Place Montessori feel like?

“Attending TGPM was a new learning experience every day that aggrandized my pursuit for knowledge.”

What did you enjoy about coming to school?

Coming to school wasn’t a chore, it was a fun-filled experience from morning to afternoon. I loved how caring all my teachers and peers were.”

In what ways do you consider yourself to be a well-rounded individual?

“High school and college academics force you to be a punctual and hardworking individual, and without the foundation of TGPM I would not have those traits. I have respect for myself as a student to always try my best and give my best effort. Growing in an environment that fostered my interest for learning prepared me greatly for life.”

What is your opinion of Montessori now that you’ve had experience in other learning environments?

“I truly believe that because I attended TGPM I was far better prepared for life and higher academics than my peers. Going from Montessori to a more rigid learning style that involved sitting in desks for 6+ hours, I can say TGPM fostered my learning far superior than other elementary schools.”

Catching Up with TGPM Alumni : Alexandria Hunter

My name is Alexandria Hunter and I’m a twenty year old college student studying Theatre Arts and Business Management at Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon.

How did you feel about hands on learning?

Montessori education was my foundation, I didn’t know anything else until I was in 7th grade. Hands on learning was my norm, and it wasn’t until I entered a public school halfway through middle school that I realized how effective hands-on learning had been for me. Using materials like golden beads in the Montessori classroom assisted me in building my math skills, especially because I have a hard time visualizing numbers in my head. I needed to see evidence in front of me in order to make connections. I’m also aware that this method doesn’t work for everyone, but I think as a foundation for young minds, it’s helpful in making those connections between what’s in your head and what’s in your hands, especially since what’s in our hands is our main focus when we’re younger.

What is your opinion of Montessori now that you’ve had experience in other learning environments since?

“I’ve attended multiple schools, all with different learning styles: Public, Montessori, Project-Based, and Homeschool. I was exposed to many different approaches to education. I think all of these styles hold their own strengths, but none of them can supply a child with as strong of a foundation as Montessori. Montessori solidifies the essential skills and habits that young minds need in order to grow and fall in love with learning.”