“Can we run?!” asked the students hopefully.
“Yes, you can run,” Ms. Nixon, head of the Mountain Laurel Montessori School replied as the students took off across the field. We were on our way to the river to admire the new wildflowers recently planted by students from Page County High School.
The 4th-6th grade students spent the morning learning about geology, the history of the White House, water quality and quantity and soils. We enjoyed lunch under the maple trees in the side yard, thankful of the beautiful spring day without rain.
The kids were remarkably attentive and interested in everything we talked about, demonstrating their impressive knowledge of watersheds and earth science. They were genuinely interested in learning about the farm and, when asked questions as a group, many hands enthusiastically shot up, the students eager to share their knowledge and experiences.
The Mountain Laurel website explains that ‘a Montessori education is designed to assist children in their task of self-construction as they grow from infancy to adulthood. This approach to life and education is founded upon the principles discovered by Dr. Maria Montessori and complement the developmental characteristics of the human being.’
We continued along the river path to The Grove where the students stuffed their pockets with special rocks gathered from the bank of the Shenandoah, collecting samples of the ancient Appalachians mountains and taking home momentos of their day at the farm.