Montessori school in children’s paradise: the creation of a child-centered learning institution
CEBU CITY, Philippines – After graduating in accounting and being successful in the corporate world, her concern and passion for teaching children led her to change course.
Marivic Bathan, founder and president of Children’s Paradise Montessori School (CPMS), said her decision to build the school came after her niece, who was born with cerebral palsy, told her that this child would need help. ‘special education.
So she decided to open a nursery school.
She recalled that it was in 2001 that she took a turn by building CPMS with the money she had saved from her early retirement as an executive at a leading beverage and beverage company. non-alcoholic.
“I also pooled the resources of family and friends, who believed in me, and started opening in 2006,” Bathan said.
According to Bathan, CPMS, which is now in its 13th year, continually had enrollments due to its “unconventional teaching,” inspired by Dr Maria Montessori’s Montessori teaching method.
Bathan said CPMS is a child-centered school, a break from the traditional and mainstream teaching method.
“Here at CPMS, we focus on making the child good, teaching them their senses because we wanted to be ‘child-centered’,” Bathan said.
She said their experiential approach to teaching using materials designed by Montessori for their students set them apart from the rest of the schools.
For example, their kindergarten students, she said, were already proficient in math.
Their 2nd and 3rd graders could already solve algebra while their 6th graders already knew geometry because they had adopted a system comparable to Singapore’s mathematics.
Singapore mathematics is a kind of teaching method used from kindergarten to grade six. It became popular due to Singapore’s consistent ranking in the International Assessment of Achieving Students in Mathematics, which was then called Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS).
The CPMS operates the Montessori program, which is an international program.
She said part of this approach would omit the use of textbooks and opt for the use of reading materials and other references since textbooks would limit a student’s development.
“If ang bata ganahan makat-on pa sa topic na gidiscuss, we encourage them to do research because using textbooks only limits them,” Bathan said.
Bathan also said that students would also be spared from homework, and instead of having periodic exams, everyone would be required to take practice tests to determine their skills and mastery of the subject.
“In class, we integrate our students who have special needs, and we individualize and personalize the teaching, with a ratio of 1 teacher for 15 children,” she added.
With this, Bathan said their teaching staff is mainly composed of Special Education Teachers (SPED), specializing in the Montessori style of teaching.
Bathan herself also holds a Masters in Montessori Education and has had advanced training abroad.
It is the aspiration and plan of the CPMS to eventually send part of its management team abroad for further training and possibly to set up its own Montessori training center in Cebu.
CPMS started with 13 students in 2006 and has grown its population over the years.
Currently, they now have 150 students. CPMS was also rated as the most trusted Montessori school in the Cebu metropolitan area by the Global Management and Excellence Awards (GLOMEA) Council.
Apart from this, CPMS has been recognized for 10 consecutive years since 2010 as Cebu’s Montessori of the Year by the Business Achievement and Recognition Awards (BARA) Council.
Bathan said his passion for children was influenced by his parents and niece, who were the driving force behind the creation of CPMS.
As they are currently expanding, the CPMS will have environmentally friendly and green buildings by 2021 and offer lower secondary school programs.
Looking back, Bathan had indeed started from the roots to building what had truly been a child-friendly school, a dream come true thanks to his perseverance and passion for children.