In 1994, a unique partnership was formed between The South Bend Center for the Homeless and The Montessori Academy at Edison Lakes. Because of this partnership, a unique early childhood program now serves children at the Center by integrating Montessori philosophy, methodology, and materials with the special needs and gifts of homeless children ages 3 to 6.
The result has been remarkable.
Children who come through the door of this special classroom have experienced the extremes of human existence: hunger, poverty, abuse, homelessness, and neglect. For many, this classroom serves as the backdrop for their first experience with the realization that they can work to meet their own needs:
with the limits and self-discipline that make society thrive,
with the respect and value of being a contributing member of our classroom community,
with the sense of some small measure of order in their young lives,
- and with the freedom of choice.
This classroom exists, in part, to help break the cycle of homelessness. The experience shared within its walls are vital to that process.
If you would like to learn more about MAEL’s Montessori classroom at The Center for the Homeless, feel free to contact us.