About Us

Emma RattiganFrom the Principal

Since beginning my training as a Montessori guide in my late teens I have been passionate about the fascinating ways in which young children grow and learn. The Montessori method resonated with me immediately as this common sense approach takes into account the interests and learning styles of each individual whilst guiding children’s development within a peaceful cooperative community.

I have been fortunate enough to observe children in many parts of the world and truly see the value that Montessori’s philosophy of Education for Peace can bring them. Montessori called her approach ‘Cosmic Education’, meaning an education that encompasses all the wonders of the universe given to the children through story, manipulative learning materials, imaginative exploration and real experiences. The world presented thus inspires joyful, meaningful, constructive activity and a desire to learn that builds on the child’s innate drives to develop.

It is not change itself that poses challenge but how we learn to cope with change. Life in the 21st century is fast paced and children need a plethora of skills to allow them to adapt as they grow. What Montessori observed a century ago is still true today…we can not rush the development of children’s minds. I believe this is even more important in the technologically, information rich present day where children are buffeted by so many adult stimuli. Treated as small adults; raised as consumers; targeted by advertising. Childhoods are being eroded. ‘Nature deficit disorder’ has become common place, too many children are confined indoors their explorations of the world narrowed to images on screens.

Our school gives children real time to develop and to enjoy childhood unrushed. We work hard to cultivate our children’s sense of awe and wonder, providing real experiences at a gentle pace. Children have time to watch, listen, build confidence and try new things. Learning is sequential and adapted to suit each individual and we celebrate the many differences that make up our diverse community. Technologies and research tools are introduced gradually as children are ready to explore their wider environment and all aspects of daily life are considered important. The joy a toddler experiences when we give them the chance to dress themselves is valued as much as an older child learning how to use an encyclopaedia for research. Joyful, enthusiastic children are at the heart of all that we do and we have a deep appreciation of the life lessons the children teach us every day.

I look forward to welcoming you to our school, the children are happy to show you around.

Emma Rattigan

EMAS Founder and Principal