Montessori school opening in Waterloo - Republic-Times | News

Montessori school opening in Waterloo

By on August 9, 2017 at 1:25 pm

Pictured is one of the classrooms inside Foundations Montessori School, located at 726 N. Rogers Street in Waterloo. (Sean McGowan photo)

Though she dreamt for years of providing alternative education to children, Robin Siedle has only recently come to see that dream become a reality.

“For me, it started 10 years ago. As a school teacher, I saw alternatives to teaching young people,” she said. “And I was a first grade teacher that saw children coming into what I thought was restrictive.”

Siedle has 27 years of experience in education.

Her desire to bring a different teaching style into the community gave birth to Foundations Montessori School at 726 N. Rogers Street in Waterloo, which will open for classes Aug. 21. Siedle managed to get the school off the ground with the help of co-owner/director Rachel Kimme.

“I’ve always had a passion from an early age to work with children, and I’d like to pursue my dream in a different, unique way,” Kimme, who has about three years of substitute teaching experience, said.

The guiding principle of a Montessori school is that students learn best when they are allowed to structure learning based on their individual needs. For instance, some students understand and retain concepts better through visual aides, while still others need to learn through listening.

Students in a Montessori school also learn through interacting with their environment. In order to achieve this type of learning, classrooms include sensorial materials.

An example is the commonly used pink tower. The pink tower consists of 10 pink cubes of different sizes, designed to teach children the concept of size. A student is tasked with stacking cubes on top of each other from largest to smallest…>>>

Read the rest of this story in the August 9 issue of the Republic-Times.

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Sean McGowan

Sean is a die-hard Cubs fan, despite the relentless peer pressure coming from the rest of the Republic-Times staff. He and his wife, Jacqui, have been married for two years. Originally from the west suburbs of Chicago, Sean and his wife moved down to Normal to attend Illinois State University and stayed central Illinois residents for the past four years.