A different kind of school

Published 10:24 am Tuesday, February 26, 2013

By DALE BRAKHAGE / Community Columnist

Imagine a peaceful place, a beautiful place. Imagine children coming there to learn. Interesting, interactive lessons teach those children how to think, how to work independently, how to be organized, and how to respect themselves and others.

That describes the Joseph S. Bruno Montessori Academy on U.S. 119 in Indian Springs Village.

Founded in 1982 by Bruno, this school started with only four preschool children in one small building.

Montessori preschool teacher Jennifer Pope and students learning by doing. (Contributed)

Montessori preschool teacher Jennifer Pope and students learning by doing. (Contributed)

In the last 30 years, the school has grown to more than 200 students ranging in ages from 2 years old through 8th grade.

Today, students attend classes, spread throughout a half dozen buildings on a beautiful wooded 25 acre campus.

When you visit the school, you will be asked to enter through the Head of School’s office and receive a visitor’s badge. The first adult face you will see there is that of the friendly school secretary, Joan Myers. “This is a great school,” she said. “It is a quiet, peaceful place.”

A Montessori school is not a school for only gifted children. All types of children attend. What makes a Montessori school different? It is how subjects are presented.

The Montessori philosophy allows children to progress at their own pace with hands-on materials, individual lessons and small group lessons.

Their educational practices are built around the theories of Jean Piaget and Howard Gardner, as well as Maria Montessori.

The school’s mission is to provide the opportunity for all students to grow to their fullest potential as teachers stress the holistic development of each child.

The Joseph S. Bruno Montessori Academy is located by Our Lady of the Valley Catholic Church. The school’s entrance is on Timber Hill Road directly across the street from the New Hope Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

The school’s sign on U.S. 119 sums up the school effectively. It describes the Joseph S. Bruno Montessori Academy as a “foundation for a lifetime of learning.” If you would like to learn more about the school or schedule a tour, please visit its website: JBMA.org. Or if you prefer, just give Miss Joan a call at 995-8709.

Dale Brakhage writes a weekly column about Indian Springs and its residents. You can reach him at dale@dalebrakhage.com.