Copyright © 2000 - 2018 by Montessori School of South Riding

(703) 327-9417 /   /   25152 ElK Lick Road , Chantilly, VA 20152

Courtney Chahine

High Point Class of 2017 | Captain of the Women’s Club Soccer Team, Kappa Delta Sorority member and Peer Mentor to the incoming freshmen

While my early classmates were receiving a traditional education, twenty years ago, my parents enrolled me into a Montessori program that I am forever grateful for. My Montessori education guided me to gather information at my own pace while learning in a hands-on environment. To this day, I can recall ironing, washing dishes, learning how to read, count beads and how to polish silver. My experience helped me to grow into a bright little girl, while learning about real life experiences. A traditional education offers you the opportunity to learn your textbook education, however, Montessori offers you the opportunity to learn experiences applicable to real life. I feel as though my early education helped to form my learning pattern and habits from a very young age. At three, I was being shaped and developed into a well-rounded young girl through my education. I established a hands-on learning method, which I later favored throughout my
education. To this day, I prefer to visualize lessons and explanations in order to grasp information to the best of my ability. My experience gave me a foundation for not only my education, but also my life outside of school. I became accustomed to working towards a goal with a group of people, a tactic applicable to life today. Most importantly, I had the ability to build my independence inside and outside of the classroom. Through my Montessori education, I was given the freedom to pursue answers to my own questions at my own pace. My Montessori education has positively shaped me into the motivated, organized, and quick learner that I am today.

Omar Talaksi

MSSR Class of 2005 | Aerospace Engineering | Virginia Tech Class of 2021

Montessori school will always have a special place in my heart. Unlike many other students,
when I reflect upon my early schooling years, the first things that come to mind are not
multiplication tables, beginner books, or shapes. Instead, I remember things such as the
unbreakable bonds that were formed between students, the amazing teachers that would go to
the furthest of extents to see their students thrive, and a learning environment that only set us
up for success. Even though I was learning more and more every day, the classroom was
arranged in such a way that every activity would put a smile on my face. One thing I will never
forget are the occasional tea parties that we would enjoy together so very much. Not only was
this a unique experience for all, but it subconsciously taught me important life skills, such as
proper table etiquette. When I attended the Montessori school, I never truly thought of it as
“school”. I would wake up every morning excited to get back to my previous day’s work, and
never wanted to leave when it was time to go back home. Only after graduating from this
school did I realize how lucky I was to have such an experience. Even now, as I am writing this
almost thirteen years later, I still use every skill the Montessori school has taught me, and will
never forget just how much of an impact those three seemingly short years had on my life.

Wim Tapley

Singer-Songwriter, Multi-Instrumentalist, and Music Lover

MSSR helped me discover a love for learning that has been a fixture of my education ever since. Given the choice to pursue whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, along with the helpful guidance of my teachers, I was able to dive into the topics that were most interesting to me. Montessori school gave me a learning environment where I regularly felt challenged, and the system of support and love that was put in place made me feel special, accepted, and inspired. Now, as a musician and a songwriter, I can say that I was able to set the groundwork for my passion for music at Montessori school. I wrote some of my first songs in the school, learned about the lives of famous composers and was able to recognize their pieces, and had regular opportunities to perform and be goofy. Instead of “checking boxes” and simply having her students memorize information, Mrs. Carmen and her staff regularly encouraged creativity, and taught students to practice acceptance and compassion, always leading by example. I learned real world skills such as cooking, polishing, and ironing, and I could piece together a map of Europe with the best of them thanks to MSSR. I was also taught to be kind, honest, hardworking, passionate about everything that I do, and open minded towards trying new things. Enrolling me in Montessori School is one of the best decisions that my parents have made for me.

Ali Talaksi

Aerospace Engineering | Georgia Institute of Technology | 2019

My Montessori experience was one that I will be grateful to have for my entire life.  It provided me with the learning fundamentals to be able to not only further my education, learning ability, and intellect, but also provided me with the foundation to build relationships that I know will last a lifetime.  The Montessori style of learning suited me because it allowed me to learn at my own rigor and pace, which is something very unique to find at that age.  Despite being in school, it never felt stressful or arduous.  Being able to have the ability to actually interact with fellow classmates was also something very unique.  However, what I will be forever grateful for is the relationship that I was able to build with my teachers.  Having mentors that you will be able to keep learning from for your entire life is irreplaceable, and I hope that I can provide that same support with the younger generations that come after me.  

Nadia T

MSSR Class of 2006 | Flint Hill High School Class of 2018

My experience in a Montessori classroom was one I'll never forget.  The experiences I had and the first friends I made there will always have a special place in my heart.  As I have gotten older, I have carried the skillsets which I learned at such a young age with me throughout my schooling experience.  The Montessori style of learning taught me that learning is different for everyone, and the amazing teachers are always willing to cater to each student's individual learning style. I always remember Montessori being a place where I was learning without even realizing it.  However, I am most grateful for the lifelong relationships I was able to build in the classroom.  There are few places where teachers and students alike are friendly, caring, and open to new experiences.  I will always be thankful for the amazing relationships and lessons I learned in the Montessori classroom, and I will never forget the impact Montessori had on me at such a young age.

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