New Year Letter for Montessori Teachers

For Immediate Release

Contact: Marcy K. Krever, Chief Communications Officer
Phone: No calls please.

American Montessori Society
116 East 16th Street, New York, NY 10003-2163

December 6, 2017. This article was written by Jane Mack in 1974. It originally appeared in AMS’s The Constructive Triangle, Vol. 1, No. 1. (the precursor to Montessori Life). Jane, who lived 1926 – 2012, was founding teacher of Lexington Montessori School in Lexington, MA (along with several parents) and an LMS headmistress. She was also very active in AMS. We believe the letter is as relevant today as it was when it was written more than 40 years ago. We wish each and every one of you a glorious—and reflective—2018!

As we enter upon a new year, I suggest that you establish a few goals for yourself. By doing so, you will be in a position to measure your programs, and perhaps finish the year a better and more professional person than when you started.

I am going to suggest a few goals that can produce worthwhile results if adhered to. You can certainly think of ones that apply more directly to your own life.

My suggestions are …

  • To take a more positive attitude toward life in general.
  • To develop my creative ability.
  • To set up standards for my work.
  • To contribute to my field of endeavor.
  • To treat each day as a new beginning.
  • To use respect in all my interactions.

Remember that there are two ways to look at any problem. One is negative, and seems to be a popular approach because it offers the path of least resistance. With very little effort, we can turn things around and find a positive way of looking at the problem. Since it is very easy to criticize and so hard for some people to praise, it is small wonder that positive thinking is scarce. The subject of your thought does not change, but your mind does and under your influence can be either optimistic or pessimistic.

Some of us are more creative than others. Creativity breeds positive thinking, optimism, and most of the good things in life. I find that letting one’s imagination run free, engaging in fantasy now and again, and talking with children about imaginary things—all help to develop creative activity. Why be afraid to think like a child again? In that childlike curiosity are many things that one would never think of if one lets the mind grow old.

I hope that you will choose of the listed goals or one of your own, and do something about making it work during the coming year. Life around you will be more enjoyable if you follow through, and—by the year’s end, you many have something truly exciting or interesting to share with the rest of us. Good luck.

A happy, peaceful, and productive 1974 to all of you.

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