Latest News & Posts

Thu Oct 17

Yule Log Ceremony Holds Wishes for the World

Written by Ginny McCollum

It’s been a tradition for decades: on the half-day before Winter Break, our entire school gathers to share in a very special ceremony. Preparation begins early in December, with each class in the Children’s House, Elementary, and Upper Schools crafting a special performance. When the day comes, some classes sing; others may recite a group poem or perform a skit. Occasionally, we’re even treated to a hippo playing a kazoo. (It’s a Middle School thing.)... Read More

Fri Aug 30

Perspectives: From Heartwood to Yale, via Madagascar

Written by Colin Peterson

Colin Peterson (’05) is the son of beloved Children’s House teacher Ms. Becki. He attended Heartwood from 1997 to 2005. In 2015, he obtained a B.S. in Environmental Science from UNC Chapel Hill. After graduation, he served with Americorps in Montana, protecting National Forests and Wilderness Areas. From 2016 to 2019, he lived and worked in Madagascar with the US Peace Corps, implementing projects focusing on public health and biodiversity conservation. In August 2019, he... Read More

Fri Mar 22

Life, the Universe, and Everything: A Cosmic Education

Written by Bridget Dickerson

Faculty Focus is an ongoing series, featuring articles written by Heartwood’s own panel of experts. This installment comes from Lower Elementary lead Bridget Dickerson. In their book Children of the Universe, Montessorians Michael and D’Neil Duffy sum up the purpose of Cosmic Education neatly: “This six-year Montessori experience gives elementary students opportunities to appreciate their roots in the universe, to sense their place in its context, and to embrace the role this defines for their... Read More

Thu Feb 28

Montessori Kids in “Real Life”

Written by Ginny McCollum

We hear it pretty often. “Montessori’s great and all, but what about when they get out in the real world?” Sometimes, it’s a concern about transitioning to the desks and workbooks of a traditional classroom. Other times, the person is worrying about how their child will perform in college or the workplace, or just wondering how an unplugged education fits into a digital world. Either way, there’s plenty of evidence that Montessori kids can do... Read More

Thu Feb 7

Faculty Focus: Teaching Montessori Internationally

Written by Ginny McCollum

Faculty Focus is an ongoing series, featuring articles written by Heartwood’s own panel of experts. This installment comes from Upper School Director Ray McClure. If you were to walk into a traditional classroom in different countries throughout the world, you would certainly see many differences. A traditional classroom in the United States looks very different from one in China or Poland, because culture, national standards and measurements of educational success guide what is being done... Read More

Wed Jan 9

Q&A: Can an older child transition from traditional school to Montessori?

Written by Ginny McCollum

For families considering a move from traditional school to Montessori, the question of transition is key. How will the child adapt to the materials, culture, and expectations of this environment? Can an older student make the leap, or does Montessori have to be experienced “from the ground up”? Recently, this question was posed to our Upper School Director Missy McClure through the Center for Guided Montessori Studies blog. You can find her answer below, as... Read More

Tue Jan 8

Faculty Focus: Montessori in Secondary Education

Written by Ginny McCollum

Faculty Focus is an ongoing series, featuring articles written by Heartwood’s own panel of experts. This installment comes from Upper School Director Missy McClure. There’s a flow in Montessori schools that begins in the Toddler House and continues through the all of the levels, in all of the classrooms — Dr. Montessori’s steadfast belief that “The child is both a hope and a promise for mankind.” (Education and Peace). In the Upper School, we continue... Read More

Tue Jan 8

Faculty Focus: Montessori Music Education

Written by Ginny McCollum

Faculty Focus is an ongoing series, featuring articles written by Heartwood’s own panel of experts. This installment comes from Children’s House assistant Lynda Dawson. Every human group loves music. Each creates its own music, just as it does its own language. Each group responds to its own music by bodily movements and accompanies it with words. None of the animals have music and dancing, but the whole of mankind, in all its parts of the... Read More

Tue Jan 8

Faculty Focus: Standardized Testing and Montessori

Written by Ginny McCollum

Faculty Focus is an ongoing series, featuring articles written by Heartwood’s own panel of experts. This installment comes from Lower Elementary lead Bridget Dickerson. Many people ask why a Montessori school would administer a standardized test, since we don’t usually test our students. It’s a North Carolina state requirement to administer a nationally standardized achievement test each year, but testing is only one small part of our answer to the big question, “How is the... Read More

Tue Apr 17

Nurturing Nature in a Digital Age

Written by Ginny McCollum

“There must be provision for the child to have contact with nature; to understand and appreciate the order, the harmony and the beauty in nature,” Maria Montessori wrote in The Secret of Childhood. “Speeding up the march of progress and at the same time being in touch with Nature create a difficult social problem.” Eighty years later, we face this problem every time we choose between sunshine and screen time. Even outdoors, it can take some... Read More

Early Release Today (September 5)

Due to the effects of Hurricane Dorian, all students must be picked up by 3:30pm. Contact the office at (919) 465-2113 with questions.