Barefoot in Suburbia

Homeschooling & Special Needs, Inspired by the Montessori Way

As promised….a review of Karen Tyler’s training course, plus a HUGE giveaway!! November 8, 2010

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I frequently get questions about where I get my ideas for homeschooling our two younger children using the Montessori Method. One of the main places is from my Montessori albums created by Karen Tyler. For those in the Montessori homeschool loop, the name is very familiar. Karen has created several really awesome albums (everything from astronomy to zoology!) and she has an online training course. I am almost finished with my online training course–I chose the 12 month fast track option (which isn’t too fast or overwhelming…I liked the pace, and I’m a very busy mom of 3 kids, a grad student, and a homeschooler. LOL!)

I found her course and albums to be a wonderful thing for someone like me…someone who didn’t go to school to be a Montessori teacher, but really really wanted to learn the Montessori methodology. It won’t make you fully prepared to teach a class by yourself, but her course has given me nearly everything I need to use Montessori in a homeschool setting from ages 2-6. (I really hope she comes up with a course for 6-9 year olds once Monkey gets to that age!!). Included in the cost of the course was every album: practical life, sensorial, math, language, astronomy, physical science, ecology, geography, zoology, and botany. That right there made it a tremendous deal! But in addition, I also received weekly lectures, pictures of how work should be done, a ton of 3 part cards, tracking forms, and tons of help when I had questions! I really wouldn’t have even known where to begin if it weren’t for this course. (And Karen really understands homeschoolers…she also knows we don’t have tens of thousands of dollars to fully equip our homeschool rooms–a lot of the work is easily adapted to the home setting and can be made by hand!)

I strongly encourage anyone who wants to know more about Montessori to sign up for Karen’s course…you can take the regular track (24 months) or the Fast Track (which is 12 months long and includes all of the information in the regular track). Here is some information from Karen’s introduction to the course:

The beauty of this Pre-Primary course (2-6 years old) is that you can access the information from a yahoo group site any time during the day or night to download the presentations/lessons to add to your manual/album. You don’t need special software in order to participate. There isn’t a time limit or assignments that are due so there isn’t any pressure.

The entire course runs for 24 months and covers 12 albums.* you do not commit to taking the full 24
months. You may take 1 month or all 24 months or anything in between! I cover the 4 major subject areas
(Practical Life, Sensorial, Language and Mathematics) within the first 8 months.

 I do have an option called FAST TRACK. This is the same as the 24 month course only it is
completed within 12 months.
Once a week I add pages to the album we are currently working on. We begin with Practical Life, Sensorial, Language, Mathematics, Physical Science, Ecology, Geology, Botany, Zoology, Geography, History and Astronomy.

All of the albums are written for the 2-6 year old age group and are included in the course. The albums are complete with step by step presentations. For example, the Practical Life Album has 346 pages of lessons and dozens of pictures you can copy in our on-line photo album! Each album comes with its own set of Student Tracking Forms which make it easy for you to chart the progress of each child. Along with this email, I am attaching a Syllabus, Table of Contents from many of the Albums, and a free section from the Botany Album and Zoology Album (includes a free set of nomenclature cards).

During this course, I address what it means to follow in the footsteps of Maria Montessori. I guide each of you as you discover and continue to grow into this “peaceful” way of living. We will be studying topics such as:
Historical Introduction to Maria Montessori
The Montessori Method – Book Study (free e-book used on-line)
Montessori Philosophy
The Absorbent Mind
Development of Imagination and Creativity
Development of the Intelligence and Will
Differences between Traditional and Montessori Schools
Classroom Management
Children’s Behavior
Emotional Growth
Freedom, Natural Laws, Order
Natural and Logical Consequences
Physical Growth of a Child
Power to Obey
Responsibility and Self Discipline
Sensitive Periods

Below is a little more detail on the cost for the course:
 If you paid for the entire course at $10 per month for 24 months it would come to a total of $240.
 If you choose to pay for the entire course at $30 for each of the 4 month terms, it would come to a total of $180.
 If you choose to pay for the entire course on December 1st, the total comes to $150.00.
 If you are taking the FAST TRACK course (same course only completed in 12 months), then you pay $20 per month – or – $60 for each of the 4 month terms with a total of $180 – or – $150 if paid for in full by December 1st.

If you want more information, email Karen at (and tell her I sent you!)

And now that you’ve made it through my entire post….GIVEAWAY time!!! I am thrilled to announce that Karen Tyler has generously donated a free “seat” in her FAST TRACK online class PLUS a complete set of albums to one of my readers! What an awesome deal!!


1st entry: Comment here and tell me why you want to learn more about Montessori

2nd entry: Subscribe to my blog and then comment and let me know you’ve done so

3rd entry: Blog about this giveaway, and then comment here with the link to your post (I love finding new blogs to follow!) If your blog is private, just say you blogged about it in a private blog.

This contest is NOT limited to United States residents. Karen has students from all over the world! (The albums are in English though, so a working knowledge of the English language would be helpful. 🙂 )

The giveaway ends at 11:59 PM EST on Saturday, November 13, 2010. Winner will be drawn randomly from and I will notify the winner via email on November 14, 2010.

Good luck!!!

***If you like what you read on Barefoot in Suburbia, please consider voting for us in the 2010 Homeschool Blog Awards! We are nominated in the category of Best NEW Homeschool Blog!


40 Responses to “As promised….a review of Karen Tyler’s training course, plus a HUGE giveaway!!”

  1. Erica Says:

    And I follow you in Google Reader!

  2. Erica Says:

    Ally, this is Erica from websisters. I started reading your blog a couple of weeks ago, and you’ve gotten me pretty interested in the Montessori method. I’m not planning to homeschool long-term (but don’t plans always change?), but I am starting to think about how to involve my 2 14-month-old girls in play that encourages learning before they start school or preschool. Montessori seems a great way to do that.

  3. Kelly Says:

    I would love to have all the information to help my one year old become a content and happy baby! We love the Montessori method.

  4. Lori Says:

    Subscription Complete 🙂

  5. Lori Says:

    I, like you, am a Montessori enthusiast. Actually, I like to refer to myself as a Montessori adventurist. I resigned from my full time career in Interior Design in April 2010 to stay at home with my children and start my own business. I currently homeschool my 2 sons (20 months and 4 years) using Montessori Methods. Everything I’ve learned has been from Maria Montessori’s books or from my son’s previous Montessori teacher. I’m always craving to learn more. I’m glad I found you through the Homeschool Blog Awards. I’m looking forward to swapping ideas with you. My Montessori Homeschool blog is

    Thank you for the opportunity and I’m crossing my fingers. 🙂

  6. Amy Fields Says:

    I would love a chance to win this. I am a mom to a three year old we adopted with Shaken Baby Syndrome. He is my miracle and I thank God daily for him. I will be subscribing to your blog for new ideas. Thanks!!!

  7. Amanda Williams Says:

    I just subscribed to your blog, thanks for your wonderful posts!

  8. Amanda Williams Says:

    I NEED this class!
    My hubby is unemployed and we have 4 kids, seven and under whom we homeschool.
    I also provide free childcare for my sister’s kiddos, she is a single mama. They are young as well, 2 and 4 years old.
    I would LOVE to win this. I wish I could afford the class, but it is not the time for us to add any “extras” to our expenses! Pick me, pick me!

    Amanda 🙂

  9. Lizze Says:

    I subscribed to your blog by email

  10. Lizze Says:

    I would love to learn more about Montessori – my son is almost 18 months and I am starting to do some ‘tot’ school’ kind of activities, but I would like more training in the hands-on learning, natural learning that I see in Montessori schools.

  11. Melissa Says:

    I follow your blog!

  12. Maria Says:

    I am a follower already of your blog…and I love it!

  13. Maria Says:

    Thanks for this great opportunity…I have a 2 years old daughter wich I am trying to start homeschooling with the Montessori method. We love it so far!

  14. Rasa Says:

    I am subscribed to your blog and am very interested in learning more about Montessori base education. i plan on homeschooling and have already started “tot schooling” my 18 month old son and would love to have more direction in the form of more holistic form of learning. i am really impressed by the Montessori style of learning that emphasizes Learning as an exciting process of discovery, leading to concentration, motivation, self-discipline, and a love of learning. fingers crossed that I win!

  15. Tracy Says:

    I subscribe to your blog!

  16. Tracy Says:

    I have heard wonderful things about Montessori, and would love to learn more about it so I can implement it with my two young children that I am currently homeschooling for preschool.

  17. Melissa Says:

    I am a childcare provider in Minnesota and I have been using my own version of Montessori method with my children for the past couple years. I would love to get some real Montessori training!

  18. Henriettae Says:

    I subscribe to your blog. 🙂

  19. Henriettae Says:

    I want to learn more about Montessori because I want to give my child the best possible start in life, and Montessori seems to be a good way of doing that. However, I’m not sure – since I don’t know much about it – so this give away is perfect! 🙂

  20. Deirdre Says:

    I have suscribed to your email updates.

  21. Deirdre Says:

    Hi there! I found your blog searching “Montessori Busy Board” and am tickled pink that I did! Even if I don’t win this contest, I already feel like a winner by finding all the fabulous ideas you post 🙂 My little girl is just a month younger than Bitty Bug, and I am hoping to give her meaningful learning experiences as she grows, hence why I am interested in teaching her (and any future children we may be blessed with) the Montessori method.

    I am very, very, very new to the Montessori method, but I already love how it has such a hands-on approach to learning, rather than focusing on rote memorization skills. I am so excited that this contest is open to international readers, because while we do have Montessori training schools in Canada, they are difficult to access for people of modest means (tuition is $6,000.00), not to mention the fact that it can be problematic for Mamas to be physically present on a campus when we have little ones to care for. This course seems wonderful, and I love the fact that it is offered online! So thank you for sharing 🙂

  22. Jaime Says:

    I have two daughters and I would LOVE to learn more about Montessori and to gain more confidence in homeschooling them (they are almost 4 and almost 2, so it won’t be long before it becomes “official!”)! Thank you for doing this giveaway!! 🙂

  23. Mamayearwood Says:

    I’m the Mama to two two year olds, one adopted, and a one year old. We plan on homeschooling while they are young…I’m an ECE teacher & feel comfy teaching up to 4-5th grade. Some Montessori training would be awesome!

  24. Kelly Says:

    I subscribed to your blog.

  25. Kelly Says:

    I have a four year old and I would love to have some help homeschooling him the Montessori way.

  26. Amie Says:

    I always wanted to do a Blog but just haven’t taken the time to figure it out yet. Always busy around here with all the little ones. If I had a blog I would definitely write about yours, but for now, I will be sharing it with my friends and my sister.

  27. Amie Says:

    I am officially subscribed! Thank you 🙂

  28. Amie Says:

    I am a proud mama to 8 beautiful children (ages 18-1), and I have spent the last 2 months reading books on various homeschooling methods because what we were doing just wasn’t working for us. Since discovering the Montessori Method, I have been so excited to bring this into our home so that our family can experience such a wonderful thing. I have been talking with Karen about her course and I would love the opportunity to invest in this, but this would be a blessing to our family to be able to actually win it!
    I have really enjoyed your blog and seeing the pictures of all the work you are doing with your children. I am going to be visiting a lot to learn all I can.
    Thank you 🙂

  29. allison Says:

    i subscribed to your blog! thank you!

  30. allison Says:

    i would love this! I am trying to figure out how to pay for the course now, as we speak, but winning a seat would be a huge help for our tight budget.
    thanks for having this give away

  31. Danae Says:

    I just found your blog & subscribed via google reader. I just wanted to comment on the course & albums by Karen-I’m currently a Fast Trak student and I highly recommend it! Karen is very knowledgeable, helpful, & her albums are full (along with easy to follow). I have learned a lot since starting her course & I look forward to continuing my growth.

  32. Kate Says:

    My second entry, because I’ve been following you for months via Google Reader. 🙂

  33. Kate Says:

    Hello! I have been interested in Montessori since learning my twin cousins were enrolled in a Montessori school when I was a child. I would feel quite thrilled to win this!

  34. dony Says:

    thanks for hosting this giveaway.. i love to learn more abt montessori as i plan to do some homeschooling with my lil girl.

  35. dony Says:

    I subscribe to ur posts via email.

  36. Leslie Says:

    I am following your wonderful blog in Google Reader!

  37. Leslie Says:

    Thanks for the giveaway! I would love to learn more about the Montessori method to help me with my work running a Montessori based Christian formation program.

  38. Vanessa Says:

    I am a follower in Google Reader.

  39. Vanessa Says:

    There are no Montessori schools or training available in my country.

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