The recent bloom of published research from Montessori environments has been inspiring. Following the groundbreaking work of Angeline Lillard, we have the launch of the Journal of Montessori Research. On top of this, there are a growing number of graduate students undertaking Montessori-related research projects for their theses and dissertations. This is all most excellent news for the Montessori movement!
If you’d like to take a peek at what is already out there, go to scholar.google.org and search for Montessori. If you exclude patents and citations, you’ll get over 150,000 results! If you further refine your search to just what’s published in the past 4 years, you’ll still get nearly 17,000 results! Get a nice cup of tea and browse through the titles you see to get a sense of what is happening. Click through and read some abstracts. Then, start to think about what you might study in your own environment.
Here are the big picture steps involved in conducting your own action research:
- Identify your focus/interest
- “Muck about” to see what’s already known
- Define your research question
- Get Approval/Support
- Design your study/data collection/assessment tools
- Conduct the study/collect data
- Organize your results
- Analyze your findings
- Adjust and start again or share/repeat
Read on for details!