There are several essential components found in every Montessori classroom:
Early childhood and adolescent classrooms are set up in three year spans of 3-6 year olds, 6-9 year olds, and 9-12 year olds.
Uninterrupted work cycles
Typically, children are provided with a 3 hour span of time to work with Montessori materials and receive new lessons without transitioning to other activities.
Guided choice of work
Children experience sensitive periods in which they are more attune to specific learning. The teacher tries to match appropriate materials and lessons with these sensitive periods in order for learning to be internalized.
Hands-on manipulation of materials is the primary approach to guiding children from a concrete understanding of skills to the application of abstract concepts. Materials are designed to be an integral part of investigation and discovery. Many are designed to provide a student with a control-of-error in self-checking work.
The classroom is ordered and designed so that children understand the progression and sequence to learning new concepts in the various subject areas. Classroom materials are on accessible shelves so students my use them as needed. Each classroom is suited to the developmental needs of its students. Artwork, natural lighting, soft colors, uncluttered work spaces
Freedom of movement
Children are able to determine where and with whom they chose to work. Often children choose to work independently on the floor at rugs, at tables with a small group of students, or alone at desks or other work areas. Children are free to take care of their own physical needs, such as eating a snack during the work cycle or relieving themselves, without needing to obtain permission from the teacher.