Hello. My name is Andrea O’Halloran, and I am the Principal of Montessori Materials. As I write this in 2015, I have been a Montessorian for 34 years, starting first as a parent of three boys enjoying the 3-6 and 6-12 communities. Next I was administrator at my sons’ Montessori school followed by:
- years acting as Administrator for New South Wales State and national Montessori bodies (the NSWMA and MAA);
- serving as a Director on several Montessori boards including Australian Montessori Teacher Education Foundation, the Australian Montessori teacher training organisation; and
- serving as a Director on AAAA Events Limited, the Organizing Committee of AMI’s 2005 Montessori Congress in Sydney.
In 2001, I received my AMI 0-3 Diploma from the first AMI Assistants to Infancy Course given in Australia. I began my teaching career in Montessori, helping to establish a Nido (infants) and Toddler (18 months to 3 years) class at Forestville Montessori School in northern Sydney. With another AMI colleague, I gave an Introduction to Montessori course to teachers in Bhutan 2004.
I have also worked as a mentor for 0-3 directors in the ACT and Queensland, lectured to parents and teachers in New South Wales and interstate, and assisted parents with practical advice in home consultations.
My 13 years of 0-3 experience working with children, parents and staff as a Montessori professional were an absolute pleasure and rich in memorable experiences. I have recently retired from hands-on classroom and advisory work to pursue my own business, Montessori Materials, and to spend more time with my family. It’s lovely how things come full circle – from being a mother of children in Montessori, to a Montessori professional working with others’ children, and now as a grandmother of a new generation of Montessori children!