The Montessori Children's House is located in the ground-floor quarters of the John Ross condominium building, across the street from Elizabeth Caruthers Park, adjacent to the Portland Streetcar line. We are also a block from the Willamette River Greenway, which features abundant wildlife, views of river activity, and the Riverway pedestrian trail.
The South Waterfront has been designed and built as a model of sustainability. It has attracted a diverse group of residents seeking community in an urban setting, including young families renting apartments, condominium owners, seniors in a new residential center, and a wide range of artistic, cultural, and scientific activities and organizations. We have been thrilled with the community's response to the Montessori school, including volunteer help and other relationships between the school and its neighbors.
In addition to the specially prepared environments within the school, we make abundant use of the outdoors. Children venture outdoors on all but a few of the stormiest days. We use the park directly across from our front door, take short walks to the river bank to observe wildlife and river traffic and play on the grassy banks, take walks to observe construction in the neighborhood (a fascinating thing for the children), and participate in beautification of our indoor and outdoor environments. Attractive man-made spaces at the John Ross and adjacent buildings utilize running rainwater and other natural features to create inviting courtyards for exploration and picnics.
The South Waterfront Community Gardens are a block from Montessori Children's House. Long and low raised beds were built especially for our children's use, thanks to the foresight of community residents. Gardening and direct contact with the earth offer much to children, even the very youngest. Small groups of children (with adult supervision) visit their garden frequently.
We are enthusiastic about our relation to the community in which we're located, and we look forward to opportunities to partner with neighborhood volunteers and organizations in the development of this children's community.