About Kiddies Den Montessori

About Us

Every aspect of the Kiddies Den Montessori in Rathgar is the result of my passion and over 15 years experience working with children. From the beautiful materials to all the extra-curricular fun activities, everything has the purpose to aid your child with their first steps towards becoming a happy, independent learner.

Our "back to basics" holistic approach to child-care and teaching has the child's well-being at heart, respecting all aspects of natural development. The children will have the opportunity to "work" with inviting materials created to inspire them to conduct their own experiences. They will play with natural things like stones, shells, sand, salt or water in lovely bright, spacious rooms decorated with wooden furniture.

We will introduce the children to ecology (through exercises like "care of plants"), recycling (using recycled materials in arts and crafts activities) and healthy eating (providing a healthy, colorful snack). We are looking forward to a year full of love, learning and fun!
Best wishes, Alina.

About the directess

My name is Alina Raducanu and I am originally from Romania. I have lived and worked in Rathgar for over 15 years. I graduated "National College Andrei Saguna" in 1997 in my home town Brasov, with A levels in Maths, English, Chemistry and Romanian Literature after which I continued my education for 2 years studying Forest Engineering at the University of Transylvania to follow my passion for botany and ecology.

Since my arrival in Ireland in 1999, I have had the privilege of working with children and become passionate about child care and child development.

In July 2008 I graduated a Montessori Teaching course at "Portobello Institute" in Dublin and obtained 1st class distinction diploma (FETAC level 6) with an overall mark of 96.68.

I have been running a small Montessori school / play-group in Dartry (LA Fitness) from April 2011 until January 2015 and currently running similar in Ranelagh (Wesley House).

I am also the Mom of an 8 year old, very sociable boy (attends Stratford National School), who provide me with lots of opportunities to observe and spend time with children at home.

As a result of working with numerous families in the area, running the school for over 5 years and all of my son's friends, I have built a great understanding of what children love and also what parents expect from a brilliant school. The new and improved "Kiddies Den" is a blend of all my passion and a result of these observations.

The children will play and learn in a beautiful setting, surrounded as much as possible by natural things and many, many plants. My passion for up-cycling and recycling will be passed on to the children through various arts and crafts activities.

Growing in a culture where eating is related to nature, seasons and variety, I have learned the importance of a "healthy body for a healthy mind", so I will use these principles in the very healthy, colorful and "in season" snack offered to children.

The Montessori method

It is not an easy taste trying to find the right school for your child. There is so much choice out there! Also Montessori is not a registered name so it is possible for anyone to set up a "Montessori" even with no real Montessori Teaching Qualification or even one piece of Montessori material in sight. Even the method is surrounded by misconception. Some people believe it's too structured and rigid, others think that children are allowed to do as they like. Most parents seem to agree that the appropriate age for a child to start a Montessori is from 3 years and not before, as "they are not ready"?!

Really the method is suitable for children of all ages (from 0) and is characterized by an emphasis on independence, freedom within limits and respect for all aspects of a child's natural development(psychological, physical, emotional and social). The idea is to love and respect each child, observe what their interests are and provide them with opportunities that allow them to conduct their own experiences uninterrupted and progress at their own pace. The teacher has to let the child acquire knowledge in a natural way, not by listening to words but through experiences that get all their senses involved.