Montessori School of Ojai


Sammy Keyes‐Levine

“For first grade through eighth grade, I attended Montessori School of Ojai which has a very unique program. Montessori school curricula emphasize independence, curiosity, and freedom. I was able to go at my own pace to an extent, and was able to make choices on my
curriculum. The most important skill I gained from Montessori was my ability to work
independently. Due to all of the classes at Montessori being self‐directed, I had to be
motivated to do my work. That skill has stayed with me.

From a young age I have been involved in leadership and team building. In middle school, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to participate in the Montessori Model United Nations program. This program was a year‐long class where I learned about the United Nations and peace building initiatives in Sierra Leon and Burundi. For the entire year, I practiced writing essays, speech writing, researching information, and debating. At the end of the year, I was able to go to New York and the United Nations and meet with students representing over three hundred Montessori Schools from all over the world. While there, I put all the skills to use and that I have been honing through the year to use in an activity where my classmates and I were grouped and assigned a country. Together we wrote, sponsored, debated and voted on resolutions for various problems based on the country we were representing and based on our assigned country’s values. This experience not only enhanced all of the skills I had learned but showed me other perspectives and different ways to solve problems.

I still frequently help out and volunteer at my old middle school (Montessori School of  Ojai.)”

Sammy Keyes‐Levine
College Essay