Curious about how Montessori Middle School is different from traditional methods of schooling? Come to the Open House for the MRM Middle School! Interested families are also welcome to directly contact the school to speak with the Head of School or Director of Admissions. Contact information is available at the bottom of every web page.

Date: Thursday, Feb 1, 2018
Time: 6:30–8:00 p.m.
Location: MRM Middle School, 1025 London Rd

To learn more about our Middle School Guide, Jessica Mohn-Johnson, please click here to visit our People page.

Above: What happens when a group of strangers is thrown together into a room and expected go to school with each other for a year? These MRM Middle Schoolers, and their teacher, share their candid thoughts in the above video.

the Many Rivers Montessori Vision:

What if, here in Duluth, your middle school student attended a school where:

  • Students are engaged and challenged, where they are truly excited about learning?

  • Students steadily grow into their full and authentic selves, supported by a caring school community?

  • This school community is well integrated within our unique local community?

  • The curriculum regularly calls upon the students to explore national and global perspectives on issues?

The Middle School at Many Rivers Montessori is just such a school. Building on Many Rivers’ existing program, the Middle School provides a high-quality, authentic Montessori educational environment. This Montessori environment supports students in reaching their full potential through independence, academic preparation and social-emotional development. We invite you to come and observe our school in action!


Above: Students share four very different reasons for choosing to come to the MRM Middle School in the above video.

The Middle School Years

In writing about the middle school years, Maria Montessori called for students to engage in both hands-on and intellectual work. This would allow students to understand, “by practical experience, that these two kinds [of work] complete each other and are equally essential to a civilized existence.”

This recognition of the value of intellectual as well as hands-on work lies at the heart of the MRM Middle School. Along with the school’s core academic program, students have broad-based opportunities for both school service and community service, interactions with the natural world, entrepreneurship, and other meaningful community involvement.


Intellectual Work: Academics

Through extended work times that support individualization, collaboration, and interdisciplinary study students gain the necessary academic foundation required for success in high school in the following areas:

  • Mathematics

  • Literature and Writing

  • History and Geography

  • Life Science, Earth Science and Physical Science

  • Foreign Language

  • Critical Thinking & Problem-Solving Skills

  • Art & Music

Above: MRM Middle School students discuss their favorite subject or project so far this year.

Hands-On Work: Entrepreneurship & Service

Montessori middle school programs incorporate service programs such as working in a soup kitchen, farming as a community venture, and apprenticeships or mentorships in the workplace. These activities meet the adolescent need for meaning in school through an age-appropriate advancement of the “goings-out” of the Elementary years. Hands-on activities generally have a particular emphasis on economic enterprise. Examples may include:

  • Running an actual business, known as a “microeconomy” in the Montessori literature

  • A week-long mentorship experience in a local business

  • Community Service

  • School Service

Above: Introducing Confluence, the MRM Middle School's pottery business.

Personal Growth

MRM’s Middle School program is grounded in the Montessori value of supporting the growth and development of the whole child. Supportive and respectful social relationships, fostered through the development of skills such as those below, lie at the heart of a learning environment that will enable each student to thrive.

  • Resilience

  • Conflict Resolution

  • Interpersonal Communication Skills

  • Public Speaking

  • Community Awareness


The World as Campus

We are exploring partnerships with a variety of community arts, education and social service organizations in the Twin Ports. These partnerships will provide our students with meaningful service learning and volunteer opportunities in our community, as well as new avenues for artistic and creative expression.

Our fall Middle School Retreat and extended Spring Studies Trip are well-designed outings that are integrated into the curriculum. These trips support personal development and foster a deep connection to the natural world. The MRM Elementary program provides a variety of Minnesota experiences. With the Middle School, we will set our sights broader, and are considering the desert Southwest, Puget Sound and the Colorado Rocky Mountains as potential Spring Trip options.


January Term

The month of January is a special time for the MRM Seventh and Eighth Graders. During the two-week J-term, the curriculum takes on a single focus. It might entail mounting a theatrical work, carrying out in-depth science and engineering projects, or just about anything at all! Whatever is chosen, the J-term culminates in a public presentation for students to share what they have learned.


Co-Curricular and Extracurricular Options

During the adolescent years, engaging after-school opportunities become increasingly important to students. Our after-school program is based on the interests of the student body. We partner with local organizations as appropriate, and emphasize exposure instead of specialization. We are exploring the following options:

  • Running Club

  • Mountain Biking Club

  • Nordic and Downhill Skiing

  • Curling Team

  • Fencing

  • Chess Club

  • Rock Climbing

  • French Club

  • Knitting and Sewing

  • Red Cross Babysitter Training

  • Bowling

  • Golf

  • Debate

  • Art

  • Music



To learn more about our unique program and whether it would be a good fit for your middle schooler, please attend our MIDDLE SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE at our London Rd Campus on May 23, 2017 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.!

School visits are available for interested applicants. Please contact our Director of Admissions at 218.382.7852 to find out more.


More Videos

1. Why a Montessori Middle School in Duluth? Our Head of School Mark Niedermier explains the rationale behind the MRM Middle School in this short 2.5-minute video:


2. Montessori Middle School alumna Maddie Keeler, who is Lester Primary's Guide, reflects on how Montessori Middle School solidified her self-confidence, and shares her hopes for our inaugural group of middle schoolers.


3. Lussi S., a rising 7th Grader at MRM, shares why she chose to continue in the MRM Middle School, and what she's looking forward to.


4. MRM's founding Middle School Guide, Jessica Mohn-Johnsen, shares what she loves about teaching middle schoolers, and her vision for the MRM middle school program.



The Mission of Many Rivers Montessori

Many Rivers Montessori is a learning environment that fosters independent, academically prepared, and socially responsible citizens who will be lifelong learners and problem solvers. We provide an ideal learning environment that focuses on the whole child during each stage of development from toddlerhood through adolescence — the benefits of which last a lifetime.


Nondiscrimination Statement as to Students

Many Rivers Montessori values diversity in every aspect of the school community. It is the policy of MRM not to discriminate in violation of the law on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, sexual orientation or disability in the administration of its admissions policies, educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic programs and other school-related programs.