Teacher Certification


The training of the teacher who is to help life is something far more than the learning of ideas.

It includes the training of character; it is a preparation of the spirit.

~Dr. Maria Montessori

Program Description

Part 1: The Academic Course

Through 260 hours of lectures, demonstrations, discussions, and supervised practice, students learn how to prepare a Montessori educational environment for children ages 2 1/2 through 6 and how to support their individual development. Students receive curriculum manual illustrations, lesson outlines, and material-making masters. Written submissions and a written exam help students learn and remember Montessori principles.



Part 2: The Practicum

The practicum consisting of a minimum of 400 hours of teaching practice and observation helps students gain experience and develop skill in putting the Montessori approach and principles into practice. Students present their completed curriculum manuals and teacher-made lessons materials at an oral/practical certification exam.





CaspariMontessori-12Anita Wolberd, certified Montessori master teacher and CMI’s co-founder and director, holds Montessori certifications from the Pan American Montessori Society, a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University, a master’s degree in Montessori education from St. Catherine University, and certification in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. She has established schools in Montana and Idaho, provides consultation to schools and parents, and continues to teach at the early childhood level. She has served on various educational boards, including a term as chair of the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE). Anita collaborated closely for over ten years with Dr. Elisabeth Caspari in the operation of their school and training center. She faithfully carries on the Caspari mission of transmitting the authentic message of Maria Montessori to today’s generation of teachers.

1981Caspari-bluedressDr. Elisabeth Caspari (1899-2002), direct student of Maria Montessori and co-founder of Caspari Montessori Institute, dedicated her life to the education of young children and to preparing and inspiring their teachers. Before she met Dr. Montessori, she directed a school of music in Switzerland. After their meeting, and for fifty years, she actively carried the Montessori message and method to adults and children around the US and Mexico, leaving an unforgettable legacy with her motto “Love is the key.” In 1992, Dr. Caspari received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education.

The CMI Difference

  • CMI was co-founded by Dr. Elisabeth Caspari, a direct student of Dr. Maria Montessori who took the Montessori message to heart and passed it on to CMI’s director with faithful authenticity during a decade of close collaboration and co-teaching.
  • At CMI you will learn from CMI’s director, Anita Wolberd, a certified Montessori master teacher trainer who has been successfully preparing teachers for twenty-five years and who continues to work with young children. She brings experience that is extensive and fresh, therefore providing time-tested guidance as well as insights into today’s educational challenges.
  •  CMI adult learners are together for all classes and develop a strong supportive relationship that lasts beyond the period of training.  
  • Practical life materials are uniquely beautiful and sequenced to challenge each child, from the beginner to the most advanced.
  • The sensorial avenue of curriculum places a particular emphasis on music with the famous Montessori bells.
  • For language development, you will be given master copies of many of the materials so you can make your own set of language materials.
  • In the math avenue, you will receive the latest teaching from Dr. Montessori that was given to her students near the end of her career.
  • The practicum can be in a suitable location near you and does not require full time student teaching.
  • The CMI experience is rigorous, joyful, and life changing. 

Graduates say…

It has been a challenging, amazing, and wonderful year. I appreciate your mentorship and am thankful to have your guidance and support.   ~Kate

Thank you for making a world of difference in my life and in the lives of so many others.   ~Victoria

I am eternally grateful for the gift of knowledge you have passed along to me.   ~Laura

Thank you so much for all your wisdom, support and guidance over the course of this year, and for your joyful, loving presence. ~Nada

Everything you have done has been amazing. I can’t believe how much you have helped each of us grow. ~Lauren

Thank you, thank you for sharing your knowledge and guidance to make this world a better place for our children. ~Jess



The next academic course begins July 5, 2022. 

Registration opens September 5, 2021. Request an application packet by email: casparimontessori@gmail.com. 

The practicum phase begins after completion of the academic course, from September through May. 




Certification Program:

Budget an additional $300 for books and supplies.
Call for information about optional university credit.


Entrance Requirements – Academic Course

Love of children and a desire to help them is the primary qualification of an aspiring Montessori teacher. At the time of entrance, applicants must be eighteen years of age, have a high school diploma or equivalent, and provide evidence of their ability to succeed in university level course work. Applicants need to demonstrate the ability to communicate clearly in written and spoken English and be recommended by three personal references. Although a college degree currently is not required at the early childhood level, it is recommended that students who do not have a bachelor’s degree continue working toward its completion.

Entrance Requirements – Practicum

Students in good standing with CMI who have successfully completed the academic phase and have cleared the appropriate background check are eligible to begin the practicum. It is the student’s responsibility to seek a suitable practicum site and teaching schedule with approval by the CMI director.


For application packet contact CMI.

Accreditation/State Registration

CMI is accredited at the early childhood level by the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE). MACTE is the only Montessori organization recognized by the US Department of Education. Contact information: Rebecca Pelton, Ed.D, President, 420 Park Street, Charlottesville, VA 22901, (434)202-7793, http://macte.org.

CMI is registered with the Idaho State Board of Education as a proprietary school. The State Board of Education does not accredit or endorse any CMI course of study. These courses may not be accepted for transfer into any Idaho public post-secondary institution.