Alanna Gallo of Play. Learn. Thrive. discusses her discovery of Montessori and helping other parents wade through the concept of play, Montessori philosophy and realistic home environments.
What is your professional background? I am a former public school teacher with a Master’s in Education–I worked in the classroom teaching 9th-grade English for 10 years.
How did you discover Montessori? While preparing to have my first baby I read about Dr. Montessori’s educational philosophy and it just made so much sense. I changed my whole outlook on how children learn and what it is to teach children.
What is a favorite Montessori principle or quote? That children thrive in a prepared environment. What surrounds them matters. The materials, the toys, and the beauty of it all matters.
How do you help families understand play? I emphasize that play is their child’s work–that play helps children develop all the social, emotional, and cognitive skills they need to succeed later in life. Those foundational skills are what drive all other learning.
You’ve traveled all over the world. What do we have in common, and not so in common, with other countries when it comes to children and families? Children all over the world are the same. Seeing my children naturally fall into playing with other children despite a language barrier showed me what I already knew inside–that play and engaging in the world around them is a child’s natural instinct.
What are some concepts that your clients learn from you? How to simplify their child’s play spaces and shift their mindset towards a more Montessori-aligned way of raising children.
Tell us about the opportunity you have for a televised program. ‘The Power of Play’ is a TV show series in development that will help change the lives of so many families. We have had some interest from high-level networks, but they are often looking for a bigger asset package for proof of concept. When we fund the Kickstarter we will develop a full-pilot episode to share and promote the concept of the show.
What do you aim for your show to accomplish? ‘The Power of Play’ will increase awareness around how children actually learn, and encourage parents all over to simplify their spaces and create an environment that helps children thrive.
What can people do to support your efforts? Supporters can visit our Kickstarter page and pledge their support. Any little bit will get us closer to bringing this show to life!
Learn more about Alanna Gallo at PlayLearnThrive.com.