Credits: Heärt Montessori

Vegan Schools Around the World: Raise Vegan Chats With Heärt Montessori

by | May 3, 2019

Cincinnati, Ohio based Heärt Montessori School has been vegan since it was established in Fall 2017. Currently serving ages 3-5 and with plans to extend their program to ages 6-9 next school year, Heärt Montessori School’s class sizes range from 7-14 students. As part of an ongoing series on vegan schools around the globe, Raise Vegan chats with Heärt Montessori School about their vegan ethos, curriculum, founders and program.

Vegan Schools
Credits: Heärt Montessori

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Vegan Schools Around the World: Raise Vegan Chats With Heärt Montessori

Here are the excerpts from the interview.

Can you tell us a bit more about the aspect of veganism in your school’s founding and identity?

Heärt Montessori School: The school has been vegan since it was established. All of the school founders practice a vegan lifestyle and are dedicated to veganism as it relates to compassion for all beings and the earth. One of our founders, a vegan for more than four decades is finally seeing his dream of a vegan Montessori school materialize after thirty years in the making! 

As both founders of the school and parents, we envisioned a kinder, more compassionate world for our children and considered how we might begin to create this reality—the vision started with a school—a holistic educational experience that connects children to the natural world and that is rooted in empathy, compassion, and peace for all beings. 

What are some of the unique programs offered at Heärt Montessori?

Heärt Montessori School: Permaculture/Farm Curriculum starting at age 3 and a themed Summer Camp. Read more curriculum and programs here .

Photo by Heärt Montessori School
Vegan Schools Around the World: Raise Vegan Chats With Heärt Montessori

What sets Heärt Montessori apart?

Heärt Montessori School: At Heärt Montessori we focus on kindness as much as academic performance. We also prioritize empathy and compassion, intertwined with core academics. We educate children in a typical Montessori style, with an emphasis on developing higher self-esteem and high self-acceptance through meditation, mindfulness, yoga, art, and music. Children are learning tools to be kind to themselves and others. 

Now more than ever, the stressor of a fast-passed adult life pervades our children. From bullying to low self-esteem to media saturation, integrating practices like mindfulness and meditation assist children to handle stress and pressure in a healthy way.  By practicing non-harming in daily life, the children develop an intrinsic sense of empathy and compassion, which empowers them to manifest the most exquisite version of themselves.

Why are parents choosing Heärt Montessori?

In Heärt Montessori School’s own words, here are some of the reasons parents are choosing their school!

  • Our teachers are Montessori trained and integrate the teaching of all core academic subjects, not as isolated disciplines, but as part of the whole.
  • We focus on the development of intuition and cultivating empathy and compassion for all beings.
  • We emphasize a child’s role in the universe and how they are able to contribute to their surroundings, both globally and locally, such as through community service.
  • We foster a deeper connection to the natural world through sustainability, permaculture, and direct experiences in nature. We have dedicated a significant portion of the curriculum to time outdoors.
  • We give children the freedom to express themselves and be their most authentic self.
  • We incorporate mindfulness, meditation, yoga postures, and peace education into our academic curriculum to provide children with a holistic education.
  • We honor the unique nature of each child through observation and individualized instruction, nurturing each child’s intrinsic desire to learn.
  • We teach through project-based education and there is no daily homework. We believe that because students spend all day learning in a hands-on and interactive way, their late afternoons and evenings are best spent pursuing personal interests, connecting with family members, and relaxing.
  • We serve healthy, organic, nourishing, and compassionate 100% plant-sourced meals to students and accommodate for any food sensitivities.
  • We foster our partnership with parents through regular communication and collaboration.

Heärt Montessori shares a Sample Seasonal Menu with Raise Vegan

The purpose of Heärt Montessori is to create delectable and nutritious food that satisfies all the senses. Fresh succulent organic fruits and vegetables, as well as other rich quality ingredients, add to the vibrant colors, fragrances, and taste of the food that they prepare for the children. By using organic products, grown locally and grown in organic soil as much as possible, they participate in nurturing the earth and serve children nutrient rich and thus more flavorful foods. Meal times are also an opportunity for children to appreciate where their food comes from, socialize, and even sometimes assist in the kitchen. They work closely with a plant-based registered dietician (RD) for expert advice to ensure that their menu and meal plans are nutrient dense and delicious for even the choosiest of eaters.

Fall

  • Monday: Zucchini Pasta Marinara with Mixed Veggie Meatballs.
  • Tuesday: Nourishing Split Pea Soup topped with fresh herbs and a side of Air Fries.
  • Wednesday: Hearty Peanut Butter and Fruit Sweetened Jelly Sandwich with Chia Seeds and Sliced Apples.
  • Thursday: Build Your Own Hummus Wrap; hummus slathered onto a soft tortilla with a choice of an array of veggies.
  • Friday: Pizza Party! Delicious homemade pizza topped with spinach, basil, tomatoes, peppers, and olives.
Photo by Heärt Montessori School
Vegan Schools Around the World: Raise Vegan Chats With Heärt Montessori

Meals are served with fresh fruit or raw vegetables and an item to accompany them, such as hummus, guacamole, or herbed cashew dip.

Winter

  • Monday: Mashed Cauliflower Potatoes and Gravy with a Roasted Vegetable Medley and Baked Tofu.
  • Tuesday: Creamy Tomato Soup and Grilled Avocado and Cashew Cheeze Sandwich.
  • Wednesday: Mexican Quinoa Casserole; a medley of tomatoes, corn, black beans, and spinach baked with quinoa and topped with avocado and cilantro.
  • Thursday: Artichoke Tetrazzini; artichoke hearts, sautéed mushrooms, quinoa pasta, carrots, and peas baked in a white cream sauce served with garlic bread.
  • Friday: Shepherd’s Pie; hearty vegetables marinated in a delicious broth and topped with mashed potatoes.

Meals are served with fresh fruit or raw vegetables and an item to accompany them, such as hummus, guacamole, or herbed cashew dip.

Spring/Summer

  • Monday: Tofu Salad Sandwich with Tomato and Sprouts served with a Creamy Cucumber Salad Tuesday: Garden Pesto Pasta with Fresh Greens
  • Wednesday: Vegetable Lentil and Kale Soup with a side of Sweet Potato Fries
  • Thursday: Make Your Own Taco Bar with veggies from the garden
  • Friday: Homemade Veggie Burger with Purple Potato Salad

Meals are served with fresh fruit or raw vegetables and an item to accompany them, such as hummus, guacamole, or herbed cashew dip.

Other Menu Item Examples:

Photo by Heärt Montessori School

Soups are a favorite during fall and winter. Some other soups include: minestrone soup, turmeric soup with beans and cauliflower, vegetable soup, tortilla soup, Indian spiced chili with rice, and cashew cheesy potato soup with tempeh bacon

  • DIY, Do It Yourself Sushi
  • Black Bean Quesadillas with Cashew Cream
  • Breakfast for Lunch: Tofu Scramble, Pancakes, and Tempeh Bacon Lentil Loaf with Mashed Potatoes and Gravy
  • Cincinnati Style Chili
  • Beet Burgers with Sweet Potato Air Fries

Snacks

  • Monday: Sprouted Grain Cereal or Gluten Free Granola over Nut Milk
  • Tuesday: Apples and Celery with Peanut Butter and Raisins
  • Wednesday: Sprouted Grain or Gluten Free Bread with Almond Butter and Fruit Spread Thursday: Peel and Slice your own Banana with Applesauce
  • Friday: Avocado Toast Deluxe with Cucumbers, Tomatoes, and Herbs

Other Snack Item Examples:

  • Oatmeal with Dried Fruit Smoothies
  • Fruit Salad
  • Citrus Juicing
  • Mixed nuts
  • Dried fruit
  • Fresh seasonal fruit

Would you like to see more vegan schools emerging globally? Did you like the concept? Comment below.


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