Eva Cheng – From Banking to Montessori and a New Way of Life

Eva Cheng, AMI Diploma 3-6 and 0-3 graduate says:

“I had my first career in Investment Banking in London and Hong Kong, advising some of the biggest companies in the world on their IPOs and Mergers and Acquisitions.  I left after six years to look for ways that I can help people more directly and personally.  It was shortly after my son was born that I discovered Montessori from the parenting books I read.  I decided to do an AMI Assistants Certificate 3-6 course and from there went on to study the AMI Diploma 3-6 and the AMI Diploma 0-3.

I took the two-year daytime course for my AMI Diploma 3-6 teacher training. I really enjoyed and benefitted from interacting with our trainers with their variety of personalities and experiences and learnt so much from every one of them. They were role models to me on how to lead an incredibly busy life, but also to be completely present in the moment when they were with us.  I felt personal and comfortable with the trainers, and that I could approach them with any specific or general questions. We also immediately formed close friendships within our class group and with students on other courses and this has lasted well beyond the training.

During my AMI Diploma 3-6 training, I had teaching practices in two schools and got job offers from both schools after graduation; one a long term position and one as a temporary cover before my long term position started. I already knew the people and the environment for both places, so it was a very natural transition. The teaching practice placements offered hands-on teaching experience and built my confidence working with children and colleagues. I felt very supported – the teachers would take time to talk to me, answer questions and provide guidance.  I have now left my teaching position because the commute turns out to be too tiring for me unfortunately, but I remain close to the people in the school.  I’m currently looking for working opportunities nearer home, but also looking for other ways to use what I have received in Montessori training to contribute and help others.  I’m setting up a website to source and sell Montessori products; I also always enjoy sharing what I learnt with other parents and those thinking of training.

There are lots of opportunities that spring from the training and being in the Montessori world.  Training gave me a new set of skills but also transformed my way of thinking and life in many ways.  The idea of a “prepared environment”, “role modelling” and the experience of “flow / concentration” are all so applicable to how I live my everyday life and interact with other people. I am constantly in reflection, learning and experimenting. The training helps me to think more critically and started a transformation of who I am, how I see the world and how I interact with others. I am so grateful for the experience and all the adults and children that have helped me with such patience, tolerance, love and faith.

While I was doing my training, my son joined the Maria Montessori School’s Children’s House in Hampstead.  The training really helped me understand what my son was working on and we had fun comparing notes. Recently my son entered Elementary and I completed the AMI Assistants Certificate 6-12. I am really grateful that there’s a wealth of knowledge and experience that I can turn to at the Maria Montessori Institute during every stage of my parenting and learning.”