About Us

Who We Are

Ithan Montessori opened in 2013. Founder, Tracie Costello had worked in the field of early childhood education for over 15 years at the time and wanted to expand into the Montessori space.

The main goals were to establish a program that provided an organic Montessori curriculum and create a warm, welcoming environment for children, parents and teachers alike.

Almost ten years later, Ithan Montessori has not only achieved but exceeded these goals while developing lasting roots in our lovely Radnor community.

In addition to a traditional Montessori curriculum, STEM, French, Music and Physical Education are incorporated into our weekly schedule. We are licensed by the Department of Human Services adhering to the rules and regulations governing early learning centers in Pennsylvania.

An education at Ithan Montessori will give your child:

  1. the opportunity to work at their own pace in a non-competitive environment;
  2. the opportunity to follow their natural curiosity;
  3. systematic steps in learning, from the concrete to the abstract; and
  4. an environment of stability, respect, order and beauty.
Child playing with toy dumptruck of sand

Meet Ithan Montessori Director Melanie McGinn

Melanie McGinn was appointed Director in 2013 and was instrumental providing Montessori expertise and experience in the areas of curriculum, materials, classroom arrangement, and staff training. Melanie was born and raised on the east coast of England, moving to the United States in 1987. Melanie in her own words:

“I fell in love with the Montessori Philosophy when my oldest of three children attended a Montessori program. I received my Montessori Primary Certification in 2003 and Birth to Three Certification in 2018. When I was offered the opportunity to help start Ithan Montessori in 2013 it was a dream come true!

“Together with Tracie, we created an authentic Montessori environment in the heart of the Main Line.

“My setting is simple…structured yet with a natural and homey feel to it. Nature is found everywhere inside and out as the seasons change. This really sets the tone for how the children feel while they are here. In the classrooms, learning activities are presented in the traditional way, we observe each student to see what interests them most. We then build a customized curriculum per child that stimulates their learning path.

“In this prepared environment, we are careful to pay attention to see if a child is struggling or hesitant in the classroom. There is always another way to initiate interest depending on the personality and abilities of each student. With every level of learning, I am always encouraging my staff and myself to be a step ahead of the child’s next success.”

Our Mission

Our mission is to protect and nurture each individual child, teaching respect and care for each other and the environment.

Our Values

Ithan Montessori is an advocate and caretaker of the young child—providing well-rounded educational, cultural and developmental stimuli in a comfortable, cherishing atmosphere. Trained guides at Ithan Montessori strive to create a unique learning environment where children are encouraged to respect themselves, others and the environment.

Child drawing with crayons

Inside the Classroom

Montessori classrooms offer a prepared environment where children are free to respond to their natural tendency to work. A child’s innate passion for learning is encouraged with opportunities to engage in spontaneous, purposeful activities with the guidance of a trained adult.

Through their work, the children develop concentration, joyful self-discipline and progress at their own pace and rhythm, according to their individual capabilities.

"Ithan Montessori School provided an amazing experience for my daughter who attended Primary and Readiness classes over three years. She had so much fun everyday learning, working and playing with her friends and teachers in such a warm and supportive environment. She was extremely well prepared socially and academically when she transitioned to kindergarten in our local public school. We couldn't be happier with our choice of sending her to IMS!"
— Marta
"We loved being a part of this school and so did our children. It was amazing to see our kids being excited to go to school, and they would come home with stories of all the things they did and learned that day. The teachers are all excellent and they make an effort to engage the kids in an individualized way. Summer camp at Ithan was also especially memorable. Our sons are proud alumni of Ithan Montessori, and talk regularly of the fond memories they have of the school."
— Katie & Ethan
"Ithan Montessori is the benchmark for early childhood education. Their commitment to promoting independence, kindness and creating a sense of community are evident daily. The staff are fantastic and fully invested in the children's well-being. Both of our children were fully prepared in every way for elementary school and still talk about Ithan Montessori years after attending."
— Peter
Smiling girl with paint on her face

Ready to Apply?

Learn more about Ithan Montessori.

Learn More