Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Education, Montessori

First Advisor

Alisha Brandon


Montessori Early Childhood


This study explores how gardening affects students’ focus and attention in a primary Montessori classroom. Over the course of a four-week intervention, the teacher-researcher provided eleven students with mini-gardening lessons, followed by time to use purposeful movement in the garden. When students returned to the classroom to assume their Montessori work activities, the researcher collected data by recording the time it took the students to get on task, whether or not students were focused, and which unfocused behaviors were exhibited. A pre-and post-attitude scale was completed by the students to determine prior experiences and attitudes towards gardening. The study revealed that during the intervention, time to get on task decreased and ability to focus increased. Students who were habitually inattentive and not focused continued this pattern, but did show improvement over the life of the study. Further research is needed to support these findings; post-intervention data could be collected to determine long-term impacts, and a higher number of students should be involved in the intervention for generalization purposes. Keywords: Attention, Focus, Montessori, Nature Deficit, School Gardening, M