Montessori Spirit also runs a school, knows and uses the materials and we know the investment that they represent. So Montessori Spirit works as a co-operative and, as the biggest European distributor of Nienhuis' products, offers discounted prices because of its bulk purchasing. This is one way to provide you with approved and quality materials at the best price and to help the development of the Montessori educational approach, by supporting all players in the same way.
Thanks to Montessori Spirit, you enjoy an immediate 15% discount on Nienhuis's RRP, which increases to almost 20% with reduced shipping costs, compared to their true value.
The Association Montessori internationale (AMI) was founded by Maria Montessori and her son Mario in 1929. This association brings together and protects Maria Montessori's research work on materials and how to use them, to ensure the complete nature of the educational approach and its proper application. The AMI is responsible for this educational approach and protects, develops and spreads it all over the world, supporting work, organising conferences and more.
A part of the purchase price of any AMI-approved equipment is donated to the AMI to fund its work. It is therefore a strong statement: on the one hand, respecting the ethics of Maria Montessori's work as she wished, but also supporting the active development of this educational approach all over the world.
Of course, above all, these are consistent materials which meet requirements - and which, with the proper training and presentation, fulfil their educational purpose when used by children. That's why you won't find a half pink tower here, for example...
You can add all the items you want to your basket, whether they are available or not.
For each item, we display its availability from Nienhuis. This availability, although reliable, is indicative: we cannot have and display all of Nienhuis' stock in real time. We update these availability dates every week (at the end of the day on Friday, in general).
There are 3 kinds of availability:
The product is normally available from Nienhuis.
No problem, after your order is submitted, prepared and shipped, you should generally receive it within 4 to 5 business days.
An automatic DHL tracking number will be sent to you by email as soon as it is shipped so that you can track the delivery of your order.
Product with a delay
The product is not available immediately from Nienhuis and is scheduled for a specific date.
This date is indicative and is usually reliable. It can still be put back because of manufacturing problems or delays, and can sometimes be brought forward - good news!
The product can still be ordered; it will be sent automatically when it is available from Nienhuis.
If your order includes available and unavailable products: you will immediately receive the available products and the other products will follow soon after, when available - without any additional costs, of course.
Product with no known date
The product is unavailable, it is probably recently out of stock and will need to be manufactured.
With industrial processes, delays can last from a few weeks to several months: other product manufacturing must be shifted to make another product, to check it, to transport it - it takes time.
The product can still be ordered and the first people to order it will be the first to receive it: Nienhuis sometimes orders small quantities to fulfil the oldest orders, while waiting for full stock of a product.
Yes, Montessori Spirit, Nienhuis' leading distributor in Europe, delivers all over the world.
Outside Europe, however, we have to quote for transport costs. These can not be calculated automatically by the site: thousands of references generate hundreds of possibilities and it is best to calculate them as accurately as possible. We never make money on shipping costs.
No, we don't have a bricks and mortar store.
This store would never be in the right place for everyone and, in the end, you would be paying for it in the price of your items. That goes against our desire to provide you with the lowest prices.
Similarly, we've refused all partnerships with big online marketplaces: we don't want to be associated with low-cost copies nor to charge you the 15% commission which they all take.
We are here for educational purposes, we have a school ourselves, and the goal is to bring you the best prices, not to make our swimming pool bigger... We're not a normal retailer in a commercial sense and we're happy about that ;-)
Yes, the site is open to all! That's one of Montessori Spirit's primary roles: providing the same approved and high-quality equipment for all, without distinction and at the best prices.
So a school which opens and buys a lot of materials will pay the same price for its pink tower as an individual who only buys one for his/her child. This system reflects the true value of materials, is fair and inclusive. We are not a furniture retailer which offers 50% off on large orders and makes individuals pay high prices - a doubly punishing system! We are in favour of real savings: everyone pays the same, fair prices for materials, all year round.
Delivery times are variable depending on the country, the time and day of the order, but are generally 4 to 5 working days in Europe.
Everything is sent from Nienhuis in Holland to save time, CO2 and money. Shipments are initially made by DHL for parcels, you automatically receive an email tracking your parcel (check your spam folder, just in case). Depending on the country, closer to home, deliveries may be processed by DHL or DPD.
Some ordered items may not be available, because they are already listed as out of stock or being delayed when you order. In this case, all available items are sent immediately, the remaining items are recorded and will be sent automatically when available.
You should receive another automatic email from DHL.
If you want to track the availability of your missing items, you can consult the indicative dates for each item, mentioned in their product description. We update them every week (at the end of the day on Friday, in general). These dates can be moved back or forward depending on the vagaries of production/supply.
All undelivered products can be cancelled and are refundable.
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