The programme is inspired by Montessori's theory for young people between 12 and 15 years of age. It addresses the vulnerability of adolescents and advocates a nurturing environment - one where they can be close to nature, breathe fresh air, eat healthy food and be free from the stress of traditional academic study and exams.
Montessori's idea for meeting the particular needs of this age group is a working farm, where the study of subjects are interrelated and emerge from the kind of things they need to do to facilitate their everyday life, such as increasing the production of milk in the cows and building a new chicken coop. Students also learn about money in a very practical hands-on way by running something such as a small kitchen business or guesthouse.
Several of these environments have sprung up all over the world. Students have time and activities to help them explore and express their feelings and they also learn how to take responsibility, by having to look after themselves within a community of other adolescents.
At around 16 years, students move on to a Montessori or other high school to extend their academic study.