Montessori- Inspired Memory Care

Poydras Home is committed to offering customized memory support to our resident population. We introduced a Montessori-inspired, specialized memory support program in 2013 that allows each resident to retain their unique voice. The “I’m Still Here”™ Montessori Program, originating from the Hearthstone Institute in Boston, MA, allows each resident to direct meaningful choices in the ways they spend their days. Creative techniques allow us to engage all residents while preserving their independence through mutually beneficial social interactions.

Roman Alokhin

Photo by Roman Alokhin

We have a dedicated employee, well versed in the implementation of the “I’m Still Here”™ program. Additionally, our entire staff receives annual, professional training to both maintain and expand the program for all of our residents. Poydras Home is the only certified “I’m Still Here”™ Center of Excellence in the South. This holistic endeavor allows our passionately supportive staff to unlock the inner thoughts of those affected by Alzheimer’s and other dementias so that they can better continue to connect to loved ones and one another.

This quality care approach includes regular visits by a licensed art therapist to guide both individual and collaborative, highly expressive, hands-on, art projects by our nursing care residents and day program participants in Poydras Home’s Rose Room and Hunter House. These sensory projects are then displayed for all to explore.

Poydras Home Montessori Program Art Therapy cropped photo 2The scope of the Montessori Program was further expanded in the summer of 2015 to include regular, ongoing outings to the New Orleans Museum of Art as the initial participants in Artful Minds at NOMA, an experimental art enrichment pilot program designed to enhance communication and connections through visual art. Through Artful Minds, our memory care residents were nurtured as they experienced a pre-selected variety of art installations, led by specially trained docents who coaxed expressive reactions and verbalizations from even the most reticent of residents.

The Montessori methodology has significantly broadened the depth of our memory care residents’ interactions and connections to the world around them. We will continue to implement the program in innovative ways to the betterment of our whole community.