Google founder Larry Page was quoted to have attributed his success to his training when he went to Montessori. He said, “… I think [our success] was part of that training, not following rules and orders and being self-motivated, questioning what’s going on in the world, doing things a little bit different.”
As we dive in to learn more about the Montessori method, we will discover more about what Page was implying.
Parents, teachers, and experts constantly question educational practices, whether they are tried-and-true or novel, to mainly help children receive the education that best prepares them for success. Therefore, it is essential to carefully examine education with a strict eye on methods, philosophies, and techniques.
We’ll pay close attention to the Montessori method and its five guiding principles in this blog.
The Development of Montessori Education
Before delving into the main topic, it is paramount that we discuss the history and development of the Montessori method.
Maria Montessori, who began her professional life as a physician, created the Montessori method of education. Through her work with disadvantaged children, she transitioned from medicine to education. She utilized her training as a scientist to observe how children learn and then applied this knowledge to create a more effective method of educating children, with astounding results.
In 1907, Dr. Maria Montessori opened her first Casa Dei Bambini, or “Children’s House,” for pre-school-aged children. The Montessori method emphasizes independence, freedom within limits, and a child’s natural psychological and social growth.
Within a year of implementing her new method of instruction, many of her students could read, write, and perform elementary math.
News of her success spread throughout Europe, and the Montessori Method, as it became known, took off internationally.
The Five Principles of Montessori Method
1. Respect for the Child
The central tenet of the entire Montessori approach is respect for the child. Respect for children is demonstrated by refraining from breaking up their focus. Giving students the freedom to make decisions, complete tasks independently, and acquire knowledge independently is another way to demonstrate respect.
In addition, teachers must learn to observe without passing judgment and set an example of respect for all students and peaceful conflict resolution.
2. The Absorbent Mind
The foundation of Montessori education is that kids learn new things all the time just by living. So, first, children constantly learn about their surroundings through their senses. Then, because they are thinking beings, they make sense of it.
3. Sensitive Periods
According to the Montessori educational philosophy, children are more prepared to learn specific skills at particular times. These are referred to as sensitive periods and only last for as long as the child needs to learn the skills. Each child experiences these periods differently in terms of timing and order. Observing their students, Montessori teachers must spot their students’ vulnerable times and give them the resources they need to thrive.
4. The Prepared Setting
Based on the Montessori approach, kids learn best in a setting that has been set up so they can take care of themselves. The learning environment should always be child-centered and support children’s freedom to explore any materials they choose. Teachers should set up the learning environment by providing kids with experiences and materials systematically and independently.
5. Auto Education
Auto education, also called self-education, is the idea that kids can teach themselves. In the Montessori method, this is one of the most crucial concepts. Montessori teachers give children the space, the ideas, the direction, and the support they need to learn on their own.
Is Montessori Education Right for Your Child?
Now that you’ve had a quick rundown of the five Montessori principles, you’re probably wondering how to apply them and whether the Montessori method is suitable for your child.
To adhere to the Montessori method, you must be comfortable with a little structure and a lot of “independent study.” Children must be allowed to progress at their own pace and given adequate time to improve holistically.
Choosing the best educational approach for your child’s personality and needs is an individual preference. Knowing your child is the primary and most crucial step in deciding whether a Montessori school is the best fit for your child.
For more of this valuable educational information, visit the School Success Makers.