Montessori Education

Maria Montessori developed her approach based on important principles that make a Montessori school. The principles that will be discussed throughout this paper will help you to understand the principles that are practiced and developed for each classroom. Model early childhood program is an exemplary approach to early childhood education that serves as a guide, (Morrison S. G. P 142). Montessori Program would best service the interest of children and their families. This program has basic principles that are design to bring the naturalization of child development, and to help the child better through out his/her life.

Because of her success with these children, she was asked to start a school for children in a housing project in Rome, which opened on January 6, 1907, and which she called “Casa dei Bambini” or Children’s House. Children’s House was a child care center in an apartment building in the poor neighborhood of Rome. She was focused on teaching the students ways to develop their own skills at a pace they set, which was a principle Montessori called “spontaneous selfdevelopment”. A wide variety of special equipment of increasing complexity is used to help direct the interests of the child and hasten development.

When a child is ready to learn new and more difficult tasks, the teacher guides the child’s first endeavors in order to avoid wasted effort and the learning of wrong habits; otherwise the child learns alone. It has been reported that the Montessori method of teaching has enabled children to learn to read and write much more quickly and with greater facility than has otherwise been possible. The Montessori Method of teaching concentrates on quality rather than quantity. The success of this school sparked the opening of many more, and a worldwide interest in Montessori’s methods of education.

The principle I would like to start the paper out would be the prepared environment. By having a prepared environment this allow the child to learn and develop self-discipline as well as getting in a routine that is best for the child to get used to for their life and how to be dependent. The teacher is supposed to guide the student in the direction but this method allows the children to learn the importance of structure and to a degree dependant. There are all different ages that are in these groups and by doing it this way the children will gain knowledgeable information from older children.

It seems that younger children learn easier and faster off of older peers, so that is why it was so special doing it this way, this also prepares the children for future challenges and schooling as they get older. The Approaches to Early childhood Education by Roopnarine and Johnson (2005) explains children’s responsibility by stating, “There is a strong emphasis on the development of individual responsibility. For example, children return materials to their place after use, the classroom is cleaned and maintained…and they participate in the development of classroom rules” (p 366).

This teaches the children selfsufficient which will be a big part of their life. The absorbent of the mind was the next idea about how the children should be educated. This principle showed the spontaneous and the drive of the inner child. At the occurring of this process the Montessori began to divide the children into two, the unconscious stage and the conscious stage. At birth to three years of age, Montessori said the children were in an unconscious stage (Roopnarine and Johnson, 2005, p. 369).

Here the children “…are absorbing from the environment that surrounds them”. An infant hears a multitude of environmental sounds but is naturally and unconsciously cued in to sound of the human voice. Gradually, without conscious effort by the child, the child absorbs the sounds and rhythms of his or her native language, as well as its vocabulary, semantics and syntax”. The conscious stage happens right after the unconscious stage and goes to six years of age. The child now has “…a growing ability to organize and classify information, experiences and concepts”.

By separating them from these ages it was able to make sure that we wasn’t trying to teach a six month old something that a ten year old was doing. To start with, Montessori stated, “the child…is a constant inquirer who ‘absorbs his environment, takes everything from it, and incorporates it in himself”. Montessori viewed different parts of the environment as contributing to the overall development of the child. The parts of the environment include freedom, structure and order, reality and nature, beauty and atmosphere.

Freedom was seen as “… the natural thrust of the child [that develops] independence…” (p. 371). In addition, children have free choice to pick their activity, pick their materials and pick if they want to work as an individual or with a group, when a child is able to pick it makes them feel like they thought of that and that they are in some what control it is always better for a child to have an option instead of someone telling them that this is what they have to do. Structure and order unfold as the children develop their ideal environment.

Reality and nature focused on the materials that were used in a Montessori classroom; “…the material placed in a child’s hands should be of authentic quality and should tangibly represent the real world”. Beauty and atmosphere created a sense of harmony where the environment needs to be clean, attractive, and well cared for. Learning materials were mentioned before, within reality and nature, in addition the materials were seen as, “… preparing the child both directly and indirectly for subsequent learning”.

In the last part of the environment, development of the community life, Maria Montessori saw socialization as a key element. Maria method for the children learning through play is able to help the child bring together all the elements of life as they experience it. The secret to helping young children thrive is to keep the spirit of creativity and playful learning alive and active, the children does not want to do the same thing over and over they want something fun, something that they can laugh and play with.

It a person always makes it so hard and no fun then the child will be more resistant to learning it. We as adults, children natural imitate us, for some that is good but for other that is not. For example my 2 year old daughter Anyssa, she imitate me when I am sitting out side smoking a cigarette, or when I am talking on the phone she will do and say as I do. So what I have to do is watch after her and try to hide when I am smoking I do not want my child growing up smoking. So at every stage in a child’s life we are teaching them something weather we think we are or not.

Another principle would be human development. Human development is often not slow and steady; acquisitions seem to arrive suddenly, almost overnight, and with explosive impact. Such learning explosions are the sudden outward manifestation of a long process of internal growth. For example, the explosion of spoken language around two years of age is the result of many months of inner preparation and mental development. Human development was viewed as a process form birth to maturity. Babies are born to learn, they are remarkable learning instruments.

These stages represent six years of life as well it introduces the views of the Montessori way. The first period of life is very importance. From birth to age six the child is seen as “constructing him/herself”. Children’s brain development and their ability to learn throughout life rely on the interplay between natures and nurture. What happen to children early in life have a long-lasting influence on how they develop and learn? The human brain is quite “plastic”; it has the ability to change in response to different kinds of experiences and environments.

An enriched environment influences brain development. This process is called the “constructive rhythm of life”. Maria Montessori developed her approach based on important principles that make a Montessori school. The principles that will be discussed throughout this paper will help you to understand the principles that are practiced and developed for each classroom. Model early childhood program is an exemplary approach to early childhood education that serves as a guide. I believe the Montessori Program would best service the interest of children and their families.

This program has basic principles that are design to bring the naturalization of child development. To understand Montessori Education, one must first acknowledge and under Maria’s philosophy about children and education. By incorporating this as a learning tool in the early years, I believe this would further advance them with reading and writing and learning new things while children there age or older are not quite that advance as the child that was taught this method of learning. Since her death an interest in Dr. Montessori’s methods have continued to spread throughout the world.

Her message to those who emulated her was always to turn one’s attention to the child, to “follow the child”. It is because of this basic tenet, and the observation guidelines left by her, that Dr. Montessori’s ideas will never become obsolete. Many people, hearing of the high academic level reached by students in this system of education, miss the point and think that Montessori math manipulative (as an example) is all there is to the Montessori method. It is easy to acquire materials and to take short courses to learn to use them, but the real value of Montessori takes long and thorough training for the adult.

The potential of the child is not just mental, but is revealed only when the complete “Montessori method” is understood and followed. The child’s choice, practical work, care of others and the environment, and above all the high levels of concentration reached when work is respected and not interrupted, reveal a human being that is superior not only academically, but emotionally and spiritually, a child who cares deeply about other people and the world, and who works to discover a unique and individual way to contribute.

This is the essence of real “Montessori” work today. Reference Morrison. G. S Early childhood Education Today. Pearson Education Inc. 2009 Roopnarine . J and Johnson . J (Eds). Approaches to Early Childhood Education New Jersey: Pearson Education Inc. 2005 Seldin. T and Epstein. P The Montessori Way, The Montessori Foundation 2003

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