“The child is endowed with unknown powers which can guide us to a radiant future. If what we really want is a new world, then education must take as it’s aim, with development of these hidden possibilities.”
– Dr. Maria Montessori
Maria Montessori (1870-1952) has left with us the belief that every child is an individual learner who should be encouraged to work at his/her own pace in which they initiate themselves. Since children are our future, educating them is therefore a way to create better communities within society.
Dr. Montessori’s innovative ideas have now become a wonderful approach to educating our young with success. Her simple methodologies have subsequently been applied effectively to children and are quite popular globally. These fundamentals include:
- Children learn better when they are given the opportunity to choose and discover in their
- Children effortlessly soak in everything within their culture and environment.
- There must be respectful, stimulating, nurturing and meaningful direction and guidance during the “absorbent mind stage” (birth-6yrs).
- Children learn best through all their senses – touch, seeing, smelling, tasting and exploring – not just by simply listening.
- Children have a choice; work alone or with other children in a group setting.
- Children learn from other children.
The Montessori method encourages the developoment of a child’s physical, intellectual and spiritual potential to the fullest. ‘Choices’ are given in a prepared environment. Children learn at their own speed according to their own capabilities. The pace, structure and material are all made available in such a way that young people will enjoy. Learning is constant in an encouraging, yet non competitive environment.
The Directress-Resource Teacher is trained to teach respect and show positive values by serving as a role model to the children. The lessons are presented to the whole class, then the teacher helps direct the children on activities they have chosen. Lessons are presented to the individual child and other children may participate if they are interested. This way the specific needs of the individual child can be addressed to that child’s individual level of interest and understanding. The child does not become frustrated because they are not forced to sit through something they are not ready for.