In Montessori learning, the key concepts are respect and recognizing the child’s genius. According to this philosophy, letting a child choose how they want to learn, encouraging them to learn by doing (not reading), and helping them develop their interests is essential to accelerating their education.
Thanks to Maria Montessori’s work in 1896, it has since become an international movement that helps children develop all over the world. Although there are many aspects to the method, the main focus is on a child’s mental, physical, intellectual, and social development.
Children with special needs especially benefit from it. To help you get a sense of Montessori for those of you who know nothing about it, I made this short and simple guide.
What Does Montessori Learning Mean?
Montessori education is very popular these days. It works primarily on the concept of self-directed learning. It builds on the philosophy of Maria Montessori, a physician, and educator from Italy.
Montessori learning is an approach to education that focuses on the development of the child’s individual strengths. Students become masters of self-expression, cognitive development, physical health, self-respect, social skills, and spirituality. Furthermore, the courses provide opportunities for children to develop their unique skills within each area.
According to the Montessori learning process, children learn concepts and values at a higher rate than with traditional methods. Thus, allowing for a widened understanding of the world around them.
What Are the Benefits of Montessori Learning?
1. An optimistic view of learning
Children who learn through Montessori learning show all the signs of having an optimistic view of learning. There is no shortcut for them in the learning process, and the uncertainty of where they will find understanding does not bother them.
They see all learning experiences as part of a complex process of building knowledge and making meaning. Additionally, they enjoy every bit of discovery, and they know that the joy of learning is what matters most.
2. Freedom of choice
Freedom of choice is the Montessori mission. The children are free to learn independently because their environment revolves around their needs and desires.
This includes the materials they work with, their activities, and the rhythms they follow.
When individuals are given this power over their learning, they are more likely to be creative and effective learners.
3. Hands-on experience
Montessori learning takes place in small, guided, hands-on environments with rich materials. In examining everyday events, children can uncover hidden knowledge that may lead to new solutions to problems they encounter at school and in life. Additionally, this hands-on method helps learners gain confidence and release their creativity.
4. It assists the child in their cognitive development
Montessori learning is a process in which children engage in creative activities in a safe, and supportive environment. Thus, children will be independent in the sense that they will need to solve problems by creatively using materials.
As a result, they gain exposure to creative problem-solving methods that provide them with an opportunity to think creatively. With creative thinking, the child can participate in learning in different ways.
SEE: Cognitive learning
5. Fosters independence
Montessori learning provides opportunities for children to draw and plan and think before doing. Children must be willing to act upon their feelings of need by allowing their brains or bodies to make choices and ask for help. An important foundation for independence and growth is the ability to select and implement ideas.
Components of Montessori Learning
1. The teacher
Among the earliest and most important of the materials in the Montessori teaching system is the teacher. Montessori teachers are primarily responsible for the quality of learning in the classroom.
They are also dedicated to providing an environment that supports individualized learning. These include teaching emerging notions of personal responsibility and seeking to address social, moral, physical, and intellectual growth.
The Montessori philosophy is interdisciplinary, with various scientists contributing to this interdisciplinary learning process. The learning materials available in Montessori classrooms are based on the child’s vocabulary, interests, and ability level.
Participation in classroom activities must be independent, so the child knows the teacher is helping him/her reach his/her full potential.
3. The child’s environment
The child’s environment is the “sister” of the teacher. They are inseparable, one cannot exist without the other. Besides, the affective structure of both is built along similar lines, with the teacher being the deciding factor.
Children learn in a Montessori environment that is both natural and intellectually stimulating, allowing them to explore their surroundings safely. The fact that this system has an innovative, humanistic feature at its core makes it such a desirable option for education.
4. The curriculum
The curriculum consists of three departments: free play, curiosity, and socialization. The Montessori method begins with free play where children have toys and do activities that engage their hands and minds.
Curiosity is a time set aside for children to explore, experiment, and create with materials and activities of their choosing. Parents or teachers can use socialization as a way to remind children of the values and social skills they learn during the day.
5. The method
The Montessori method is a learning environment where students are encouraged to take the lead in their learning. Also, each student’s environment varies according to their needs and emotions.
The curriculum does not focus on grades or standardized tests. Rather, it focuses on the interests and abilities of the individual child and the multi-age group of students.
Throughout Montessori teaching, each child’s individuality and personality have the opportunity to emerge. Individuality can emerge when children don’t have to suffer from barriers such as isolation.
What is the Montessori Curriculum?
The Montessori curriculum follows the children’s natural ability to learn and achieve their potential. Thus, the curriculum is based on sustained relationships between children and their environment. In addition, it does not focus on grades or tests. The curriculums are as follows:
1. Infant and toddler program (From birth to 3 years of age)
Montessori calls the first three years of a child’s life a mental embryo,” in which the child mirrors the embryo’s psychological growth. The child’s open mind helps the process by incorporating experiences, relationships, emotions, images, language, and culture.
As a result of these experiences, his/her brain develops networks of neurons that remain with them throughout life. Montessori education emphasizes speaking, coordinated movement, and independence from birth to 3 years of age.
2. Preschool and kindergarten (3 years old to 6 years old)
Through hands-on exploration and discovery of the world, Montessori education provides children with a love of learning. Additionally, this curriculum provides a child with a quality educational experience based on inquiry, discovery, and respect for the body, mind, and spirit of the child.
3. Elementary classrooms (6 years old to 12 years old)
In the elementary classroom curriculum, children learn about culture, math, geography, literature, music, and science. Learning is more effective when they have a real interest in what is being taught.
The curriculum enables children to grow at their own pace and in ways that cater to their needs while promoting normal child development.
What are the Principles of Montessori Learning?
A prepared environment
A prepared environment is one that fosters the development of each child. Also, it never forces children to acquire skills at the expense of their individuality or natural tendencies.
Thus, this principle is for the development of the senses. As a result, children are taught to walk, talk, dress themselves, use utensils, eat independently, and use language appropriately.
Imitation and observation
Imitation and observation are two basic principles of Montessori learning. Observance should be an important characteristic in life, but children are too focused on their own agendas to reflect on what they see.
The purpose of an environment like the Montessori provides children with an opportunity to observe things closely while enjoying gentle stimulation. They will learn by observing nature, other people, and even objects in their environment like chairs, tables, toys, etc.
Deliberate practice and graduated challenge
Deliberate practice is a key element of the Montessori approach and involves putting thought and effort into practicing a skill. Repeated, focused and uninterrupted ‘deliberate’ practice helps children learn mathematics, literacy, and language skills. This also allows them to grow intellectually and emotionally, as they explore their own learning potential.
Freedom of self-activity
Children in a Montessori classroom experience independent exploration as the beginning of an intense learning process. Children must be the focus of both the environment and any activities they do.
This special attention to hands, movements, expression, imagination, rational thinking, and logical development is the hallmark of Montessori education. It is important that children actively participate in their education, expressing their ideas and thoughts.
Montessori teaches a hands-on approach to learning. Therefore, children learn best by following a natural process of learning instead of following a preset curriculum.
For children to learn most effectively, Montessori believes they should be encouraged to experience their environment. In addition, they should be able to observe what they see and hear and experiment with the materials available. Lastly, they should be able to create their meanings and discoveries as they grow.
What is the Role of a Teacher in Montessori Learning?
Montessori learning is the practice of providing individualized attention to each child. Children are provided with stimulating activities, tactile materials, artistic experiences, and more. Additionally, the entire process encourages each child’s intellectual growth and development.
This helps them learn how to discover their interests, works against boredom and encourages creative play. Teachers also act as guides who help children find the resources they need to learn. Finally, Montessori educators dedicate themselves to helping children be creative, spontaneous learners.
What Are the Factors to Consider in Choosing a Montessori School?
1. Make sure the school has an in-house certified Montessori teacher
Most public schools in the US have a Montessori certification program, but not all private schools do.
When choosing a Montessori school, it’s important to ask a few questions to ensure the school offers quality teaching and hands-on experience.
If the school has an in-house certified Montessori teacher, this is a huge advantage.
2. Find out what they offer in terms of curriculum
Many of us often hear about their wonderful Montessori schools. This is good since the children get to learn differently compared to other children in other schools. You can also learn more about the specific curriculum at the school you are considering by visiting their website or asking someone who has been there.
3. The quality of the environment
Montessori schools are characterized by classrooms that are designed to encourage children’s development by facilitating the acquisition of knowledge and individual growth.
Pick schools with attractive views of wide-open spaces, where students can walk actively outdoors. Outdoor areas should be cleaned regularly and show, not just inspire, the staff’s love for learning.
Is the Montessori learning method effective?
Yes. It is a highly effective method that is proven to help children with developmental disorders, as well as those with learning problems. Montessori learning is a unique approach to child development.
Does accreditation matter in Montessori learning programs?
Yes. Montessori learning programs need accreditation. In addition, locally accredited schools and programs must satisfy state, federal, and other regulatory requirements. Understanding children’s brain development will help you assist them in reaching their full potential.
How will Montessori learning change the way children learn?
Montessori learning is more than just an educational system for children. Philosophically, it aims to promote the individual development of children’s emotions, social skills, and personalities. Montessori also emphasizes guiding children toward self-discovery through hands-on experimentation, observation, and tactile experiences
In conclusion, Montessori learners are an especially literal type of learner. I’ve observed that the learning terminology used in this type of program encourages students to acquire knowledge in a manner that is extremely concrete and friendly.
This particular learning model helps learners grow at their own individual pace while at the same time providing them with a solid knowledge base that can be built on.
My goal with this post was to help you. If you are an expert in online learning, a wealth of educational resources is available on the blog for you. The guide on online learning is a good place to start. Here you’ll find a comprehensive look at what online learning is all about.
Also, creating online courses might be of interest to you. As you may know, your online courses must be engaging if you wish to earn money from them. Here is how to create a profitable online course that will earn you money.
LMS Hero exists to serve as an information resource for everyone interested in e-Learning, and education in general. For more information, feel free to explore the blog.
Thanks for reading.