What is Montessori Education?
This pedagogy was developed by Dr. Maria Montessori (1870-1952) – one of the first women to study medicine in Italy at the beginning of the 20th century. This alone required a lot of strength and stamina. What a great woman!
This pedagogy has been established for a while.
Antiquated because it is already so old? On the contrary! The principles of the pedagogy are as up-to-date and important as never before.
Because children in Montessori education are understood and recognized as independent and self-reliant personalities and are allowed to develop as exactly that.
Competencies that are more important than ever, in our fast-paced, digital world.
The concept of man/ anthropology and lessons learned
Behind the pedagogy of Dr. Maria Montessori is a very positive concept of man – the attitude that every child becomes a person with a healthy self-confidence, who is efficient, intelligent, helpful and capable of cooperation. Your child can use their potential and find their way in life and society.
Exactly what we want for our children, right?
Dr. Maria Montessori was also firmly convinced that within her upbringing, was the approach to solving many global problems, such as peace. She realized that children develop into responsible human beings when they grow up in an atmosphere that is characterized by mutual respect and consideration, that they can develop according to their own inner needs – the cornerstone for a more peaceful world.
You may now ask yourself – where did this knowledge from Dr. Montessori come from? Good question. She discovered this through careful and long observation and came to the following conclusions:
- Children want to work independently
- Children can concentrate
- Children develop their personality through independent work and development takes place in four phases.
Learning with Joy and Ease
Dr. Montessori developed materials – for every stage of development. She tested them and improved it so that the children can concentrate as best as possible.
Montessori’s discovery: Children learn with joy and ease when they have the right tools at the right time and when they are allowed to choose their activities freely. The idea of free choice of work in a prepared environment was born long before today’s progressive education methods.
How does the Learning work?
Imagine that you enter a bright, open plans office, filled with wonderful, inviting working areas. Just for children. With work tables that accommodate 1-4 children in mixed-age groups and communal areas where small (and large) people can meet.
With shelves full of appealing, curiosity-inspiring things that serve to learn. By allowing your child to move freely in the classrooms, choose their activities and work on something as long as it takes. This is accompanied lovingly and specifically by highly qualified experts in this teaching method.
And finally your child learns everything (or more) than children in regular schools. This comes with the additional result that your child enjoys learning, can develop a high degree of independence and social competence and is encouraged according to their talents, opportunities, and pace.
This type of education enables children to benefit optimally from their individual “sensitive phases” by offering them time, suitable materials and support.
Sensitive phase means that children are particularly receptive to certain processes. We take advantage of this by offering exactly the materials and topics that your child is ready and open to learn.
Your child’s wish to “do it themselves” in the children’s house or “to think for themselves” at school, is respected as the top priority: During these phases, the child learns on its own initiative with joy, pleasure, and ease. And this is how we maintain the joy in learning.
Numerous of the learning materials created by Maria Montessori also contain a “built-in error control”, which allows the children to check for themselves whether they are coming to the correct solutions – without the permanent intervention of teachers.
When I first saw these beautiful materials, that you can find with us, I spontaneously wished that I could go back to school!
Many wonderful learning materials can be found in a Montessori school. Often to grasp, in the truest sense (while touching) and generally of high quality and extremely appealing for the children. This makes the learning tangible, all the senses are addressed and abstract processes, such as in mathematics, become actually child’s play and in fact, easy to understand and not as complex as often assumed.
These materials developed through long experiments cover the areas of «language», «mathematics», «cultural»,«practical life» and all the senses.
We call this “open-plan office for children” with all the (learning) material, the prepared environment. We have these, both in the children’s house (for children up to 6 years) and in the schoolroom. This provides your child with the tools they need for a healthy and age-appropriate development.
Each piece has its place and is the only of its kind in the schoolroom. The orderly variety of Montessori material corresponds to the children’s natural curiosity and urge to learn.
The Teacher’s Role
Teachers who work with the Montessori method do not teach in the conventional sense, but rather enable the children to learn by themselves.
“It is not our concern to let the child learn things, but to always keep that light, which we call intelligence, awake within them- that must be our role.” (Dr. Maria Montessori)
Basically, it is about introducing the learning topics (in so-called presentations), and then accompanying the children in their work, without interfering too much. Just like a good leader in business and therefore also a coach. We call this accompanying the children.
In addition, of course, we keep a close eye on the children to ensure that the learning content and progress is documented for each child. This allows the teachers to offer other topics in a targeted manner. This not only ensures that we cover the curriculum for all children, but also that we optimally promote their talents and possibilities.