“The most important period of life is not the age of university studies, but the first one, the period from birth to the age of six’.
Those words inspired us to create place for children where they can fulfil their potential and learn skills not only for further education, but for life.
Dr Montessori education is well known all over the World for over hundred years. Her discoveries about child development are timeless and complement the EYFS curriculum view of learning. Both curriculums are so different but at at the same time, highlights the same elements of successful learning.
- Unique Child
- Develop positive, meaningful relationship with a teacher
- Enabling environment.
The core of Montessori education is a deep understanding of child development and its needs. She has discovered that the key to help children to fulfil their potential is well prepared environment, teachers who are able to guide children in their learning journey.
The child in a Montessori classroom learns through understanding the concept of the world around them. It learns solid foundation for writing and reading as well as giving the opportunity to explore Math in a concrete way, through “hands-on” materials, abstract math concepts become easier to comprehend. Every educational material has an aim to teach a child skill which is transferable into real life and prepare them for further development.
Mix age class help to promote peer learning, develop empathy and leadership skills Independence is encouraging, children have freedom to what, when and where they want to work with. There are no rewards, but there is freedom within limits. Children feel they are part of classroom community where everyone promoting mutual respect, peace, and kindness not only to each other but to the outside World.
Children coming from a Montessori background are independent, confident, assertive and have good concentration abilities, which is vital to succeed in further learning journey.
Dr Maria Montessori, an Italian physician and educator, founded the Montessori method in Italy in the early 1900s. Her scientific approach to education was shaped around the individual needs of the child. Her goal was to facilitate the individual development of the child, both physical and mental, through a system that is focused on spontaneous use of the human intellect. She discovered that the first six years of human life constitute the most important period in the child’s development. The main principles of Montessori education are:
- Independence & Confidence– The Montessori environment helps children to develop their independence, concentration, self-awareness, self-control, and self-confidence. Children are taught how to make their own choices and to handle things by themselves.
- Guidance– Montessori does not direct the child but guides him/her. The role of the Montessori teacher within such an environment is to observe and guide each student on his/her unique developmental journey. The focus is on allowing children to learn and lead the way rather than on teaching them.
- Prepared Environment- Montessori classrooms is a place where children can do things on their own or in small groups. In the Montessori classroom, children make independent choices, enjoy the freedom of movement, and are guided towards the love of learning. This is possible because all activities are available to children; they can explore a wide range of meaningful and attractive materials at will. Children decide on accessible activities consisting of self-correcting materials that are displayed on open shelves. They work in distinct work areas: on tables, or on rugs on the floor. The environment must accommodate a child’s sensitive periods (important aspect of a Montessori classroom). Sensitive periods are the moments in the child’s life when he/she concentrates mainly on aspects of his/her development.
- Peer Learning- This assists the development of empathy and leadership. The older children are helping the younger ones; it gives them feeling of responsibility and helpfulness. The younger children are provided with inspiration and an example from their older friends.
- Individuality- Each child is different and therefore the teacher must follow the child’s singular process of learning.
- Flexibility– There is freedom within limits. With the teacher’s observation of each child and his/her progress, which is expressed in the child’s balanced behaviour, happiness, maturity, and their level of work.
All these elements reinforce the child’s innate love of learning and exploration during all their future life. They will grow to become happy and successful adults.