Montessori education has its basis on some self-intended and self-instructed activities. It relies on hands-on learning and shared practices. In Montessori education, children apply creative options in their education, while the greatly skilled teachers present age-oriented activities to direct the education courses. Children learn in groups and as separate individuals.
They focus on and search for knowledge. With this, they get maximum potential on various education levels as per age and experience.
What is Montessori Education?
This system of education was introduced by Madam Maria Montessori in 1907. She was an Italian doctor. She devoted all of her life to conceiving and implementing the social, spiritual, intellectual, and physical development of the children.
She carefully observed the children almost all through the world. She had her findings that all the children have universal development patterns. Hence she came to the conclusion that all through the world, we can teach children in a similar education system. On those findings, she developed the Montessori Education System.
Montessori accepted the challenge of learning and caring for a group of children in a slum district of Italy, San Lorenzo. She started observing the significance of a positive fostering environment that varies with the developing requirements of a child. She experienced that children act in lines with their environment. She noted the abilities and interests of the children. The response of the children was worthy of her expectations. On these experiences, she built up the Montessori Education System.
The academic helping material used in Montessori Education System follows the designs set by Madam Montessori long ago. Such accessory material supports the children in building a concrete vision of the learning concepts. These helping materials motivate the children naturally to learn their normal educational course. Children seem to work in a natural environment of mental development and they feel no burden of common school routines.
Montessori Learning System
Montessori System of Education provides environmental support to the children from their birth up to the education level of middle school. The various groups of children under the Montessori Learning System are given as under:
These are children of ages from birth to three years old stage. Following are the learning objectives of this stage of children:
Provide a safe, attractive, and fostering environment to the children
Promote trust in children about the world around them
Develop motor coordination skill and language skills in the children
To offer opportunities to the children for attaining independence in routine tasks
2. Primary Pacers
These are the children of ages three years to six years. We set the following objectives for the children of this stage in the Montessori Education System:
To foster the development of practical liberty, task perseverance, and self-regulation among the children
Endorse the social progress of the children through polite communication and natural consequences
To provide chances for imagination growth of the children leading to a confident and creative self-expression
3. Elementary Students
This stage includes children ages six years old to twelve years. We mention the basic objectives of the Montessori Learning System for the children of his stage as following:
To offer opportunities for intellectual exploration that support and guide the children interests
Support the progress of children for developing self-confidence, imagination, and self-sufficiency
To develop an understanding of the children role in the community, in culture, and in the world around
5. Adolescents/ Early Teenagers
This stage enlists the adolescent children of ages twelve years to fifteen years. Montessori Learning System focuses on the following objectives for the learning process of the children in this stage:
To help out the young children in understanding of themselves in some broad learning frames of reference
Provide a circumstance for practical activities of the children in their academics
To emphasize the advancement of self-expression, self-reliance, and intelligence in interpersonal relationships of the children
Montessori Methods of Learning
The Montessori Method has its characters of providing a planned environment: neat, agreeable in look, simple and genuine, where each point possesses its reason in order to assist in the growth of the children. In a Montessori classroom, we integrate children of diverse ages being grouped in a span of 3 years ago.
It endorses social behavior, respect, and harmony among the children as expected. The pre-planned environment serves children with opportunities. They become busy in attractive and freely opted works. These works bring out longer periods of attention free of any interruption. This liberty allows children to learn in agreement with others in a small society in the form of a classroom of their own.
With the Montessori Method, children learn with concrete aids that were systematically designed for them. It provides them the hints to discover the world through their personal experiences. It develops the cognitive abilities of the children. The specially designed materials in the Montessori Method of Teaching tolerate the children to identify the error by themselves. In this way, they become accountable for their own knowledge.
The teacher plays the role of an observer or as a guide. Teacher: supports and arouse the children on executing the learning efforts. It all facilitates the children to act, want, and think freely. The teacher assists the children to build confidence and discipline. The Montessori Method covers all periods of child education. Its span runs from birth to about 18 years of age. The Montessori Method of Teaching also requires an integrated curriculum containing all necessary subjects.
The Montessori Environment
In the Montessori Education System, the Montessori environment provides the standard platform of learning to the children. The Montessori environment is an open, neat, pleasing simple, and genuine place. At such a place, each component of the environment helps the development of the children. The extent and quality of the environment focus on children’s stature, study equipment, and experienced teachers.
These factors support the children to learn individually and also in groups. The Montessori classroom has many theme areas where teachers expose study materials and books in front of the children. Children then perform individual or group activities in their own rhythm and style. Each child chooses the learning material on their options from the provided environment.
Montessori environment builds up the independence of the children in the course discovery and education processes. Liberty of performance and self-learned discipline carries on each child into the activities that act in response to their progressive needs. There exist “diverse age classrooms” that favor mutual cooperation among the children. The children satisfy their desire of learning, common respect, and the gaining of deep knowledge in the Montessori environment.
Montessori school is different from other schools in many perspectives. These schools provide a special and equipped environment for the schooling of the children. Children of different ages learn various skills and drills in specialized schools. Here we give various levels of Montessori School:
1. School Programs for Infants
Here are many categories of Montessori classrooms oriented for children from birth to three years of age. There are two major categories of these they are Nest Children Community and the Young Children Community.
Nest Children Community includes students of age two months to fifteen months or when a child starts walking. In Young Children Community, we place students of ages from one and a half years to three years. Environments of both these communities highlight materials and activities framed to the children’s range and abilities, developing movement, and span of independent activities.
The development of autonomy in laboring is typically is stressed as well. Some schools also offer “Parent-Infant” co-classes where parents contribute to the performance of young children.
2. School Programs for Preschoolers
In Montessori schooling, classrooms made for children from 3 to 6 years of age are mostly known as Children’s Houses from1906. This age level in education is also called “Primary”.
A model classroom contains 20 to 30 children in mixed-age groups. A highly trained teacher and some assistants guide and supervise the learning process of the students. Classrooms usually serve child-sized tables with chairs arranged alone or in small groups. Activities for students in Children’s Houses are naturally hands-on, tangible materials to educate concepts. These materials support in building up a concrete thoughtfulness of essential concepts upon which the future education of the children depend.
3. Elementary Schooling
Elementary schooling provides classrooms that serve mixed-age students of 6 to 9 years of age and 9 to 12 years of age groups. Sometimes students of extended groups of 6 to 12 years of age also exist. The elementary stage in Montessori Schooling presents lessons normally to the children of small groups.
Children are let free to follow up with independent work of their interests and individual responsibility. Lessons comprise works in languages, mathematics, sciences, and arts, etc. Students follow searching for resources outside of classrooms that relate to academic activities.
In Montessori schooling, we use the term “cosmic education” to point out both the universal range of lessons and the ideas that help children in education. Children understand the human role in the mutually supporting working of the world.
Middle and High School Programs
Montessori schooling for middle and high-level children is no as much developed as it is for the younger children. The Montessori cared not for students of this level. She did not establish a training program for the teachers of the children of this grade during her life.
Montessori school organizations have afterward developed many teacher training programs and courses. The students of adolescent age now can find opportunities in Montessori schools. Most of the Montessori schools take children of 12 to 16 years of age but some schools also extend their learning programs for adolescents of 17 or 18 years of age.