|The Montessori method of teaching aims for the fullest
possible development of the whole child, ultimately preparing
him for life's many rich experiences. Complemented by
her training in medicine, psychology and anthropology,
Dr. Maria Montessori (1870 - 1952) developed her philosophy
of education based upon actual observations of children.
Children pass through sensitive periods of development
early in life. Dr. Montessori described the child's mind
between the time of birth and six years of age as the
"absorbent mind". It is during this stage that
a child has a tremendous ability to learn and assimilate
from the world around him, without conscious effort. During
this time, children are particularly receptive to certain
external stimuli. A Montessori teacher recognizes and
takes advantage of these highly perceptive stages through
the introduction of materials and activities which are
specially designed to stimulate the intellect.
Encouraged to focus her attention on one particular
quality, the child works at her own optimum level
in an environment where beauty and orderliness are emphasized
and appreciated. A spontaneous love of "work"
is revealed as the child is given the freedom (within
boundaries) to make her own choices.
Montessori teachers are trained facilitators in the
classroom, always ready to assist and direct. Their
purpose is to stimulate the child's enthusiasm for learning
and to guide it, without interfering with the child's
natural desire to teach himself and become independent.
Each child works through his individual cycle of activities,
and learns to truly understand according to his own
unique needs and capabilities.
Everything in a Montessori classroom has a specific
use or purpose. There is nothing in the prepared environment
that the child cannot see or touch. All of the furniture
and equipment is scaled down to the child's size and
is within easy reach.
A quality Montessori classroom has a busy, productive
atmosphere where joy and respect abound. Within such
an enriched environment, freedom, responsibility, and
social and intellectual development spontaneously flourish!
Interested in becoming a Montessori teacher? Find
out how you can earn your Montessori diploma now without
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