Montessori Schools use an alternative methodology based on the educational method proposed by the Italian pedagogue Marie Montessori (1870-1952). These types of schools began in Italy, but little by little they spread throughout the rest of the world, until they became one of the main educational methods of current teaching.
WHAT ARE THESE SCHOOLS CHARACTERIZED BY?
A school based on the Montessori methodology is characterized by various aspects, all of them of vital importance for the development of the children of the center, respecting their rhythms, needs, etc. Some of these aspects are:
– A prepared environment , that is, orderly, harmonious, aesthetic, simple, real, hygienic and safe, in which each element is carefully chosen for a reason and with a purpose, favoring the learning and individual development of the child.
– Freedom of action : The child has total autonomy and freedom of action, thus promoting a multitude of moments of concentration, which should not be interrupted, as well as encouraging the child to discover and learn all the contents through play and free exploration .
– Respect : Both the educator, the objects, the contents, the spaces, the proposed games, etc; They will respect the individual rhythm of each child, taking into account at all times their capacities, their difficulties, their limits and their needs.
– Observation and stimulation : The educator will be a mere observer and guide in learning, leaving the child the necessary freedom to carry out their own exploration, facilitating a more natural development, helping and stimulating them in all their efforts, as well as improving their self-esteem , your self-confidence and inner discipline.
– Learning based on the game : The game will be the main learning tool, thus capturing the attention and motivation of the child, promoting a more integral learning and a greater development of all their capacities and abilities.
– Relationship between parents and educators: The relationship and coordination of parents and the center is of vital importance in the development and learning of children, since these learning spaces must be equalized and teaching carried out in a unitary way, thus facilitating the understanding of children, their adaptation period, favoring the understanding of content and activities, etc.
WHAT AGES DOES THE MONTESSORI METHOD COVER?
The schools that use the Montessori methodology cover a wide range of ages. They integrate from birth to eighteen years of age. In the infant stage they are divided into two groups: from 0 to 3 and from 3 to 6:
– From 0 to 3 years: During this time the child creates the foundations of his future: his self-esteem, his self-concept, his bonds of attachment, etc. Incorporating in this way: new experiences, sensations, relationships, emotions, languages, etc; all through their senses and experiences. By which neural networks will be formed in your brain, which will then remain throughout your life.
In the period from birth to three years, the Montessori methodology focuses on the development of speech, coordinated movement and the child’s autonomy, since these three aspects promote the child’s confidence, allow him to discover his own potential and gives them individuality within the society in which they live.
– From 3 to 6 years: At this stage, from 3 to 6 years of age, there is already a school curriculum as such, dividing the contents of their learning into four areas of work, combining them with self-confidence, development and integral growth, etc:
o Daily life, that is, learning about caring for oneself, others and the environment that surrounds them. This learning includes: social norms, culture, hygiene, norms, etc.
o Sensory: In this content area the child will learn through their senses. A very common tool to carry it out are sensory materials ( Montessori materials ), through which they learn new textures, smells, tastes, colors, sounds, etc., allowing them to find meaning and order in the world, favoring their perception and concentration, etc.
o Language: In this stage the child’s already acquired language is enriched, they also learn to write and express themselves through drawing.
o Mathematics: The game, the discovery and the exploration, allow the child to understand and know mathematical concepts, going from concrete thoughts to more abstract thoughts.
In the 6 to 18-year-old stage , the educational content is governed more by a historical, evolutionary and integrated vision of said knowledge, divided into five broader areas of content (Development of the universe and the earth, Development of life, Development of human beings, Communication by signs and the history of numbers), in which creativity, curiosity, motivation, meaningful learning are favored.
HOW IS IT DIFFERENT FROM THE TRADITIONAL METHOD?
The Montessori methodology , unlike traditional education, relies on the child’s ability to learn autonomously, without the need for adult intervention and indication. Therefore, letting the child be the protagonist of their learning.
In turn, Montessori education, unlike the traditional one, avoids competition between children, punishments and rewards, intelligence and learning being reflected in a numerical grade, etc.
To achieve this, in the first years of life it is based on individual work, and in the later years it uses group learning, in both cases based on the idea of learning through enjoyment.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF THE MONTESSORI EDUCATIONAL METHOD?
In this alternative method of education for our children, we can find many advantages . From PregDream, we highlight those that we believe are most important and that most influence the learning and integral development of the child:
– It favors a positive attitude when facing the arrival at the center and motivation towards studies.
– Improves children’s self-esteem and self – concept , teaching them from childhood to enhance their skills, improve their weaknesses and face their limitations, all in a positive and respectful way.
– It facilitates in the future an adequate incorporation into the social world , since they have been educated in an environment of freedom and respect.
– Provides a high level of autonomy in children, favoring conflict resolution without adult help, the acquisition of social skills, the ability to make decisions on their own, etc.
– With this method, children create and lay the foundations for correct learning , which will directly influence their future studies, as well as their work, social, family life, etc.
– It favors the acquisition of responsibilities and improves the management of frustration before difficulties.
– They learn to respect others and make themselves respected.