“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.” – Maria Montessori
India has had an interest in the Montessori Method of education since 1910. In fact, Rabindranath Tagore had established a number of Tagore-Montessori schools in India, as early as 1929. Even worldwide, the Montessori Method has had over 100 years of success in diverse cultures.
It functions on the belief that the child is naturally yearning for knowledge and will learn efficiently when supported by a well thought out learning environment. It is an approach that has understood human tendencies and the best ways to nurture those innate tendencies to maximise the development of the child in the right direction.
Practical Life: According to the Montessori Method, The child learns to do basic day to day activities such as pouring a glass of water or tying a shoelace. This helps the child feel more independent and capable of completing simple activities without relying on adults.
Sensorial Activities: According to the Montessori Method, Each of the five senses is refined individually. The differences between colours, textures, pitch, etc are stressed upon, encouraging appreciation for these senses in the children.
Language: According to the Montessori Method, Reading and conversation are a significant aspect of the Montessori system. The natural progression of written expression and reading is encouraged by enforcing the link between sound and symbol – children effortlessly identify the sound while tracing sandpaper letters with their fingers.
Arithmetic: According to the Montessori Method, Arithmetic deals with expressions such as shapes, space, numbers (1-10) and their relationship and progresses towards larger quantities and abstract. The materials are so beautifully designed and appropriate for each child during his/her sensitive periods of learning math. Mathematical apparatus provides the necessary stimulation for the child to learn math concepts and, the math operations addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, truly understand what each one means in their deeper sense.
Cultural Studies: According to the Montessori Method, Geography, botany, zoology, art, and music are presented as extensions of language learning activities, and are integrated into the child’s environment. Children learn about people and cultures from all over the world with an attitude of respect and admiration.
According to the Montessori Method, the child learns best when decisions are made by the child. This is why the teacher, child, and environment need to function together to stimulate the mind of the child. The teacher always encourages independence, freedom within limits, and a sense of order. The child utilises what is present in the environment to learn and grow, seeking guidance or support from the teacher whenever required.