Montessori Education is a system that promotes independent exploration as a mechanism for learning. Children of different ages share the same environment, and are encouraged to collaborate and help each other.Scientifically designed educational materials keep children interested in their own work. They perform these purposeful activities with some direction from the guide, but are generally left alone. One of the best aspects of Montessori Methodology is that the Children learn at their own pace, and focus on things that interest them. Children are given individual attention and are guided to more challenging work.
One of the most profound differences between Montessori education and Conventional education is that, in Montessori, children are given the experience of discovering the answer for themselves. This leads to a much deeper learning experience, and creates a lifelong love of learning as a self-directed process of problem-solving and discovery.The method discourages traditional competitive measurements of achievement, such as grades and tests, and instead focuses on the individual progress and development of each child.
The unique aspects of Montessori Method:
- Respect for the individual
- child-centered approach
- mixed age classrooms
- the prepared environment
- student choice of activity from the teacher-prepared range of options
- specialized manipulative materials which promote learning through discovery
- uninterrupted blocks of work time
- individual, small group, and large group lessons
- freedom to move within the classroom
- specially trained and highly skilled Montessori teachers
“Education cannot be effective unless it helps a child to open up himself to life.”–Dr. Maria Montessori
What we teach at each developmental level is based on the scientific research of Dr. Maria Montessori which is informed since by 100 years plus of extensive neuro-science and educational research. Human development follows predetermined paths, therefore Montessori curriculum is based on the phases of children’s growth. Matching lessons to the precise developmental level at which the child is
primed to receive them results in smoother skill acquisition and joyous learning.
Dr. Montessori called these developmental levels the “Planes of Development.” They can be described as follows:
- First Plane (birth-age 6): development of self, sensitive periods when skills are easiest learned.
- Second Plane (ages 6-12): intellectual period, sense of morality and justice, development of reasoning skills.
- Third Plane (ages 12-18): adolescence, similar to first plane, formation of self.
- Fourth Plane (ages 18-24): experiences that expand human potential, role in society.