Thursday, April 21, 2011

A peek at Montessori

Truthfully it is a bit shocking that I got all the way through a Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate in education with nothing more than a mere mention of Montessori methods along the way. I taught in the public schools for six years and assumed that is how we would educate our own children. However, when it came time to find a preschool for Josephine, we quickly realized there was a better option for her. Like so many other things, learning styles are unique and varied. And what works best for one child would be disastrous for another. For Josie, it is her meticulous nature and strong sense of curiosity coupled with our goals for her confidence and independence that make Montessori the perfect fit for our family.  Her first year in preschool is winding down, and we has been such a joy to watch her thrive in this environment.

These photos are from the Family Work Day. We were all invited to school on a Sunday to have our kids share a typical work cycle with us.

Continents on the World Map

Rolling up her mat before moving on to her next work

Bea snoozes with class pet Carrot the Bunny

Math work, in this case "counting to infinity" according to Josie

Setting up some work in the Practical Life Area

Silver Polishing

This video shows Josie doing some sensorial work with the smelling bottles. I filmed her from behind the two-way mirror last week during an observation visit.

And I must say that opening her backpack each day is one of my favorite things. It is the best invitation a parent can give child: "Tell me about this." Yesterday I found wadded up fabric at the bottom of her bag and she proudly revealed it was her handmade spacesuit. Here is her explanation.

What a wonderful gift Montessori methods (which can be put to use by any educator or parent) give to children  - time to be free to explore their own curiosities and work independently in an environment that is set up for exploration and discovery!


Anonymous said...

Love the space suit. These photos are great. I loved the videos. Laurie

Anonymous said...

I, too, love when I get to open the backpack and see what treasures are inside. I always thought we'd send Rory to a public school as well - the same one I went to, in fact - but Montessori suits him to a T!