The content of the article
- What is the Montessori Method
- Montessori child development
- The basic philosophy of pedagogy
- Basic principles
- Advantages and disadvantages of the system
- Features of the separation of the Montessori classroom
- Real life zone
- Sensory Development Zone
- Math zone
- Language zone
- Space zone
- Montessori Method at Home
- Components required for home-based learning
- Montessori method for children from 1 year
- Special exercises
- Game library for a child from 2 to 3 years
- Controversial Montessori Methods
A unique system of early development of children is chosen by many parents both in Russia and many other countries of the world. This program of developmental classes is universal, therefore it is also suitable for correctional classes. Montessori method encourages the free upbringing of the child and allows early learning even of the smallest crumbs up to a year old.
What is the Montessori Method
This is the child-rearing system that was developed at the beginning of the twentieth century by Maria Montessori, an Italian teacher. She created a special developmental environment and her main task was to see the kids adapt to society and develop their self-care skills. Montessori’s pedagogy did not set a goal to increase the level of intelligence, but the learning outcomes were unexpected – for several months, children with developmental disabilities caught up and, in some cases, even surpassed their healthy peers.
After summarizing the theoretical works of other scientists and independently conducted experiments, the teacher created an author’s methodology for the development of children, which was named after her. Soon after, the Montessori program was introduced into the education of children with a normal level of mental development and showed impressive results. The main difference between the methodology and other similar systems is the desire for self-development of crumbs.
Montessori child development
The main motto of the Italian teacher is “help your child do it yourself.” Giving the baby complete freedom of choice of activities and organizing an individual approach to each, Montessori skillfully guided the children to independent development, not trying to remake them, but recognizing their right to remain themselves. This helped the children more easily reveal their creative potential and achieve better results in the development of thinking than their peers who were otherwise taught.
Classes on the Montessori method did not allow comparisons of children or competitive moods. In her pedagogy there were no generally accepted criteria for evaluating or encouraging children, as were coercion and punishment prohibited. According to the observation of the teacher, every child wants to become an adult faster, and he will only be able to achieve this by getting his own life experience, so the teacher should give him the right to be independent, acting mainly as an observer, and help only if necessary. Giving a crumb of freedom leads to the education of independence.
Children are allowed to independently choose the speed and rhythm of classes, which will be most effective for them. They themselves determine how much time to devote to the game, what material to use in training. If desired, the student changes the environment. And most importantly – the baby independently chooses the direction in which he wants to develop.
The basic philosophy of pedagogy
The Montessori School sets a goal in the direction of independent activity. The teacher’s task is to use all available means for the development of independence, sensual perception of children, paying special attention to touch. The teacher should respect the choice of the baby and create an environment for him in which he will develop comfortably. The teacher in the process of learning is neutral and acts as an observer, helping the child only if he himself turns to him with a request for this. Montessori in the process of her work came to the following conclusions:
- the child is a unique person from the moment of birth;
- parents and teachers should only help the baby to reach their potential, while not appearing ideal in their abilities and character;
- adults should only tell the baby in his independent activity, patiently waiting for the initiative from the student.
The key role of the methodology is played by the idea of self-education. Parents and teachers should determine what children are interested in and create suitable developing conditions by explaining how to get knowledge. The author’s technique of Maria Montessori involves an action based on the principle of responding to a child’s request: “Help me do it myself.” The postulates of this pedagogical approach:
- the baby makes decisions independently, without the help of adults;
- the developmental environment provides the child with the opportunity to learn;
- the teacher intervenes in the learning process only at the request of the child.
The author of the methodology said that there is no need to educate children specifically, one should only see personalities in them. The guys independently realize their abilities and capabilities, for this they are placed in a prepared environment. To ensure that development proceeds in an optimal mode, Montessori has formed the key principles of training:
- Individuality. The main rule in the construction of teaching methods is an individual approach. The teacher is required to help the ward maximize the potential already inherent in him from birth.
- Self-correction. Children themselves should notice their mistakes and try to fix it on their own..
- Personal space. This principle implies an awareness of one’s own position in the group and the understanding that each item has its own place. The approach helps to unobtrusively instill knowledge of the crumbs.
- Social interaction. The methodology suggests creating groups with children of different ages, while the younger ones will receive help from the elders. Such social skills instill in children a desire to take care of loved ones.
- Life experience. Development takes place with the help of real household items. When interacting with them, the kids learn to tie shoelaces, set the table, etc. So the guys get useful life experience from an early age..
Advantages and disadvantages of the system
Despite the fact that the pedagogy of Maria Montessori is recognized as one of the best in the world, many do not support her ideas. Parents should carefully study its positive and negative aspects. Advantages of the education system:
- children develop independently, without the intervention and pressure of adults;
- guys discover the world empirically, which contributes to better assimilation of the material;
- individual comfortable pace of development is selected;
- kids learn to respect the privacy of others;
- no negative, violent, or criticized students;
- mental development occurs through the senses, with much attention being paid to fine motor skills;
- groups of different ages are formed taking into account the interests of children;
- this approach helps to grow an independent personality;
- children from a very young age learn to make decisions on their own;
- kids learn to take care of others through helping younger students in the group;
- the skill of interaction in society develops, self-discipline is brought up.
The Montessori system has fewer drawbacks, but for some parents they are fundamentally important when choosing a parenting methodology. The disadvantages of this approach to education are:
- insufficient attention is paid to the development of imagination, creativity, communication skills;
- for preschool children, the game is the main activity, but Montessori believed that toys do not give the child benefits for practical life;
- entering the school, it is difficult for the student to readjust to another option of interaction with the teacher;
- children get to know little tales that give an idea of good and evil, teach them to come out of different life situations;
- Montessori-educated children sometimes find it difficult to adapt to the discipline of a traditional school;
- the system does not offer physical exercises, so kids lack physical activity.
Features of the separation of the Montessori classroom
The main element of the author’s pedagogy is the developing environment: all equipment and furniture must strictly correspond to the child’s height, age, and proportions. Children must independently cope with the need to rearrange objects in the room, while doing this as quietly as possible so as not to disturb others. Such actions, according to Montessori, perfectly develop motor skills.
Students are given the freedom to choose the place where they will study. The room should have a lot of free space, access to fresh air, be well lit. Panoramic glazing is welcome to maximize daylight. At the same time, the interior should be elegant and beautiful, with a calm color palette that does not distract the attention of children. Mandatory use of fragile objects in an environment so that children learn to use them and understand their value.
Necessarily provides for the opportunity to use water by students, for this purpose, sinks are installed at a height accessible to the kids. Teaching aids are at the pupils’ eye level so they can use them without adult help. In this case, all the materials provided to children should be one at a time – this teaches the children behavior in society, to take into account the needs of other people. The basic rule of exploitation of materials is the one who first took it. The guys should be able to negotiate, exchange with each other..
The developing environment is divided into several zones, for each of which specific materials for classes are provided. They are toys and objects made from natural materials. The author’s system identifies the following main areas:
Real life zone
This area of study is also called practical. The main function of the materials here is to educate children in household affairs, to form hygiene habits. Classes in the real life zone help kids learn:
- take care of yourself (change clothes, cook, etc.);
- communicate with other students, the teacher;
- take care of things (water the flowers, clean the room, feed the animals);
- move in different ways (walk the line, silently, etc.).
Ordinary toys in the practice area are not welcome, and all training materials must be genuine. Children are offered:
- vessels for transfusion of water;
- potted indoor flowers;
- bodyboards or “smart boards”;
- cut flowers;
- watering cans;
- scoop with a broom;
- strips that stick to the floor (guys walk on them, carrying different objects).
Sensory Development Zone
This part uses materials for the development of sensory perception, with the help of which the baby also trains fine motor skills. Using these things prepares children for acquaintance with various subjects taught at school. In the zone of sensory development are used:
- calls, noise cylinders;
- sets of blocks with in-cylinder cylinders, brown staircase, pink tower, etc .;
- color plates;
- tablets of different weights (taught to distinguish the mass of objects);
- boxes with smells;
- warm jugs;
- rough tablets, keyboard, different types of fabrics, a board for palpation;
- sorters, sensory pouches, biological chest of drawers, designer;
- flavor jars.
This part of the room is connected with the sensory: the baby compares, organizes, measures objects. Materials such as rods, a pink tower, cylinders perfectly prepare for the assimilation of mathematical knowledge. In this area, interaction with a specific material is assumed, which facilitates the learning of mathematics. For this purpose, use:
- structural triangles, geometric chest of drawers;
- chains of beads (help to study linear numbers);
- numbers, numerical rods made of rough paper, spindles (needed for the smallest who are not yet familiar with numbers from 0 to 10);
- a tower of multi-colored beads (I introduce the child to numbers from 11 to 99);
- numerical and gold material from beads (when combined, the children are taught the decimal system);
- tables of mathematical actions, brands.
The materials used in the part of sensory development contribute to the baby’s speech, therefore these 2 zones are also closely related. Teachers who work in kindergartens and development centers according to the Montessori method daily offer children games and exercises for the development of speech, monitor the correct pronunciation and use of words. In this case, various role-playing and creative games are used, where the kids learn to compose stories, describe actions and objects, etc. To develop reading and speaking skills, they use:
- hatching frames;
- letters made of rough paper;
- boxes with figures for intuitive reading;
- movable alphabet;
- signatures to items;
- cards with the image of various objects;
- metal inlay figures.
This is part of the classroom where children learn about the environment. The teacher here must take into account that the construction of the lesson is abstract. Often children are offered a vivid example with some phenomenon, due to which he independently comes to certain conclusions. In the space zone they work with:
- literature containing information on a particular topic;
- calendars, timeline;
- layout of the solar system, continents, landscapes;
- classification of animals and plants;
- materials for experiments.
Montessori Method at Home
To implement the methodology, parents should create a suitable atmosphere for the baby – to do zoning of space. A place for individual classes is equipped with didactic material, helping adults maintain order, and the child is well-versed in “toys.” Five main areas are freely located even in a small room, the main requirement is that all subjects are ordered and accessible to the student. To succeed in teaching a child according to the Montessori method, the following requirements are imposed on the zones:
- Practical Children get basic household skills in it. Brushes, dustpan, buttons, shoelaces, shoe shine kits, etc..
- Zone of perception. Elements must differ in shape, color, size, weight (caps, bottles, boxes, jars, etc.). Small objects help to develop fine motor skills, work out movements, develop memory, attention.
- Mathematical Corner. Subjects should improve their abstract thinking skills, train perseverance and patience. Materials are sets of geometric shapes, counting sticks, etc..
- Language zone. The kid is offered everything that is necessary for writing and reading – cubes, volume letters, alphabet, copybooks.
- Space part. Introduces the world (mysteries of nature, weather events, etc.). The material is cards, figures or images of animals, stones, shells, books, etc..
Components required for home-based learning
The learning process is based on the student’s interaction with the material, which can be any objects – specially bought or made toys, household items (jars, pieces of cloth, brushes, etc.), books, three-dimensional numbers and letters, geometric shapes, paints, plasticine. An important element in the Montessori technique is musical greetings, which help to choose simple actions for each phrase that are easily repeated by the baby. This provides an opportunity to supplement physical activity classes, develop memory.
The Montessori system, if desired, can be used when raising children at home. Parents buy or make all the necessary training and game materials with their own hands. Children’s songs are easy to find and download from the Internet. All that is required from the parents is the arrangement of the classroom and passive assistance to the child during the lessons. At the same time, a great advantage of the technique is its versatility, that is, even children of different ages can simultaneously engage in play areas, performing various exercises.
Montessori method for children from 1 year
At this stage, finger motility is trained and the development of sensory perception continues. In addition, children are given basic knowledge of order. The Montessori system for the smallest involves the use of safe materials and games made from natural raw materials (wood, rubber, fabrics). A baby age 1 year and older already knows how to concentrate, actively repeats actions for adults, learn to associate actions with consequences.
Montessori’s technique harmoniously fits into any system of family relations. The kid does not need to be forced to perform any action, instead, follow what he is reaching for more than he likes to do, and direct the energy in the right direction. For this purpose, you can use creative, logical, didactic games. For example:
- Secret box. Fold in a large chest jars, bottles, small boxes. Put something smaller in each of the items. By spinning and revealing objects, children train fine motor skills.
- Fishing. The crumbs are used to place the favorite toy in a deep / wide bowl, covered with cereals, pasta. Additionally, chestnuts, small cones and other items are buried in the bulk contents. The student must find the hidden.
- Artist. Print the pattern template, give it to the crumb along with pieces of colored paper. Lubricate the figure with glue and offer to decorate it with colored pieces.
Game library for a child from 2 to 3 years
As the children grow up, the role of parents should increasingly move into an observant position. At the age of 2-3 years, the guys already understand that in order to get a certain result, you need to learn, and the learning process becomes interesting to them. Suitable games will be:
- Puzzles Cut old postcards into 4-6 parts, show the crumb how they can be folded into one picture and offer to repeat.
- Constructor Shreds of fabric, pebbles, beads, ropes, etc. are used. The task of parents is to provide the child with materials and observe. The little pean himself will find a way to combine them.
- Sorter. The game is designed to teach the crumbs to the fact that each item in the house has its own place. In addition, the baby will get used to group things by color, method of application, size. Provide it with different objects, crusts and drawers, setting the rules and showing the place of each item several times.
Controversial Montessori Methods
The main advantage of the technique is the independent development of the child, at a comfortable speed, without the strict intervention of adults. However, there are several controversial aspects that cast doubt on the effectiveness of the Montessori system, for example:
- Education is more focused on mental development, while the physical attention is paid to a minimum.
- Most manuals develop analytical, logical thinking, fine motor skills, and intelligence. Emotional and creative spheres are practically not affected..
- Closed Montessori methodology is not suitable for closed, shy children. It involves independence and freedom, and quiet children are unlikely to ask for help if they suddenly can not do something..
- Teachers note that after training on this system, the guys hardly adapt to school conditions.