5 keys of Montessori’s education environment

In Montessori method of education, there is the terminology we always use when we talk about a child “The Absorbent Mind”, Montessori discovered that unlike the adult, the child has a creative intelligent that exists in his unconscious mental stage. Like a crystal, he would easily absorb precise skills and abilities through activities.

According to her between the ages of 0 – 3 years old is the most formative years for learning capacity. Given the right conditions and help, a child would have a natural spontaneous love and natural desire to learn and work.

“In an environment where order exists, a child can categorize his perception and make sense of his world. In such an environment he forms an inner conceptual framework with which to understand and deal with his world” – quote by Montessori.

Therefore the following are 5 keys points are REQUIRED to help develop a child in a Montessori’s type of environment, be it at home or at school.

1. Learning through 5 senses – a young child has their natural curiosity to explore. They love to experiment things around them using their 5 senses. They love to taste their toys, touch it, smell it and all sort of activities that stimulates their senses. Find toys or material that can stimulate their senses on their early year of development. When you buy toys, always think of this!

2. Sensitivity to small object [2 years to 2 1/2 years old] – kids love to see small object, they can right spot small tiny object around them. This is an important development because it helps the child’s power of observation and concentration. This is the good time to bring them outside and expose them with the big outdoor environment and stimuli their mind by asking question that make them look for detail around. “Come can you see ants around that tree? can you help me count them?” or “do you see the sky, can you spot any starts up there? can you help me count them?” etc.

3. Sensitivity to co-ordination of movement/ walking [2 1/2 years to 4 years old] – on this stage a child learn how to coordinate their body and mind. They learn how to control their body under the control of their will. Kids love to repeat doing things over and over again on this age. It is a sign that they in process of perfecting their movement and master specific skill through interaction with things around them. Do you see kids who loves playing blocks? They like to build it and dismantle it and rebuild it again and again. Don’t be shock, it is a part of their discoveries.

4. Sensitivity to Language [1 1/2 year to 3 years] – children pick up language from sounds around them be it music, language spoken, melodies, dork barking etc. This is a good period of time to introduce the world building for them. Showing an object and the sounds spoken for the object. Do a lot of story and tell to the kids, colorful and big picture books that introduce words for them. Go out and point to the object and give the sound of the name of the object. Remember always and always stimuli their mind when ever you have chance to do it.

5. Sensitivity to social aspect of life [2 1/2 years – 6 years old]. Children pay special attention to other children of their own age. However children at about 3 years old are solitary play, they prefer to play by their own self alone. And slowly they go for parallel play where they need others to play together. Slowly the child learn to be part of big group and a team. Kids need to be alone to play/interact with their environment, this help their focus and concentration ability as well. They need quite time to be able to absorb the skill they try to master.

Remember, when you introduce Montessori concept to a child, you are not just introducing a skill of *know how* BUT you are building up a character.

Montessori once said: ” While society had often tended to focus on the adult, Montessori believed that since the adult came into being from the child through years of hard work, patient care, study and practice, focusing on the protection of children’s rights and welfare would be the key to progress in society”

She also stressed her point that education alone was not good enough if parents and teachers have the wrong assumption about children. Every child have their potential ability to excel! It is our job as an adult to facilitate this hidden ability from them.

All the best and Good Luck!

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Maria Montessori – The Discovery of the Child [1]

We have clearly shown that a child has a need to observe, to reflect, to learn, to concentrate, to isolate himself, and also from time to time to suspend his activities in silence. And we have done this so clearly that we can say with all confidence that the idea that a small child is in a state of rest when he is outside a place suited for his education is erroneous. Rather, it is our duty to direct a child’s activities, sparing him unless efforts which would dissipate his energies, divert his instinctive search for knowledge, and be a frequent cause of nervous disorders and hindrance to his growth.

The education of even a very small child, therefore, does not aim at preparing him for school but for life – Maria Montessori