In the previous article, we came to understand the principles of the Montessori pedagogy as well as its origins. If you have not yet read this article, we advise you to read it prior to this one.
The greatest advantage of the Montessori method is that it can easily be adapted to the daily lives of both, parents and children. It is suitable to be used at home and/or in learning facilities. In fact, more and more learning facilities are using this method and seeing extremely positive results.
The goal of the Montessori methodology is to promote the development of your child’s abilities in order to help them maximize their freedom and independence.
Montessori believes in the importance of children adopting a sense of independence and self-confidence as this will help them to succeed in the future.
In this article, we are providing tips to helping your child develop and grow in an environment that is conductive to learning.
Organizing the environment
The Montessori method is based on the organization of the environment, which should be fully adapted to your child’s height. In most cases, spaces are designed for adults, which makes it harder for the child to feel included throughout certain activities. Having an environment that is adapted to your child encourages them to participate and interact.
For example, hang hooks at their height to allow them to hang their clothes by themselves. Have stepping stools to allow them to reach higher surfaces, such as kitchen or bathroom counters. You may also have furniture at their height where they can sit with an evolutionary high chair. These adaptations will allow them to help with the preparation of dinner, for example, or even wash their hands without needing the help of an adult. In the end, these various adjustments help your child develop and become independent.
He/she will be able to learn to use everyday objects safely while becoming who they are meant to be. By involving your children in your daily activities, you are showing them to take pleasure in participating in simple tasks such as sweeping the floor or even cooking with mom and dad. Montessori is much more than an educational method; it is a philosophy and way of life that helps your child take control of his desires and interests in order to achieve their freedom.
This approach is also known to helping expand creativity levels by stimulating your senses. For example, by cooking with your children, they learn that food does not all have the same smell, texture, taste or method of preparation. They might, therefore, choose their favourites according to their taste, colour or smell. This type of learning can easily be adapted to your child’s everyday life!
Making the rooms welcoming and conducive to learning
To encourage creativity, the Montessori method suggests light-coloured pieces in which everything is organized and has its place. We recommend having a shelf with only two or three toys, instead of a full chest of toys.
A small reading corner can also be a good idea. You may have shelves, drawers or bins adapted to their height. Remember to teach your children the importance of putting their book away when they are finished with the activity.
We also suggest putting a single bed on the floor for his first year of life (as soon as he can turn by himself). This way, instead of being stuck behind bars, your child will be able to get in and out of bed alone and safely. No more yelling when he/she wants to get out. According to Montessori, children are perfectly capable of listening to their needs and moving around as they wish.
The role of the adult in Montessori pedagogy
Adults play a key role in child development. With this said, we want to encourage the guardian to guide the child rather than to impose. Through playing, they will learn to open/close drawers, help with dishes, tie their shoes, cut their vegetables for their snack, etc. All you need to do; is take a little time to teach your child that they can also do “adult” things considering they are in a supervised and safe environment.
The important thing is to focus on what is allowed and what is not. This way of teaching will help develop self-confidence and encourage them to become as independent as possible. Implementing a routine is also an effective way to promote learning. The repetition of small everyday tasks helps them become more and more independent because they know what is expected. They will feel valued and happy to be able to do the same things as grown-ups. As we all know, children love to imitate others’ behaviours. After all, It is their way of learning.
Allow your child to make mistakes. They will start to understand the consequences of their mistakes, helping them make better decisions next time around. This way, they will be able to develop their problem-solving skills instead of developing a fear of making mistakes. While it is true that this method focuses on the independence of your child, it also allows them to be disciplined through basic rules put in place by the adult. For example, at the end of an activity, they will know that they must put things back in their appropriate place in order to keep the play area clean and tidy.
This helps children develop a sense of discipline and self-control. Two essential life skills! Visit kimboo.ca and learn more about the many fun games that can help you create a Montessori environment at home.