Who / What is Montessori?
Dr. Maria Montessori developed the Montessori Method. Being a doctor, she had a scientific approach to education, based on observation and experimentation.
According to Montessori that no human being can be educated by another. He must do it himself or it will never be done. Therefore, the goal of early childhood education should not be to fill the child with facts from pre-selected course of studies, but rather to cultivate his own natural desire to learn. The educator’s job therefore is to serve the child; and to facilitate the natural process of learning.
Dr. Maria Montessori conducted training courses in various countries all over the world including India. She lived in India with her son from 1939-1949 conducting several courses in various cities. Many eminent Indians like Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore, Dr. S Radhakrishnan and Annie Besant were keenly interested in the Montessori approach of education.
The Montessori is a three-year cycle is a fundamental element of Montessori education with the entry when the child is around 2½ - 3½ years of age. The child remains in the same classroom for three years and completing 3 years in Montessori environment, the children will move to Grade 1. For optimal benefit from the programme, we highly recommend that the children complete the entire three years.
The entire programme of learning is purposefully structured. It has been observed modern psychologists that there are periods of intense fascination for learning a particular skill such as putting things in order, going up and down steps, counting or reading. It is easier for the child to learn a particular skill during the corresponding period than at any time in his life. The Montessori classroom takes advantage of this fact by allowing the child freedom to select individual activities which correspond to his periods of interest.
Individual activity is the one factor that stimulates and produces development in children and the equipment he uses will help in developing concentration, co-ordination and work habits necessary for the advanced learning.
In the Montessori environment the child is allowed to experience the excitement of learning by offering him choice. By pursuing his individual interest, the child gains an early enthusiasm for learning, which is the key to becoming a truly educated person. In Montessori environments, it is seen that children respond positively to an atmosphere of calm and order and that they are capable of responsible behaviour and have a love for work.