Montessori‚Ä¶ Schooling fit for a king!
On January 6th 2016, little Prince George (the son of Prince William and Duchess Kate) started his first day at his new nursery school. The two-year old began his learning journey at Westacre Montessori School, in Norfolk. There are around 700 Montessori schools and Nurseries around the UK. If you are unsure of what a Montessori school is, here is a definition that I found on the internet‚Ä¶
The Montessori Method of education, developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, is a child-centered educational approach based on scientific observations of children from birth to adulthood. Dr. Montessori’s Method has been time tested, with over 100 years of success in diverse cultures throughout the world.
Ironically the very first Montessori school was opened on the 6th January 1907, 109 years ago to the day that Prince George started. Montessori schools started operating in the UK between 1924-1925, and in 1946, the Montessori St Nicholas training centre was founded. But what is the difference between a Montessori school and a traditional school? I followed the official Montessori.org.UK website to find out, and here is what I found‚Ä¶
What is the difference between Montessori and traditional methods of teaching?
In Montessori schools the child is seen as a dynamic learner, full of creative potential and in need of the maximum possible freedom to be allowed to develop as a happy, confident individual. Montessori schools therefore place emphasis on the importance of process. In more traditional schools children are seen to be in need of more active instruction and control from adults ‚Äì there is less trust in the child‚Äôs own inner abilities and more emphasis on ensuring very defined results. So Montessori schools are learner-centred, whereas traditional schools tend to be more teacher-centred.
This led me on to the next question of how behaviour management is used within this learning environment. How do the teachers deal with misbehaving children? Again, I followed the official Montessori.org.UK website and here are the results‚Ä¶
How is discipline dealt with in a Montessori school?
Montessori schools believe that discipline is something that should come from inside rather than something that is always imposed by others. They do not rely on rewards and punishments. By being allowed to be free in the environment, and learning to love and care for other people, the child develops confidence and control over his own behaviour. So Montessori teachers only step in when a child‚Äôs behaviour is upsetting or disruptive to others. And then the child will be handled with deep respect and sensitivity. The belief is that the children are by nature loving and caring, and the emphasis is on helping them develop the vital social and emotional skills needed for participating in true community.
Montessori methods of teaching are used throughout the key stages and are a different approach to traditional ways of teaching. If you would like to discover more on the ever growing sensation of Montessori methods of teaching, or if you have more burning questions that you would like to know, simply follow the blue link above to enter the official UK website.
What are your views on Montessori teaching? Why not let us know at 1st Note Education by leaving your thoughts and opinions.