The Montessori Environment
“The first aim of the prepared environment is, as far as it is possible, to render the growing child independent of the adult.”
– Maria Montessori
The Montessori classroom is called a prepared environment because it is specially prepared, with love and care for the child. It is aesthetically pleasing, welcoming and conducive to learning. Children can access and use materials easily because shelves and furniture are made as per their size and materials displayed within reach. The environment emanates order, cleanliness and beauty, allowing for concentration, reflection and calm. Plants are cared for, and fresh flowers arranged, by the children. The environment facilitates movement and activity harmoniously.
The outdoor environment is equally important. Apart from being a place where children can develop their gross motor skills as they play, climb, explore, or make discoveries in the sandpit, it is an extension of the learning in the indoor environment. Planting vegetables, watching them grow, and then using them for a community snack; observing butterflies or the textures and colours of nature, all enhance learning.
The ‘adult’ or teacher is integral to the environment. He/she guides the energies of the children and assists them to connect with the work they need to do to fulfill their development. Their role is not to teach but to facilitate meaningful learning.
Exercises/Activities of Practical Life – Life skills
‘I can do it myself!’
Our world is a Sensorial world
“To teach a child whose senses have been developed is quite a different thing from teaching one who has not had this help.”
– Maria Montessori
The world of Numbers
Numbers are the clue to the nature of the universe and the mystery of beauty.
Understanding, using and enjoying language is the critical first step in communication.
Connectivity, Creativity, Culture
All knowledge is connected and making connections brings added meaning to the excitement of learning and discovery. History, Geography, Science, Maths and Language are intricately woven together, and knowledge therefore becomes one.