frequently asked questions
Most educators and psychologists today agree that the single most important period in the development of a person’s intellige nce occurs between birth and age five. A child’s mind is extremely absorbent and his curiosity is at a peak during these early years. When properly nourished and stimulated the child ’s mind forms patterns for learning that serve him well throughout this life. The Montessori system of preschool education has proven to be one of the most effective and fastest gro wing methods to guide a child through these critical years.
Day Care Centers are generally for the purpose of caring for children on an all-day basis. Nursery Schools are generally experiences in socialization and play. Preschools are oriented toward educational experiences combined with socialization and play.
In most preschools the children are taught educational concepts in a group by a teacher. In a Montessori Preschool the children learn concepts spontaneously as they work independently with the many materials in their environment.
The Montessori Method of Education is basically a unique approach to learning. Rather than “teaching” the child concepts, an environment is designed to stimulate the child’s interest and facilitate his understanding and learning capacities spontaneously –with little or no adult intervention.
The main purpose of the Montessori Method is to develop an environment where the child can unfold spontaneously and manifest the greater person within. According to Maria Montessori “the child is the father of the man.” As the child begins to develop this inner self, his love of life and learnin g expands continuously.
Dr. Maria Montessori, over 70 years ago, was Italy’s first female medical doctor. Using her scientific background, she began observing children in the children’s houses of Rome. Based on her unbiased observations she developed unique materials, a child-centered environment, and was one of the first persons to revolutionize educational thought by stressing respect for the child, freedom of expression, self-education, and training through use of movement and the senses.
The Montessori classroom is a child-size world. Whatever is in the world outside can be incorporated meaningfully in the Montess ori classroom. To a child, the world is unmanageable – it is too big, too complex and too confusing. By careful selection of materials by the Directress, an environment is set up that allows the child to explore life in a level he can understand. The materials or exercises are designed to stimulate independent exploration. This prepared environment entices the child to proceed at this own pace from simple activities to more complex ones. Through this process, the child’s natural curiosity is satisfied and he begins to experience the joy of discovering the world about him. Materials are curriculum center on Practical Life, Sensorial, Language, Math, Geography, Science, Art, Music, Drams, and Dance.
As the children develop their sense of pride in their “work” a feeling of confidence, well being, and joy begins to manifest itself in the child. A “new child” is born. A classroom of Montessori children is a joy to watch. There seems to be a spirit of respect, love, and cooperation among the children that is not found too often.
The Montessori teacher is called a directress because she facilitates the classroom activity. She carefully plans the environment in the interests of the children and she helps the children.

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