The Classical Roots of Montessori Education

The Classical Roots of Montessori Education

Published: 28 MAR 2023

Updated: 28 MAR 2023

Categories:Learning Philosophies

The Classical Roots of Montessori Education

The History of Montessori

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, Maria Montessori, an Italian educator and medical doctor, devoted her research to understanding how young children acquire knowledge. Her discoveries led to a novel approach to early childhood education, which has had a significant impact on daycare centers, preschools, and homes worldwide. This article delves deeper into the Montessori philosophy of learning, examines how families incorporate her methods into their homeschooling, and provides guidance on how provide a Montessori-style homeschool program.

What is the Montessori Method?

The Montessori method of teaching young children is centered around the child and recognizes their individuality. It encourages creativity and inquisitiveness, which fosters a love of learning. A crucial aim of this approach is to promote self-regulation, which means a child can control their behavior in any given circumstance. The Montessori philosophy sees a child's classroom as a training ground for life's lessons.

Characteristics of a Montessori Education

A Montessori education is marked by a number of key features, including:

  • Classrooms containing students of varying ages
  • A focus on cooperation and collaboration among pupils
  • Learning with the use of hands-on techniques, and active teaching methods

Additionally, educators act as role models for the values and behaviors they hope to instill in their students and view themselves as facilitators rather than traditional instructors. Respect for each child's unique learning style is also emphasized, along with the freedom for children to choose their preferred learning activities. Positive behavior and conflict resolution are carefully guided, while connections between traditional subjects such as math, science, history, and language arts are highlighted to help students understand their interrelatedness.

While the Montessori methods were originally developed for classroom use, many families have recognized that teaching Montessori in the home has a wide range of benefits, too. By creating an environment that aligns with Dr. Montessori’s philosophies, parents can encourage a love of learning right within the walls of their own home.

Montessori and Homeschool

The Montessori approach promotes creativity and curiosity, which leads to a passion for learning. Self-regulation is a key goal, allowing children to control their behavior in any situation. The Montessori philosophy views the classroom as a place to learn life lessons and includes features such as mixed-age classrooms, collaboration, hands-on learning, and active teaching methods.

Teachers act as role models and facilitators, emphasizing respect for individual learning styles and freedom of choice. Positive behavior and conflict resolution are emphasized, and connections between subjects are highlighted. Montessori methods can also be applied at home, creating an environment that encourages learning through display of books, educational toys, and learning materials readily available. Anything that promotes active learning aligns with Montessori principles.

Most Montessori homeschool curricula consist mainly of suggestions rather than a complete program, as Montessori is not a rigid system but rather a guiding philosophy. Thus, parents have the flexibility to create their own Montessori curriculum using various materials and resources. These tools are easily accessible and affordable, with several DIY options such as creating sandpaper letters or utilizing nuts and bolts to develop fine motor skills.

Happy homeschooling!