What is Montessori Education?
Maria Montessori said, “…education is not something which the teacher does, but…it is a natural process which develops spontaneously in the human being. It is not acquired by listening to words but in the virtue of experiences in which the child acts on his environment. The teacher’s task is not to talk, but to prepare and arrange a series of motives for cultural activity in a special environment made for the child.”
Montessori education is a living, concrete form of education that is, at its core, the belief that:
- The world of knowledge is limitless for a child – they need only the ability to access it. Their mode of access is through the senses – concrete learning which allows them to physically experience their knowledge.
- Children have a never-ending curiosity, which, when fostered, evolves into a love of learning, and a strong sense of self.
- Education is a secondary step to appreciation. When children learn to appreciate themselves, others, and their environment, they develop awe and curiosity for their world, a thirst for knowledge, which translates to a love of learning.
- Appreciation for others reaches beyond tolerance. Children can break through barriers of apathy and prejudice, by experiencing the culture of the world within their classroom. Developing an understanding of others unlike themselves paves the way for education for peace.
The Philosophy of Hamilton Montessori School
- Inclusion: We have a curriculum of support, which teaches that families of all compositions are valued.
- Anti-bias Curriculum: We protect the personal values of families by not celebrating holidays, but celebrating cultural and seasonal events.
- Non-Violence in Language and Action: We discourage ‘characters’ and ‘superheroes’ in play and clothing. We take time to teach peaceful resolution skills.
- Partnership: The success of a child depends on the ‘village’ philosophy. Parents and the school must be an active community together.