For parents who are new to the idea that there are other options for a child’s education besides public school, knowing how to prepare their children for the classroom may not seem as clear. In a Montessori classroom, the focus of learning will look quite differently than that of a traditional classroom. Knowing how to set your child up for success in a Montessori program starts with fully understanding the method of Montessori and implementing a few simple ideas in the home to prepare your child for their first day in class.
Understanding the method
Maria Montessori observed how children naturally learn through play. She took the concept that an orderly environment gives a student peace and the ability to concentrate on an individual task and combined it with allowing a child’s natural curiosity to drive their interest in learning. Choice plays an important role in a Montessori classroom. Allowing a child’s education to be interest-led will give your child a sense of ownership and independence while keeping them interested in what they are doing. While there are multiple stations for your child to explore, they can determine how long they will stay at each task before moving to a new one. This is where the Montessori method of order comes in. Students must put away everything into its proper place before moving on to a new station. A Montessori classroom should look at the end of the day exactly the way it did at the beginning.
Establishing routine while learning helpful tasks
Taking the Montessori method out of the classroom and implementing it at home will be a huge benefit for yourself and your child. Not only will it help get your child ready for a Montessori classroom, the method of order and pressure-free learning will create a peaceful environment at home as well. Most people have a natural routine when they are at home, even if they haven’t intentionally created it or have a schedule hanging on the fridge. Think about how your day goes with your child. Cultivating this routine will allow you to see spaces in your day to give your child learning opportunities.
Organize your child’s room so that they can have access to different activities and toys, but be sure to explain that only one thing can be played with at a time. Being present in the room during playtimes will help establish this idea in your child.
Creating a learning environment in other places in the house like the kitchen can help your child learn useful tasks while making them beam with confidence that they helped you with dinner or cleaning. Tasks like:
- Wiping windows
- Peeling carrots
- Sorting beans
- Wiping down tables
- Setting the table
These are all ways your young child can feel like they are contributing to the home. By understanding the method behind a Montessori education and implementing the ideas in your home home will help your child adjust well when it is time to start school.
If you are wanting to enroll your child in a Montesssori school in the Bay Area, Fountainhead Montessori School has multiple campuses in the area. Give Fountainhead Montessori School a call to set up an observational appointment at a campus near you.