#3 Prepared Classroom Environment and Montessori Materials
"The absorbent mind welcomes everything, puts its hope in everything, accepts poverty equally with wealth, adopts any religion and the prejudices and habits of its countrymen, incarnating all in itself. This is the child.” Dr. Montessori
The absorbent mind welcomes everything, puts its hope in everything, accepts poverty equally with wealth, adopts any religion and the prejudices and habits of its countrymen, incarnating all in itself. This is the child.
Third teacher: Dr. Montessori believed that a prepared environment is a third teacher. She believed that during these early years of the first plane of development (0-6 years), your child’s personality is being formed because of their social relationships and environments. Meaning that the primary role of the teacher is to construct an environment that promotes motivation, experimentation, curiosity, and social relationships often blending in with the children. As a result, children learn to respect themselves, others, and their environment. Our Children’s House classrooms encourage freedom of movement, allow for choice, provide comfort and are child sized. They are rich in materials for exploration and discovery.
The Absorbent mind: Dr. Montessori believed that this is the time that a child’s own sense of self begins to emerge. She identified six sensitive periods during this time where children are innately focused and have a special aptitude for developing a particular skill or knowledge area. The sensitive periods are order, language, coordination of movement, sensory development, interest in small objects, and concepts related to math and music. Our prepared environments promote growth in each of these areas utilizing hands-on materials that are as motivating as they are beautiful.
Power of observation: Our teachers are always watching, observing, and documenting; sometimes informally and sometimes formally to establish individual learning goals for your child. We utilize a developmental screener to better understand where your child is developmentally and share this with you. We use all this information to guide and adjust what materials and experiences are necessary to promote your child’s optimal growth. This information is readily available to you in real-time through our use of Transparent Classroom, an electronic portfolio that documents your child’s progress over time.