The Montessori classroom can sometimes be shrouded in mystery. What exactly do children do there all day, and how is it different than other learning environments?
One unique aspect of a Montessori school is the way adults and teachers interact with children. It’s no mystery that adults approach children in a uniform and respectful manner, using tried and true techniques.
It also shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that you’re incorporating plenty of these techniques at home with your children! Here are 5 ‘Montessori’ habits that you probably already have:
1. Speaking at eye level.
Kneeling down to speak to your child at eye level is one of the first habits a Montessori teacher develops. You’re most likely doing this with your children as well! Getting down, eye-to-eye, lets a child know that you’re listening, that what they have to say matters, and that you respect them!
2. Designing spaces for a child’s height.
Imagine living in a world where everything is way too high to reach and way too big for your body. Children are challenged every day by our adult sized world! You’re probably already implementing the Montessori trick of putting clothes, toys, and outdoor gear on low shelves, so your child can access them independently!
3. Sitting on your hands
A key trait in a Montessori guide, and one that you probably possess as well, is the ability to sit on your hands when your child is working on something. As parents and adults, we tend to jump in to help, even when a child doesn’t need us, and this is detrimental to their confidence and independence. So keep sitting on your hands to allow your child to work on tasks alone!
4. Reading books together
Reading as a group is an integral activity in the classroom schedule, and most likely an important part of your daily routine at home as well. Wherever it happens, keep reading together! Children love it, it inspires a fondness for reading and literacy, and it’s great quiet time at the end of a busy day.
5. Following their interests
Lastly, an important aspect to the Montessori classroom and something you’re probably doing at home is following your child’s interests. This doesn’t mean giving in to every whim or desire. It means taking keen notice of your child’s curiosity and helping them learn and grow according to those interests. It changes often, so be on your toes for the next childhood obsession!
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