If you're considering a Montessori education for your child, you're on the right track! Montessori education provides a wealth of benefits for children, from increased academic success to improved social skills. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of Montessori education and how it can benefit your child!
Increased Academic Success
Let's take a look at what exactly a Montessori education provides. In terms of the main idea, a Montessori education involves free activity within a "prepared environment". This gives children a sense of freedom and independence that they may not receive from other education systems. Now, you must be wondering, how does that affect academic success? Firstly, Montessori education systems allow individuality in children to prosper. This brings with it confidence and a sense of clarity. A lot of the time regular education systems create a rigorous and result-directed environment that can pressurise children into getting "good grades" rather than developing important skills through a variety of experiences. Secondly, Montessori education systems provide child-directed work with uninterrupted work periods under the supervision and guidance of trained Montessori teachers. This enables a thorough learning process which involves students to self-select work and work at their own pace with zero interruption. All of these qualities of the Montessori education system affect academic success positively, improving the ability of children to interpret and create data effectively.
Improved Social Skills
Another very interesting aspect of the Montessori education system is its feature of having multi-age classrooms. This builds connections and understanding between children of different age groups, anywhere between a 3-year-age gap span. Older children reinforce their knowledge by teaching concepts they have already learnt, which helps them develop leadership skills and serve as role models to the younger children. This, however, does not interfere with the pace at which children learn new things. Each child has a personalised working process which develops with cooperation between peers rather than through competition between peers. This in turn increases their ability to socialise with different age groups and improves their relation-building skills.
Montessori education systems provide work to children that engages them and increases their self-awareness. In other words, it enhances their ability to express their creativity. This system approves the choosing of meaningful and challenging work that increases motivation, attention, and a sense of responsibility to themselves and others. Not only is this the key to building creativity, but also to building confidence. This technique provides a sense of independence from the idea of doing what you are simply told to do. This actually makes you actively involved because it is work that you are truly interested in. Through this, creativity and self-awareness are developed. It is also very important to note that Montessori education systems encourage movement- something that a traditional classroom restricts- and give the children an opportunity to move around while they work. This reduces the static feeling a regular classroom involves and brings forth a new approach, a more creative approach, to the process of learning.
Improved Concentration and Focus
The technique of uninterrupted work periods is no joke. Not only does it improve focus by reducing the number of times a child is interrupted while working, it also sets a habit of working with full and undivided concentration, which may not be possible in a traditional classroom environment. AMS, or the American Montessori Society, a leading research forum and advocacy of the Montessori education system, says that there are recommended numbers of hours of uninterrupted work periods advisable for children of each age:
Infant & Toddler: At minimum, a daily 2-hour work cycle. The time block allows for adult-assisted mealtime, snacks, hygiene, and nap/rest routines.
Early Childhood: At minimum, a 2-hour work cycle, 4 days per week. A 3-hour uninterrupted work cycle, 5 days per week is optimal.
Elementary: At minimum, a 2-hour work cycle, 4 days per week. A 3-hour uninterrupted work cycle, 5 days per week is optimal.
Secondary: At minimum, a 2-hour work cycle for core curricular subjects (math, English, history or humanities, sciences, and additional world languages).
This information, derived from AMS' research, seems to show the methodical and planned technique and approach that Montessori education systems provide. These clearly indicate a higher focus on several subjects, for each of them have been allotted specific (uninterrupted) time periods and activities.
Montessori education systems promote "freedome within limits". Although limits are treated as classroom ground rules, they help children identify what one should and should not do in a particular setting. These limits enable freedom and understanding of what their activities are and how their activities will affect other students and the environment around them. These ground rules stand by one thing- children are allowed to use any material around them as long as it does not harm themseleves, others around them, or the environment. These restricitons are healthy and necessary for growing children to understand and realise. All this does is play another huge role in the development of independence and choice for each individual student.
A More Holistic Approach to Learning
Interdependence between subjects bringing the main idea forth is a concept that is of great regard in a Montessori education system. According to AMS (American Montessori Society), "Maria Montessori urged us to give children a “vision of the universe” to help them discover how all of its parts are interconnected and interdependent and to help them understand their place in society and the world. In Montessori schools, children in Elementary programs (between the ages of 6 – 12) learn about the creation of the universe through stories that integrate the studies of astronomy, chemistry, biology, geography, and history. These lessons help children become aware of their own roles and responsibilities as humans and as members of society, and help them explore their “cosmic task”—their unique, meaningful purpose in the world." This tells us how a Montessori education system provides a holistic approach to learning by making sure the children realise how each subject that is being taught is related in form or another to a different subject. Therefore, these are just some ways in which interdependence and creativity are encouraged in a Montessori education system.
Credits to respective sites- https://amshq.org