Montessori education is based on a deep respect for the child, whom it considers as a single and unique human being, a being with great potential to develop, eager to learn, and a provider of great teachings for the adult.
THE PREPARED ENVIRONMENT
The Prepared Montessori Environment is an environment rich in stimuli that foments the child’s sensory exploration of his/her world, the movement that guides him/her towards his/her adaptation and independence, and such interest that stimulates the development of his/her will.
This Prepared Environment provides to the child a warm and welcoming atmosphere with ample and bright spaces, where everything is within his/her reach to strengthen his/her independence and the active social interaction that foments the concentration of his/her attention.
Children learn abstract concepts through the concrete and tangible handling of Montessori material.
Each material presents clearly and in isolation one concept or idea at a time and offers the possibility to control the error. This feature gives the child the opportunity to explore the knowledge without adult interruption, taking the child to an internalization of learning and the concentration of his/her attention.
The conformation of the environments with children of three different ages in each group recreates the experience of a community where the older children face challenges according to their level of development and help the younger in the face of any difficulty.
Throughout their stay in each environment, the children have the opportunity to live these social roles. This experience, in addition to helping the socio-affective development of the child, provides a balance between independence and cooperation that also creates an atmosphere of order and harmony.
THE PREPARED ADULT
The adult, aware of the child’s potential and his/her need for freedom, to move around and experiment in the environment, takes the role of “guide”, i.e., of a link between the child and the Prepared Environment. His/her main role is to be a facilitator of learning, helping the child to achieve self-discovery and independence within an environment of respect.
The Montessori Guide has earned a Montessori certification in addition to his/her training in education. One of the hallmarks of his/her Montessori specialization is the development of the ability to identify the sensitive periods, individual interests and needs of each child, allowing him/her to help the latter in a personalized way and at his/her own pace.
In addition to transmitting knowledge, the Guide has the function of teaching students through the Montessori approach:
• To accompany the pupil on the path to self-development, awakening his/her interest and imagination.
• To encourage his/her natural desire for independence.
• To strengthen his/her self-esteem.
• To develop self-discipline, as well as kindness and courtesy.
• To guide the child to learn to observe.
• To motivate his/her interest in culture and science.
• To understand that any unnecessary aid is an obstacle to the child’s development.