Posts

Montessori Philosophy: Individual Ownership of Learning

When parents are choosing Montessori education for their child, they are trusting their child to take his learning into his own hands. The environment is designed to allow students to discover and learn on their own. The materials are self-correcting and are used until the child says, “I did it.” This type of learning is very different from traditional learning. In a traditional learning environments, information is housed with the teacher. The teacher instructs the child what is important to learn and through rote effort, the child memorizes the information. To confirm that the student learned the information necessary, the student takes a written test. Weeks later, though, students have often forgotten or have a diminished memory of what they were taught. In the Montessori environment, children discover the answers themselves, so information and learning is housed within them. They may then draw connections between the newly learned information and other topics and events in their lives.

This article on mariamontessori.com highlights one family’s experience with individual ownership of learning. In seeing their son Wyatt’s newly developed writing skills, his parents questioned, “Who taught Wyatt how to write?” Wyatt’s response: “I did.”

Montessori and Education Reform

Education reform is a consistent topic of debate in local communities and the nation at large.

In her article, Montessori: The Missing Voice in the Education Reform Debate, Laura Flores Shaw, Head of School at Oak Knoll Kinderhaus Montessori, gives a thorough overview of the potential of Montessori as an answer.

I can tell you that the solutions we are all looking for are both simpler and more radical than the noisy debaters would have you believe. We need to do more than reform education. We need to transform it.
– Laura Flores Shaw