We continue sharing advices about starting using the Montessori method at home (Please read part 1
also). I asked wonderful Montessorians about what they think a person should do first if the person wants to start practicing Montessori at home.
Please read all the advices carefully, make notes and decide at least one of them to start using.
I think all of them will give you a clearer understanding of what you need to do and show you the right direction.
Matt Bronsil: “I think a good piece of advice to start is to set up a space for the child to do something specific and create a small environment there. For example, set a desk that is just for art and have an art shelf. Set it up like a Montessori art shelf and let the child begin with that. After that, start to branch out and make it bigger. If you start too big in the beginning, you’ll be worn out“
I grew up in Montessori. I was brought into my parents’ classroom as an infant and am now a Montessori 3-6 Teacher in Taiwan. Please visit me at http://www.MontessoriWebinars.com
Vanessa Thiel: “I believe the place to start is preparing oneself with research and reading the works of Maria Montessori. The next step is setting up the environment and the place to start is with practical life skills. That is the easiest place to begin because Montessori is not just the materials, it is a way of life. A new way of thinking.“
I’m a Montessori stay-at-home mom who is homeschooling my preschooler. I’m also a Pediatric RN and an IBCLC (Lactation Consultant.) Please visit me at http://www.mamashappyhive.com
Deb Chitwood, M.A.: “Preparing yourself would always be the most important place to start. Dr. Montessori said: “It is not enough for the teacher to love the child. She must first love and understand the universe. She must prepare herself, and truly work at it.” I think that applies to parents (the child’s first and most important teachers) as well as to classroom teachers. That said, I think it’s natural to start preparing the environment as soon as possible, too.“
I have my master’s degree in early childhood studies, and I’m a former Montessori teacher, school owner, and administrator. I was also a Montessori homeschooler and homeschooled my now-adult children through high school. Please visit me at http://livingmontessorinow.com
Jae Espuerta: “Preparing of self and the environment”
I’m a homeschooler teaching my kids through Montessori methods. Please visit me at www.pinayhomeschooler.com
Simone Davies: “I would suggest looking at ways to include your child in daily life. I love to have the kids help me in the kitchen, get ready for visitors, help in the garden and spend time together. It can take longer at first, but you will be helping your child scaffold skills as they experience these parts of daily life with you.“
Simone has been working in Montessori since 2004. She is a trained AMI teacher who runs parent-child Montessori classes in Amsterdam at Jacaranda Tree Montessori and has two children who have attended Montessori school through primary school. Please visit me at http://www.themontessorinotebook.com
Kelly Johnson: “Preparing yourself. Take a month or more to immerse yourself in reading Montessori’s philosophy, learning the basics of the method, double check in with experienced Montessorians, in person or online, to make sure you are interpreting what you are reading correctly, and then carefully plan how you will apply and implement the method and philosophy into your environment.
For example one may read “follow the child” and allow the child to not brush their teeth or hair because the child doesn’t want to, but they are actually misinterpreting the meaning due to lack of knowledge in the philosophy and method, not realizing that the freedom to follow the child comes from defined limits and expectations in the child’s environment.“
I am trained AMS 6-9 and have been a Montessorian since 2000 in many capacities, from art and music teacher to toddler assistant to garden coordinator to substitute to lower elementary lead teacher. I find immense joy in the method and philosophy because I see how holistically amazing it is for children, and I adore the aesthetic preparation of the adults and environment. Please visit me at http://www.wingswormsandwonder.com
Lolly Kent: “I would say the best starting place is with the self. In preparing yourself and reflecting on why you want to pursue the Montessori philosophy you will have the foundation for making consistent choices as a parent. If you are clear in your intentions it will be easier to assist your child in their development. The rest will follow, because if we are aiding the child to become independent the limits, preparation of the environment, choosing the types and amount of toys, etc. will be a natural result of these choices.“
I am a Montessori teacher (6-12) and Montessori mum. I have several years experience in Montessori classrooms and currently tutor students using Montessori principles and materials. Please visit me at http://elementaryobservations.blogspot.com.au
Yuliya Chernikova: “In order to prepare oneself and the environment for the child, one has to know what principles to take into consideration and implement. So we are coming back to the necessity to educate ourselves first which opens limitless possibilities for the whole family.“
AMI trained teacher for the Primary level
Yang Jingyi Gabrielle: “It’s important to start with the environment. By taking small steps, rearrange or set up the home environment that promotes independence & movement for your child. One does not need to buy every Montessori toy or activity tray. It can be as simple as doing cardboard box toys, or letting your child feel empowered eg, brushing his teeth, getting a drink, making a snack. Limit toys to open ended ones like wooden blocks or legos. You can also do toy rotations to keep the child engaged“
About Yang Jingyi Gabrielle:
I used to be a preschool teacher before becoming a stay-home mum 5 years ago. It was also then I discovered about the Montessori method and has been adopting a Montessori lifestyle with my two boys. Please visit me at Coffeeandtoastmama.wordpress.com
Meghan Hicks: “Preparing the environment is helpful to set the right tone for the family, and the right frame of mind for the adults. Simplify things by culling unnecessary belongings, ensuring that everything you decide to keep has a place, and making conscious decisions about how to include your child in daily life. Think about every job you do in your home to maintain it, think about the tools you use to complete this work, think about how you can make these tools (or more child appropriate tools) available to your child“
I am trained in 0-12, I teach children from birth to age 16 in various settings, I lecture for two international Montessori teacher training institutes, I write about Montessori for families, I travel to schools around the world to help them refine their environments and their practices, I homeschool my own children.
Grace En-Tien Chang: “Regarding acquisition of items: Remember that if your child will be going to a Montessori school (3~6), it is not wise to have the same didactic materials at home. Offering it too early may be detrimental as well.
A lot of toys infants like to play with are easily home made. In fact, infants appear to like to play with items in the home more than commercial toys, for the most part.
The biggest challenge is not giving in to commercialism: Not becoming overwhelmed with all the activities and things to get out there, not trying to do everything, and nor putting things and activities over observation and routine – because every child is different and you will soon see that what someone else’s child loves will not necessarily attract your child – but be willing to experiment and enjoy! … a steady routine and familiarity for the 0~3 is key to child’s development of mental organization and confidence.
What you should invest in is your own education and growth. Get hard books on Montessori that go deep into the theory. If you don’t like reading, sign up for webinars or hire a Montessori coach! There are quite a few seasoned Montessori teachers consult virtually and they can serve as a great resource for you. Moreover, find a group of like-minded parents in your community and this will help so much in the process of personal transformation and growth!“
I have a BS in Biology, and have been an Montessori & brain science autodidact for the past 5 years. Have helped run a Montessori co-op and am currently undergoing my internship for my certificate at a Montessori 3~6 school in Taiwan. Please visit me at http://whenthediaperleaks.wordpress.com
Tamarah Rosenberg: “Look inward at yourself. There are amazing parents who do not have a single Montessori Material. Learn to follow your child and be prepared to treat them as you would your 80 year old great Aunt. Then read Montessori from the Start, The Child in the Family and The World of the Child. #1 DO NOT ALLOW TV or visual electronics until the child is 6″
I am unnatural Montessorian, my soul is loud and chaotic. Creating a peaceful place for my children brought peace to my soul.
I hope this will be useful for you. All the Montessorians were very passionate to share their knowledges. Have a wonderful Montessori Home!