Well, this is my first foray into blogging, so please forgive me if things come across as rehashed or hackneyed. I promise to keep the clichés to a minimum…
One thing which has always impressed me about the strength of the Montessori education is the philosophy of encouraging students to develop the joy of learning, so as to facilitate their educational growth, and eventual incorporation as contributing members to society. In truth, we know that some educational objectives will be more appealing than others, but we hope that the overall effect will be to accumulate a sufficient fund of knowledge to help them make well informed decisions later in life.
That’s all well and good, but what really got my attention the other day was my daughter’s attempt to hold ‘classes’ for her younger siblings!
She actually created a curriculum of topics to cover, charts to document their progress, and actual ‘jobs’ to help reinforce the lessons to her brothers. During her ‘lessons’, she used phraseology such as ‘eyes on me!’ and ‘how did you come up with that answer?’, in addition to enforcing the seating arrangement, and setting up rules for classroom behavior.
What was most interesting was her constant attempts to get her brothers to arrive at the ‘correct answers’. She was mostly encouraging, and despite her brothers’ inability to grasp the more ‘complex’ ideas, didn’t loser her temper and instead took the time to try and explain things to them. She would even smile on occasion!
Being that they were only 4 years old, I knew that this would eventually lead to frustration on her part, and would itself become a potential ‘teachable moment’ for her. But that’s a whole different story…
The take home message I got from watching this?
I think she’s trying to make learning a positive experience for her brothers, similar to what she is currently seeing in class. Positivity begets positivity, and that’s a positive thing.