Dr. Maria Montessori

Montessori is a philosophy and method of education prescribed by Dr. Maria Montessori in the early part of the 20th century.

Her philosophy emphasizes that all humans have an inner guide or an inner intelligence that propels growth and guides individual development.

This intrinsic force works towards the full manifestation of potential of the child in all areas of development – social, intellectual, emotional, moral, spiritual and physical by utilizing teaching materials, a prepared environment and trained Montessori teachers.

Learning through the Montessori philosophy and method of teaching whilst also the many benefits and facilities of a wonderful state-funded school provides students of ESMPS with a rich and enticing learning environment.

The teacher

Maria Montessori recognized that children have a natural curiosity and desire to learn. The method of education was designed to awaken this desire, appeal to the child’s imagination and channel the natural curiosity.

The role of the teacher is to awaken the child’s curiosity, foster a love of learning and to guide, assist, encourage and support each child as he or she works through the programme at the child’s own pace, making independent decisions and choices.

Teachers are trained specifically to follow the child’s progress and interests, considering each child’s style of learning, and to present the appropriate Montessori material and lessons particular to the child’s academic and developmental needs.

Having the same teacher for three years, where possible, allows for discovery of strengths and weaknesses, the building of strong relationships and intimate knowledge of the child.

The prepared environment

The prepared environment is a Montessori concept. It physically embodies the curriculum. It is designed to maximize independent learning and exploration. Shelves hold the sequences of study in physical order which remains static and anchors the curriculum concepts. The Montessori materials isolate difficulties and have in-built, self-correcting controls of error.

The non-competitive class is composed of children of mixed ages, cultures, abilities and interests. Co-operative social interaction among children of different ages provides younger children with models for imitation and older children with opportunities to reinforce their knowledge and experience leadership roles by helping others.

As well as providing a balanced social group, mixed age groups promote the individuality of learning, progression at the child’s own pace, and more group options relative to ability and interest.

Educating for peace

Preventing conflicts is the work of politics; establishing peace is the work of education.”

Maria Montessori was a great advocate for world peace. The underlying value within a Montessori community is respect – respect for oneself, for all of humanity and the environment. This value is strongly promoted in the Montessori classroom. As each child’s needs are met, he or she is expected to give and receive respect in the class, home and community and ultimately into adulthood. The goal of peace is fundamental to the whole Montessori philosophy.