I attended a Montessori explained talk recently which I really enjoyed. Even though I have been to Montessori talks before, have read many books on this topic, have done a tone of research, did some study (for the 3-6 years) and have two children in this schooling system, there is always something new to learn.
Having two children in Children’s House (3-6 years) and one of them transitioning to Cycle Two (6-9 years), I felt like I needed to go over some of the basics and hope to gain some more insight into the second plane of development and how as a parent I can be better prepared to help support both of my children during their developmental stages.
After an initial meet and greet, the main areas that were covered was;
- A brief History on Maria Montessori and what her educational method (education of the whole child) is all about. Here is a link to a Biography of Dr Maria Montessori.
- Covered some basic Montessori terminology- absorbent mind, sensitive periods, control of error, grace and courtesy, human tendencies, cycle of activity, prepared environment for example. AMI Glossary of Montessori terms and their meanings.
- The Four planes of Development and each one described in detail.
- Difference between traditional schools and Montessori schools. We watched a YouTube video (see link below) which explains this in more detail.
Planes of Development;
- 0-6 Early Childhood- Construction of the Physical Person- (The Absorbent Mind)
- 6-12- Childhood- Construction of the Intelligence
- 12-18- Adolescence- Construction of Social Self
- 18-24- Adulthood- Construction of Self Understanding
I received the book Montessori Madness by Trevor Eissler to take home and read through and we also watched a really interesting YouTube video by the same author- Montessori Madness which is worthwhile taking a look at. This was the first time I have heard of this book. My first Montessori books I read were;
- Montessori From the Start- by Paula Polk Lillard and Lynn Lillard Jessen (covers Birth to age three)
- The Joyful Child- by Susan Mayclin Stephenson (covers birth to age three)
- Child of the World- by Susan Mayclin Stephenson (covers 3-12 years)
- Watching Our Kids Grow
- Should We Homeschool
- The Factory Model of Education
- An Unexpected Option
- A Home. A School.
- Why I Am Convinced by the Method
- The Sensitive Periods
- The Absorbent Mind
- The Prepared Environment
- A Comfort with Error
- The Fear of Error
- Controlling Error in Real-time
- The Guide
- The Community
- A Walk with Montessori
Some things to ponder on;
- Get to know your child (observe)– resilience, strengths, challenges, independence, learning style, interactions with others, friendships, interests etc
- Be a good role model (watch what you say and do in front of your children)
- Familiarise yourself with the 4 planes of development and if you have a child under six years of age look at sensitive periods, the absorbent mind and the prepared environment including the importance of sense of order at home.
- Look at ways to help support independence in all areas of the home.
Do you have a favourite Montessori book? Can you recommend a book that covers the Second Plane of development?