Thursday, September 30, 2010

Montessori Preschool Insights and Reflections on Independence

NAMC montessori preschool independence boy pouring beans This year long series looks at the experiences of teachers, parents, students, and Montessori education itself, as we follow a student through his first year at a Montessori Preschool. The Montessori Insights and Reflections of a Preschool Student’s First Year is a collection of useful stories, tips, and information that has arisen from one real student's Montessori journey, viewed through the eyes of his Montessori Teacher, Bree Von Nes.

Jordan’s Increasing Sense of Independence

It is great to see Jordan starting to take more of an interest in the Montessori Practical Life area. His comfort level in the classroom is increasing and he is beginning to relish in his new found sense of independence.

I presented the screwdriving work during our Montessori circle time and he was the first child to raise his hand to indicate he was ready to go to work.

Montessori Preschool Insights and Reflections on Independence

I called his name and he knew exactly what he wanted to do - he went straight to the shelf that housed the screwdriving work and removed it from the shelf. He worked with the activity for about 15 minutes and then carefully returned it to the shelf in the same spot he found it (without any reminder!)

Immediately after returning the screwdriving tray, he decided to try some of the pouring activities. He chose one with lentils and looked nervous about carrying the tray by himself. I stood back and simply observed the concentration on his face as he carried the tray from the shelf to a table. He was being so careful not to tilt the tray and was walking extremely slow and with intense purpose. When he reached the table, he said to one of his classmates, “I carried my tray so careful like a big teenager. Nothing spilled, not even one bean!”

It is wonderful to hear Jordan speak with such pride in his voice and so great to see him starting to busy himself with the Practical Life activities. He is still clearly more comfortable with the activities in the other areas of the Montessori classroom, but at least he is starting to choose ‘works’ from the Practical Life shelves and is doing so all by himself! I’m sure in the weeks to come, Jordan’s comfort level will increase even further.

The essence of independence is to be able to do something for one’s self. ~ Dr. Montessori
As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community.
© North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Thursday, September 30, 2010.

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