The Montessori Classroom: Enrich Your Community and Works with a Digital Camera
Dr. Montessori emphasized the importance of conducting student observations in the Montessori environment. Sitting quietly and writing down what the children are doing and how they are progressing is an important part of the daily tasks of any Montessori teacher. This can be difficult when there are so many individualized lessons to present. The use of a digital camera can help you record the daily activities of your classroom. This can assist you when writing up your individual observations, conference reports, end of year reports, and even classroom newsletters. Here are some suggestions of events and activities to document with your camera:
- The first and last day of school each year to add to each child’s portfolio
- Daily works the children are using
- Field trips
- Guest speakers
- Special classroom events such as an open house
- Activities on the playground
- Classroom dramas, songfests, cooking, or large science demonstrations
- Oral reports
- Working in the garden
- Community service
Digital cameras can also be used to create materials for your Montessori environment. Some ideas include:
- Making nomenclature (3-part) cards
- Creating/enhancing timelines
- Documenting difficult layouts or works with multiples steps
- Creating a series of pictures for learning sequencing
- Printing a class picture on iron-on paper and make class t-shirts (great for wearing on field trips!)
- Allowing students to use the camera to document nature and thematic walks
- Assigning the job of Class Photographer to a different student each week. Invite the students to document learning in action and use it their/your newsletter.
The possibilities of how you can use a digital camera in your Montessori classroom are endless. If you use a digital camera in your Montessori environment, we would love to hear from you!
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.