Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Dyscalculia and the Montessori Method

NAMC montessori method dyscalculia two students working together
Studies state that up to 7% of students are affected by dyscalculia
For many years, educators have been aware of children who have language difficulties or disorders. What many of us may not realize is that children may also have math disorders. In fact, the American Psychological Association classifies Dyscalculia as a math disorder in the DSM-IV (The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). Recent research suggests that up to 7% of students are affected by severe learning disabilities in math (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 2012).

Dyscalculia goes beyond math anxiety. Children with Dyscalculia may have difficulties with calculation, understanding mathematical concepts, application with word problems, mathematical language, or even with number and symbol recognition.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Wednesday, January 30, 2013.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Montessori Teacher Development: A Three Year Cycle

If you think that the three-year Montessori developmental cycle is only for children, think again! Montessori teachers go through the same developmental stages as their students.
NAMC montessori teacher development three year cycle novice practicing mastery
The developmental stages of Montessori teachers
Much like a first-year student, first-year Montessori teachers are, in general, full of excitement and wonder. Everything is new and amazing, and they work hard to create a peaceful and nurturing environment. Novice teachers greet their students with a mix of joy and trepidation. They sometimes feel as if they are in survival mode and often feel overwhelmed. They may even become disillusioned, wondering if it gets any easier.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Friday, January 25, 2013.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Montessori Grace and Courtesy: Not Just for Children

NAMC Montessori Grace and Courtesy between two teachers
“The training of the teacher who is to help life is something far more than the learning of ideas. It includes the training of character; it is a preparation of the spirit.” —Maria Montessori, The Absorbent Mind.

From the time children enter the Montessori environment, we teach them about grace and courtesy. We use soft voices and gentle words to help direct children to make appropriate choices. We never belittle, ridicule, or use sarcasm. We teach manners and develop empathy in our young charges. We teach conflict resolution. But what happens when we are not with the children can sometimes be something altogether contrary to what we teach in the classroom.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Wednesday, January 23, 2013.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Working with Your Montessori Assistant

NAMC working with your montessori assistant mapping triangles
Working closely with your Montessori assistant benefits you and the children
“The teacher must derive not only the capacity, but the desire, to observe natural phenomena. The teacher must understand and feel her position of observer: the activity must lie in the phenomenon.” (Maria Montessori, The Montessori Method, pg. 87.)

When I first learned that, as a Montessori teacher, I would have a full-time assistant, I was ecstatic. Having taught in a conventional classroom with large class sizes and no help, an assistant seemed like the answer to a prayer.

Working with an assistant can certainly be rewarding. It can be beneficial to you and the children to have an additional adult in the classroom, walking around and assisting children while you are giving lessons. However, as I soon learned, working with an assistant does not necessarily come naturally. Creating a working team takes time and patience, and most importantly, an open dialog between teacher and assistant.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Friday, January 18, 2013.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Substitute Teachers in the Montessori Environment

NAMC substitute teachers in montessori blowing nose
Winter means cold and flu season in North America. The American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately 5–20% of Americans get the flu each year, with more than 200,000 case requiring hospitalization (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2011). The reality of working closely with children is that Montessori teachers often contribute to these numbers and fall ill. When this happens and you need to miss some days from work, how will you take care of your classroom?

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Tuesday, January 15, 2013.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Celebrating Montessori Community with Complimentary Seasons Picture Cards

NAMC montessori community complimentary activity teacher girl matching
NAMC is celebrating a wonderful occasion! We have welcomed over 10,000 fans to our Montessori Training Facebook page, and to thank everyone for helping us to reach this milestone, we have put together a complimentary activity.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Wednesday, January 9, 2013.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Montessori Whole to Part: Lower Elementary Montessori Geography

NAMC montessori whole to part lower elementary geography boy with nesting dolls
Children gain a concrete understanding about whole to part using matryoshka dolls.
What is it about stacking and nesting materials that seem to draw children to them? For the very young, stacking materials offer the joy of building a tower over and then knocking it down. Over and over again they learn about cause and effect, as well as the fundamental laws of physics — what goes up, must come down! Nesting materials (graduated bowls, cups, boxes, etc.) teach spatial relationships, as well as the language of comparative adjectives (big, bigger, biggest; small, smaller, smallest) and prepositions (in, out, over, under, etc.). In addition, stacking and nesting materials help develop hand-eye coordination and the all important pincer grasp that is so necessary for writing. These materials also give children the opportunity to concretely experience the concept of a whole object and understanding the parts that are nestled within.

Not just limited to the preschool child, stacking and nesting materials help the elementary child classify and order abstract concepts by providing concrete, visual representations that they can understand easily. In a previous blog, we discussed how Russian matryoshka dolls can help upper elementary students learn about advanced biological classification. Stacking boxes can also be used at the lower elementary level to learn about the child’s place in the world.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Friday, January 4, 2013.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Upper Elementary Montessori Zoology: Advanced Classification

NAMC Upper Elementary Montessori Zoology Advanced Classification teacher child nesting dolls
Even the youngest Montessori child is fascinated by nesting dolls. 
I love how some materials seem to follow the child throughout their Montessori journey. For example, a set of matryoshka, or Russian nesting dolls, can be found beginning in the Montessori infant/toddler environment all the way up through upper elementary.

Matryoshka dolls are a beautiful piece of artwork and display of craftsmanship to add to the Montessori classroom. Children of all ages are fascinated by how the tiny dolls are hidden within the largest doll. As children open and close the dolls, they are developing their fine motor skills. As they grow older, children can compare, sequence, and classify the dolls using a variety of vocabulary: tall, taller, tallest; short, shorter, shortest; small, medium, large; etc. You can also use the dolls as sensorial objects for storytelling, as well as exploring history and cultural geography.

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. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Wednesday, January 2, 2013.
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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.

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