Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Montessori Elementary School Studies: Civil Rights

NAMC montessori elementary school studies students civil rights jumping
 World-shaking forces are now making the realization of human unity an urgent necessity. The time is past when some racial groups or nations can be civilized, leaving others servile or barbaric. Persistence in these outworn ideas can lead only to further wars and self-destruction, and how can a general change of thought be effected but by the teacher; not as tyrant or missionary, but as essential leader in the rising generation?
—Maria Montessori
To Educate the Human Potential

Dr. Montessori’s To Educate the Human Potential was first published in 1948. Imagine the experience of a world war as a frame of reference for this strong message. Montessori’s belief that education is essential to peace is as relevant today as it ever was. Those who struggle for human and civil rights around the globe would likely agree. Montessori strongly advocated that educators play a very important role in guiding future generations toward peace. The early part of the new year turns the focus on international leaders in civil and human rights.

Studying Civil Rights in Montessori Elementary Classrooms

In a 2008 broadcast on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the late Professor John Hope Franklin talks about the civil rights movement today. He states that although we have become accustomed to it, and that we do not have one particular person who is the face of civil rights movement such as Dr. King, there are many organizations existing today that subsist under the general title of “civil rights”.

With your elementary Montessori students, explore and discuss the definition of civil rights, historical events related to civil rights, and organizations today that work for civil rights, both at home and abroad. Study your country’s constitution as it relates to civil rights (e.g. US Constitution, Amendments 13, 14, 15 and 19).

Some helpful links:

This is a great springboard to further historical, cultural and peace education projects and studies.

— NAMC Staff

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 Tuesday, January 18, 2011.


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