I first learned about Montessori when my sister’s children started going to Montessori about 22 years ago. However, it was a number of years later that I started working in Montessori. I started with 3-6 children, but now I have been teaching 6-9-year-olds for several years.
It is difficult to recall what first caught my interest in Montessori, maybe it was watching my nieces and nephews being independent at home. What I do remember is that whenever I was doing any training, I wished there had been the opportunity for me to have this type of schooling when I grew up. Maybe I would have been better at maths and more interested in school in general.
I have a Montessori 3-6 diploma from London Montessori Centre and worked for four years in a Montessori preschool. I then spent three years at university getting my state primary qualifications with the intention of teaching in a Montessori classroom when I graduated. In 2003 and 2004 I travelled to New York and completed an American Montessori Society Diploma for 6-9-year-olds, and I have taught this age group for the last seven years.
What I love about Montessori are the ‘aha moments’ that the children have when they suddenly realise something. I like that I don’t have to be the bearer of all knowledge, that the children can seek help from each other, and that I can also ask them for help. I like that I can take the time to sit and observe children. I like that I can be giving a lesson and the rest of the class are getting on with what they have chosen to do. I like it that sometimes when I go to give a lesson, the child says ‘another child has already given me that lesson.’
It is fantastic that children can learn independently and be so collaborative together.
Hello Tania, I would simply want to comment Ditto to all the things you like about working in a Montessori classroom. I love to think of Montessori as a verb and not a noun as mentioned in the book ‘The Tao of Montessori’. It’s such a joyful experience year after year and to see how much children are capable of. How beautiful it is to see when children work towards reaching normalization and learn to work in harmony as a class community.
Thank-you Daljeet for your comment. I will pass this onto Tania.