Maria Montessori’s pedagogical philosophy aims for development of the human potential, as a preparation for life. Learning is a dynamic process, in which the whole personality of the child must be actively involved. In order to educate the WHOLE child, the child must have freedom to develop his physical, intellectual and spiritual power. In a properly prepared environment, the child spontaneously explores learning with the tools of inner discipline and outer freedom.
The Practical Life Materials involved the children in precise movements and allow them to work at their own pace. The children spontaneously and naturally seek order and independently through movement and purposeful activity.The early Practical Life exercise are simple, and they are followed by increasingly more challenging activities, which help the children develop their own coordination of movement and lengthen their concentration span.
The Sensorial materials are specially designed to train sense.
They are divided into seven groups:
The Mathematics materials presented in the Montessori classroom are designed for “hands –on” exploration. By manipulating simple objects such as, spindles, beads, and number cards, the concepts of quantity and number-symbols are acquired with ease. A stable foundation, in the concept of numbers 1 to 10 leads to the exercises in the decimal system. Through this manipulation, the children are introduced to the four basic processes of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
Using sandpaper letters, the children are able to learn the sounds of the alphabet and their corresponding symbols. Exercises with the Movable Alphabet involve the child in building words and sentences from the sounds, allowing the child to freely express his ideas. The child is given vocabulary and the language of all the pieces of apparatus in the classroom. All the areas have classified cards, which help the child build and expand vocabulary. He is now ready to explore the interpretive as well as the mechanical side of language, the reading stage.
Through the cultural area, children are introduced to history, art, music, geography, botany, and zoology. The Montessori classroom offers the child the opportunity to explore the world through cultural works. The child is able to see and understand the world and to respect all living things and to develop a sense of wonder in life’s many different manifestations.