Montessori is both a philosophy and a method of education. It is not enough to describe it as a method alone. Without the philosophy to inform those methods, one would simply have a collection of lessons plans and techniques. It is the Montessori philosophy that calls us to study the child and the human experience, and to govern ourselves internally. This allows us to provide children with unique and holistic learning opportunities. One of Ms. Kathy’s favorite one-line definitions of Montessori captures the essence of this calling:
“Montessori is a living environment that supports human development.”
If we analyze this definition, we find two key points.
- Everything living changes and grows.
- Everything living needs to be nurtured and fed.
In light of this first point, we find that a Montessori classroom is an ever-growing and changing environment. We must nurture this environment with good attention to keep it healthy and alive.
This brings us to the second key point: Montessori supports human development. The word “support” implies special care and nurturing for optimal growth and development. The environment must always grow and change to meet the individual needs of the children it serves, as well as the classroom community.
Our goal at Montessori Tides School is to provide fertile soil and a healthy habitat where growing minds, hearts, and bodies can become strong and unfold, or blossom. We accomplish this by nurturing the child’s intrinsic love for learning; fostering skills that allow for independence; encouraging cooperation and responsibility; stimulating curiosity and wonder; inspiring creativity; and evoking wisdom.
To learn more about planting the seeds of learning, watch the video below.