"Help me to do it myself", the concept of Montessori - The Montessori pedagogy goes back to the pedagogue and doctor Maria Montessori. This 1870 was born in Italy and came from good-middle-class home.
The Montessori concept
Christian educated and well traveled, she was particularly committed to women's rights and personal rights. She worked in a hospital with mentally handicapped children, but she found that they were quite willing to learn and receptive, but so far lacked the right concept.
Maria Montessori developed a sensory material specifically for these children to help the children develop. Based on this, the Montessori pedagogy developed over the years. The basic idea of the entire pedagogy is the well-known guiding principle: Help me to do it myself!
What is behind the Montessori pedagogy?
The Montessori pedagogy puts the child at the center of education, the child is a master builder of his own and motivation in the form of reward and punishment is not necessary at all. Children, according to the Montessori followers, would like to learn on their own and be internally motivated, since the idea of inserting themselves into the adult world is decisive.
Based on these assumptions, the Montessori schools teach a lot of free work and open lessons. Lessons give the child room to experiment and gain experience. The child with his talents is in the foreground, it determines its own pace of learning and develops in its own rhythm. Rather, it is only instructed to imitate things.
For example, in the Montessori kindergartens, children are motivated to set the table by watching over and over again and at some point trying to help themselves.
Learning with all senses - the felt 1000 at Montessori
The Montessori pedagogy divides the child development into three stages. The first childhood stage (0-6 years), the second childhood stage (8-12 years) and the adolescence (12-18 years). In all three phases the senses play a significant role, because children have a natural urge to taste, touch and smell everything.
Understanding in the literal sense is a basic idea in the Montessori schools and kindergartens. Learning would be best done through the senses rather than the abstract, so the learning would be better, say advocates. Through this emphasis on the senses, the special learning material developed. In mathematics, for example, pearl necklaces are used to make numbers comprehensible, that is, tangible. Blocks of pearls with 1000 pieces symbolize higher numbers and allow the child to better imagine sizes - not just in the head, but also felt.
Montessori schools and kindergartens in Germany
In Germany, around 600 day care centers work according to the concept of Maria Montessori. At the beginning of 2013 there were 225 elementary schools and 156 secondary schools that follow these principles. The schools are mostly privately owned and put the development of the child at the center of their goals.
Most critics see the transition from a Montessori elementary school to a secondary school as problematic. However, it has been shown in the past that children have no difficulties whatsoever. The contents of the curriculum do not differ from those of a regular school, but the path is crucial, how does the child learn this content.
Free work, choice of partner, group work, open teaching with a lot of opportunity for movement, own timing are just some of the aspects that come into play in the Montessori schools. Ultimately, the child benefits from these measures because it learns to work independently.