Montessori at Home
Implementing Montessori at home, most parents are intrigued by it but don't know where to start. As a parent, you have to start by understanding that children, even the littlest ones, are capable of more than you realize. Once you acknowledge this, then you can make some changes around your home to set yourself and your child up for Montessori success.
Two key areas of focus:
Observe - Watching and observing your child from a distance is one of the first & key steps towards this journey. Children are capable of a lot more than we realize. Watch your child complete a task or simply how they navigate through an activity. Depending on how the child handles the situation will tell you whether the child needs help or how you can better prepare his/her environment for success next time.
Model - Model the behavior you expect your child to follow. For example, if you expect your child to keep their room organized, you must keep your room organized.
Engage - For your child to successfully practice anything new, it is important for you to engage with them in showing and helping them learn that new skill a few times. For example, to teach them to keep their room clean, you will have to clean the room with the child a few times to show them where everything goes.
Daily Routine - Children thrive on predictability. Having set routines help children self regulate. This eventually helps them become independent as they know what to expect without being reminded. For example, after dinner if there is a set routine to go brush the teeth, then story time and lastly getting tucked in the bed.
Make learning fun - Weaving in the letters, phonics, colors, numbers etc seamlessly into day to day activity helps your child in learning quicker & without any effort. Ask children to find yellow bell pepper while doing grocery shopping or play I spy with letter/number recognition by reading street names in the neighborhood.
Nature - Children are naturally drawn to nature and by spending time in nature together you create a lasting impression and strong bond with your child. Children are naturally inclined toward observing small objects, engage with them in observing and finding small objects.
Family Conversations - Include the children in day to day family conversation. This helps children learn vocabulary.
"A place for everything and everything in its place" is one of the critical principles of Montessori at home.
Bedroom - Have the child’s bed easily accessible to use. For example, if your toddler still sleeps in the crib that has 4 closed sides, maybe it is a good idea to open one side for easy access.
Toy Storage - Have the child’s toys stored neatly in an open shelf within easy access.
Clothing - Store clothing in the lower drawers of the dresser or hang a rod in the closet low enough for the child to access. Give children an opportunity to choose their clothes each day.
Small Pitcher - Having a small pitcher filled with milk or juice and placed on the lower section of the fridge helps children in becoming independent.
Kitchen - It’s innate in children to help around. Providing them with the right equipment helps them fulfill their desire to be helpful. In the kitchen children can help in washing vegetables, doing dishes etc. by standing on a stool.
We hope with the above mentioned recommendations you & your child will enjoy the montessori journey.