In The Absorbent Mind, Dr. Montessori wrote, "The most important period of life is not the age of university studies, but the first one, the period from birth to the age of six. For that is the time when man's intelligence itself, his greatest implement is being formed. But not only his intelligence; the full totality of his psychological powers… At no other age has the child a greater need of an intelligent help, and any obstacle that impedes his creative work will lessen the chance he has of achieving perfection."
The Montessori approach to early childhood education is a wonderful way to introduce problem solving both for a young child's brain and help work on their motor skills as well. At traditional preschools, or daycare Children often learn through play and through manipulation of toys. At Arbor View Montessori, our approach goes beyond and helps nourish the full potential of the child’s development.
Montessori approach to early childhood education is a prime example of teaching boys and girls concepts that intentionally expand the child’s development. Imaginative play and real life role play help the child grasp concepts that might otherwise be foreign to them. Early stimulation rather than introducing the behaviors later can help the mind grow and process information way before what was originally thought possible.
Studies based on controlled research have confirmed these theories of Dr. Montessori. After analyzing thousands of such studies, Dr. Benjamin S. Bloom of the University of Chicago, wrote in Stability and Change in Human Characteristics, "From conception to age 4, the individual develops 50% of his mature intelligence; from ages 4 to 8 he develops another 30%… this would suggest the very rapid growth of intelligence in the early years and the possible great influence of the early environment on his development."
At Arbor View Montessori, our approach to early childhood education not only teaches children how to fine tune their motor skills but also help them to develop a sense of independence. Some of the key examples of the Montessori approach in early childhood education are:
- The observation that children take a natural pleasure in learning to master their environment and that this mastery is the basis of the sense of competence necessary for independence.
- The judgment that real learning involves the ability to do things for oneself, not the passive reception of a body of knowledge.
- That the child benefits from learning materials that are intrinsically interesting, reality oriented and designed to facilitate self-correcting and the refinement of sensory perceptions.
- That imposing immobility and silence hampers children’s learning and that, given interesting work to do, children will establish their own order.