Greystone House Montessori Schools Houston, Texas. Child care Montessori provider in Champions, The Woodlands, Spring Texas Greystone House Montessori Schools Houston
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For people outside Montessori, the fervor which Montessorians have for the method must seem strange. When we report “Classroom News” in the newsletter, the gentle little stories of the children’s activities may seem ho-hum to a non-Montessorian. To Montessorians, the stories thrill us with demonstrations of concentration, social responsibility, and excitement about learning. Csikzentmihali of the University of Chicago calls that place where masterfulness and interest come together “flow”, and for adults it produces “optimal performance”. People who get into flow have no sense of time, and when they come out of that place, there’s a tremendous euphoria. The Montessori environment creates that same flow for children.

Dr. Montessori emphasizes that the ability to concentrate is the basis of all learning. This is the reason for the long work periods and the reluctance to interrupt the child’s work. It’s the basis for the whole practical life area, where the child practices order, coordination, concentration, and independence. Dr. Montessori also instructs us that the child knows his purpose and the aim for his effort. He must learn how to function in his culture, and he will work tirelessly to learn self-care, how to establish order to his environment, how to read, count, measure, and understand the how’s and why’s of his world. The teacher creates an environment where the child understands the purpose of the work, where the work is interesting and beautiful. She designs work that fits a child’s hands, and she guides the child to understand the point of interest in every exercise.

As the child understands purpose, he works tirelessly to perfect his skills, and he joyfully shares his sense of achievement with his friends. Intellect is stirred by watching children older than himself performing increasingly complex tasks, and he reinforces his learning by sharing it with younger or less experienced children. When a child becomes distressed by his environment, the teacher understands that it’s because the child’s needs are not being met, and she examines what can be done to bring order back into balance.

So when we get excited about toddlers helping infants or about a primary child pricking his first map of Australia, it’s Montessori speak for “the system is working”. Consider applying these same principles to the environment you create for your family at home. Flow is a beautiful thing.