Monday, January 13, 2014

Montessori vs Better Late than Early

I really like how the author of this post really gets down to the fundamental of Montessori: providing the rich environment and showing the "why"
Another post of the same author's - equally balanced:

To emphasize her points in Montessori terms - that rich environment is one which provides the "keys". We don't "worry" about mastery of math facts or of reading by a certain age - but we do utilize those natural ebbs and flows within a child's development to provide corresponding sets of keys, such that the child can take them in most deeply at certain times in life --- then USE them when he, the individual, is ready to do so.

So we provide the keys to reading and writing and mathematics (among others) - during a time when the child is particularly attuned to absorbing certain information (sensitive periods) -- and then the child can "read" or "have those facts memorized" when it works for him.

This is very different from those who are strong proponents of "Better Late than Early" who see Montessori only as an "Enforced Early Academics".

Montessori is about rich environment, sensory exploration, feeding a child's interests --- providing keys for the fun of learning. REAL life experiences above all else.

The academics come naturally and without fight or harm, when the keys are in place - and on a child's own timing.


  1. This is kind of what I needed to hear. Thank you. At the same time it kind of makes me a bit conflicted that the rules in our state about homeschooling just don't let us flow with the child. Ahh, but to find the balance in it all.

    1. Abbie! I just saw your comment! Sorry I missed it!

      I wish the state rules could be consistent with Montessori! Montessori uses 3rd and 6th grades for the child to check those state standards and take responsibility for assuring understanding of that vocabulary, any "missed" concepts, etc. (not that they're missed - but for the goal of having a shared vocabulary with the public school students) --- I wish the public schools would do the same and provide "here is what we anticipate by 3rd grade" and "here is what we anticipate BY 6th grade" - before common core (bleck), no curriculum met every state standard anyway - so there was always variance based on the children, local needs, etc. Perfect system? Nope. Common Core will make it worse. But that is another topic ALtogether ;)