Montessori seems like such a foreign, weird concept to some. Even parents who send their kid to a Montessori school may only have a vague notion about the Montessori philosophy. But if you are wanting to support your child’s Montessori education or if you are just interested in being more child-led in your home, Montessori at home doesn’t have to be hard.
Look, I’ve worked in a Montessori school for 5 years now. It took a while, but I have a good grasp on the philosophy and part of the reason I write this blog is to help others understand too. (In fact, if you want to learn a little more, make sure you read What the Heck is Montessori?) But even I have been guilty of making bringing Montessori into my home too hard. (If you are looking for more ways to be more Montessori at home, check out my e-book 30 Ways to Make Your Home More Montessori. It is full of easy ways to incorporate more Montessori ideals in your home.)
Sure, it is one thing to follow Montessori ideals: child-led learning and freedom of movement among other things are easy once you are committed to them. But what kinds of activities can you do with your children that are Montessori based?
Well I’m here to tell you that when you try to come up with these activities, you are probably overthinking it. You don’t need it to be perfect and you don’t need it to match exactly what they do at school. Here is how that looked for me the other day.
The other day, my daughter had been doing some art and got marker all over her hands. She asked to wash her hands and, instead of sending her upstairs to where her bathroom stool is, I figured I could set up a quick hand washing activity for her.
I gathered a towel for the floor, a tub of warm water, a washcloth, some soap, and a hand towel for when she was done. I set it up on the kitchen floor and she went to town. She already had the hand washing presentation at school, so she knew what she was supposed to do.
Was it strictly Montessori to a tee? No. She didn’t get the water herself, we used a plastic tub, and I didn’t have a nail brush or bar soap. But it didn’t matter. At the end of the day, it was good all around. I allowed her the freedom to do the job herself and she enjoyed exploring with the soap.
So the next time you are thinking of doing an activity and you are worried about it because it isn’t “Montessori enough,” just relax. You are overthinking it. Things don’t always have to be perfect to work.
(And if you are interested in some easy ways to be more Montessori in your home, check out my e-book 30 Ways to Make Your Home More Montessori. It is full of all sorts of ways to follow Montessori at home.)
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