Montessori`s education is based on her "conception of science, her observations of children, her extensive research in anthropology, psychology, and pedagogy" and her research, experience, and discovery of children`s growth, development, and education (Gutek 2004:45).
Montessori claimed that children at birth had the spiritual capacity and an inner teacher who stimulated learning. They possess the internal capacity to consume and assimilate the elements of the external world without direct instruction. Children`s physiological and psychic strength allows them to move about freely, exploring the world.
Interaction with the environment enriches children and develops their self-experience. Children must be "free to act" in the environment. Their free programs provide instructions to the instructor on the progress of the child and the form of instruction to be further provided.
Like Rousseau, Pestalozzi, and Froebel Montessori also believed that children were innately orderly and that their free will should not be controlled by strong external discipline. She strongly opposed the concept of prodding children by either punishment or reward (Gutek 2004: 46).
Contrary to the popular notion that children are disorderly and require a carefree environment, she found that children liked a structured environment that enhances their learning. When the environment is structured, it gives stability to the child to respect the environment and carry out activities on their own.
Montessori discovered the insatiable love of play of children and their relentless attempts to gain freedom (Montessori 1966: 9). The child doesn`t just want to do an activity, but wants to do things. Most of the activities of children are to imitate an adult.
His accomplishments may be trivial to adults. He may not be about to justify his eagerness to carry out his duties, but they will be important to the development of a social man in the future.
Children who are deprived of their play are like being mentally hungry. If a person is physically hungry, he needs food for his stomach. His appetite can be fulfilled only by his eating, and only by food. Some amount of water is not going to satisfy his hunger.
Similarly, when a child is mentally hungry, he needs food for his mind and spirit, which he alone needs to do. All external support is "unthinkable, unkindness ... hindrance." Thus, the key challenge in education is to "provide the child with the required support, without excessive help, so that the child can be encouraged to improve himself" (Montessori 1966: 12). The foundation of education is therefore self-activity.
Another unique philosophy of Montessori is her study of the child and her abilities compared to other mammals. She observes that a mammal, a kitten, or a pupa changes very little in their lifetime. For example, a cat can mew within a few days of its birth.
If it`s going to live in India, Africa, or America, it`s going to start to Mew. And there are the pups. Whereas human babies are isolated from these species. They do not have a fixed language at birth and will learn a language depending on where they are going to be (1992:101).
Culture, therefore, did not make the language inherited. Montessori shows that while the instincts of animals are awakened at the moment of their birth, the psychic powers of human beings are awakened when they are born.
Montessori supports the fact that human beings have two developmental stages – prenatal and postnatal developmental stages. The fetal developmental phase is the same as for other mammals. The postnatal embryonic period that she calls the spiritual embryonic period or the psychic embryonic period as it is when the child`s psychic powers develop.
Montessori claimed that all things animate and inanimate on earth obey the rules of nature in "definite and permanent ways" (1966:13). For example, it is neither the father nor the mother, but the child who creates and builds himself.
Even if the father had died before birth and the mother had died immediately after birth, we would still have had the same ability, Montessori (1966:12) argues, "If the child in us had died, we wouldn`t be here." Montessori did not take away the importance of parents but sought to develop the importance of a child as a builder who could build himself through his play.
She cites examples from the animal world about how they grow on their own without the aid of their parents. The first example she`s offering is a bird. Hen`s mother performs her duty to seriously hatch the eggs. She`s getting a strange fever, and she`s sitting on the eggs for three weeks to give the required heat.
When the eggs hatch, the hen continues to take care of her offspring. She gathers them under her wings, keeps them warm and covers them, and teaches them to peck. Chicks follow her example and learn to do it. Hen`s mother gives her chicks her affection, warmth, and sacrifice, but she didn`t make the little chicks (1966:13).
The silkworms are another example. The tiny silkworms emerge from the eggs, which are no more than grains in the sand. Such tiny silkworms feed on the leaves of a specific tree. They feed and sleep; they grow and they grow.
What would have happened if the leaves weren`t there? Who brought these silkworms here? The mother butterfly laid eggs on this flower, which would be the food of her offspring, and died immediately. It was Nature`s order that Mother Butterfly obeyed.
The child`s silkworms had to search for themselves, find a way to the leaves, then create a cocoon, and make a chrysalis, which is the accomplishment of the silkworm according to the laws of nature. The wonder of nature is that, by self-activity, growth and development take place.
Standing (1998) suggests that nothing is as significant and original as what Montessori terms sensitive periods. In his work with some species, the biologist Hugo de Vries used the term sensitive duration for the first time. It was later applied to human development by Montessori. Montessori also displays the life cycle of a butterfly called Porthesia.
Porthesia lays her eggs on a tree bark and dies. Small wriggling caterpillars emerge from these nests. The mouthpieces of these caterpillars are so tender that they are unable to eat the leaves or the bark in the place they are. Also, tender leaves can be eaten, and they are at the tip of the branch. Now, the problem is who`s going to carry the caterpillars to the tip of the branch.
Mother`s butterfly is already dead. De Vries discovered that these caterpillars have an unusual vulnerability to sunlight, which causes them to travel into the light with an overwhelming impulse (Standing 1998:119). As a result, the caterpillars enter the tip of the branches and consume the tender leaves.
When they get larger, their jaws get stronger. They lose their immunity to sunlight. Now, they can travel to any part of the tree, and they can eat any leaf. Sensibility, which was very important at one time, vanished when its purpose was served.
Similar qualities are also found in human beings. Montessori calls these critical periods because they are different times when the child is drawn to certain aspects of the world. Sensitive cycles are transitory, meaning that sensitive times will not be there forever. Once the function has been fulfilled, they vanish.
In sensitive periods, prolonged exercise does not cause fatigue in adolescents. For example, when the child has a hard time with language, the child tirelessly laughs and speaks. Like fires that burn intensely without consuming, they keep functioning without getting tired (Standing, 1998:120).
In the first stage of development, which is from birth to six years, Montessori recognized several sensitive times.
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Sensitive Language Period: This concerns the acquisition of spoken language. The critical time for language starts well before the child starts to walk or speak. At the age of four months, the infant watches the speaker`s mouth intently making soundless words.
It`s as if the muscles of the mouth, the lips, and the tongue, which were used only for biting and crying until then, are now starting to vibrate along with the spoken sounds he makes. At six months, the infant will begin to produce realistic sounds. He never stops to learn sounds and phrases (Standing, 1998:121).
An important time for order: another critical cycle that starts at the end of the second year and ends in the third year. There are two types of outer order and inner order. Outer order concerns the interaction between the sections of the child`s world.
The inner order gives the child a sense of body parts, gestures, and roles (Montessori 1986:56). We know exactly which fingers to push and how much to push when we want to hold a pencil. They say this because the kid in us was working at it when he was young (Montessori 1986:56).
The kid transfers the pieces of his body freely, tests, plays, and stores them in his muscular memory. The responsive time of order allows the child to do this. Outer order brings security to a child who comes new to this world and needs to learn the atmosphere in which he lives. Order for him is a "need for survival." Even a little environmental pollution disturbs the infant (Standing 1998:125).
Responsive period for small objects: this critical period also starts in the second year.
Children two years of age are drawn to tiny artifacts in their surroundings. They are drawn to such trivial objects that the eyes of adults are absent and almost invisible (Standing 1998:128). Adults wonder how a child could be interested in these tiny, colorless twigs when there are such beautiful flowers in the garden and colorful toys lying around. Montessori explains with an illustration that children are drawn to fun, noisy, bright things, but the child is interested in small things at this particular moment (Standing 1998: 129).
Sensitive time for refining the senses: Sensitive times, in addition to placing the child`s mind on the elements in the world, often "establishes and perfects the role of development" (Standing 1998:129).
Montessori was in line with Aristotle`s theory that senses are gateways to knowledge. Whatever comes to the intellect, first comes to the senses, and then comes to the mind. Before the conscious mind grows, the child should have had ample experience with sensory experiences.
If the experiences of the senses are right, the message sent to the mind will also be right, and the decision made by the mind will also be correct. The child has a sensitive period for developing the senses for around two years.
The child between the ages of two and a half and six is involved in learning good manners, such as opening and closing the door, greeting, handing a sharp instrument to another, eating right, walking gently, making a sign of the cross, lighting a candle, and so on. It`s sometimes called grace and courtesy. At this age, children learn without much difficulty because of the sensitive time.
A sensitive period in a caterpillar is merely an instinct, while in a human being, it is a raging psychological love – a drama between the child and the world. Since the sensitive period does not last long and is transitive, children learn not to get exhausted easily during the critical time of sensibility, educators must make use of the high tide in the event of a flood.
What happens if the time frames are not used? Montessori provides an example of an old woman knitting a scarf, who loses a thread here and there. She`s also finishing the jumper. The stitches fell, however, are the weak points of the sweater.
Similarly, as our skills are made up during vulnerable times, we still grow up, but our physical, emotional, and social structure has fallen. We can grow up into adults with awkward gestures, bad games, lack of appreciation for games, lack of color sense, bad figures, illegible handwriting, atrocious accents, and so on (Standing 1998:136). Unfortunately, because the critical times are temporary, they cannot be recovered until they have finished.
You cannot get the child to have the same passion, and the same desire to obtain the skill when the response time is missed. For example, the language-sensitive period lasts from six months to three years. If a kid doesn`t get a chance to talk for whatever reason, he won`t be able to communicate.
The child spends more time and energy studying the same language as he or she spends his or her receptive time in the language. However, the result will not be as good as it was when it was learned during a sensitive period.
Standing (1998: 106), says that there are many ideas in the Montessori system, but the fundamental difference between the child and the adult is the most important of all. The basic distinction between the adult and the child is that the adult has achieved the species mark, while the infant is in a constant state of development and metamorphosis.
The child undergoes continuous metamorphosis in physical, social, and mental life just as a butterfly passes through his life history. At conception, the head of the child looks bigger and the legs are smaller.
If he continues to develop into an adult in the same proportion, his head will be one-third of the average adult's height. He`d look like a hideous monster. There is a metamorphosis of the human body, and the proportions of the body can change.
The human child is not rising like an oak tree. There are ups and downs here. It is, in essence, a sequence of new births (Montessori 1992:22). One psychic identity comes to an end, and another is born. Montessori acknowledges four phases of growth and labels them four action plans.
They were born six years, six to twelve years, twelve to eighteen years, and eighteen to twenty-four years. The six-year interval is not the amount selected automatically. Montessori draws similarities between teeth and child development and claims, "Nature makes use of teeth as a milestone in the growth of the adult" (1966: 28). Both milk teeth emerge in two and a half years at around six years, milk teeth start shaking, and in the eighteenth year, the wisdom tooth starts shaking.
The first stage of growth (birth to the sixth year): this cycle has two sub-phases of 0 – 3 years and 3 – 6 years. In the first sub-phase, the child has a mind called the "Unconscious Mind" by Montessori. At that time, the child constantly receives sensations from the world but does not realize that he is doing so.
The word "Unconscious or Unconscious Mind" (Standing 1998:109). Human beings have a special condition to contend with relative to other species. No other animal has to make an effort to learn how to stand, eat food by the side, walk on two legs, or learn an alien language. To do all this, he needs a mind different from that of an adult, and he has different powers. In comparison to adults, the infant does not possess intelligence and willpower.
He must create them for himself (Montessori 1992: 28).
Montessori (1992:30-102) maintains that Nature provided the unconscious powers Absorbent Mind, Horm, and Mneme before the conscious powers of the child were created. The Absorbent Brain is an unconscious brain that absorbs sensations from the world.
In the first six years, the child`s mind is like a sponge, absorbing whatever comes into contact with it. Like a sponge child`s mind, it does not differentiate between good or evil, right or wrong, so it consumes everything. The child consumes everything in the same way. It is the Absorbent Mind that absorbs the language, culture, gait, customs, and so on.
Mneme embodies the elements absorbed by the Absorbent Mind. The language that the infant learns is not merely remembered. The kid embodies it in his personality and makes a part of himself. As a result, the language learned in childhood is rarely forgotten.
Home is a guiding force that encourages the child to carry out the tasks set out for him. As for the language. The home encourages the child to repeat the same sounds continuously. Because the child`s mind is unaware, the child cannot be supported directly.
The aware forces of will, and intellect, take form along with eye and hand coordination, and control of the limbs. As soon as the conscious powers grow, their conscious powers slowly vanish.
In the second sub-phase of 3 to 6 years, whatever the child had unconsciously learned in the first sub-phase is brought to the surface by the work of the hands, they are consciously recalled (Standing 1998:112). In the earlier stage, by unconscious knowledge, he mastered the use of the Absorbent Mind. Now, actively, he`s taking in by using his mouth.
The hands thus are instruments of his intellect. It is through the movement of his hands that he enriches his experience and develops himself (Standing 1998:112).
The first stage 0 – 6 years of development is mainly a human being and an infant is not yet a social being. The child does not need direct support at this point, and any effort to provide direct help would impede the child`s growth (Standing 1998:113).
All it requires is the ability to act on its own without the involvement of an adult, a specially designed atmosphere in which the child can choose to behave and make social contacts. In the first step, when the child is allowed to build up his identity through independent study, Montessori says, "a new child will emerge" (Standing 1998: 113).
The second stage of growth (six to twelve years): the second stage lasts from six to twelve years. In comparison to the previous stage, the second stage is a time without many changes (Standing 1998:115). There are also no sub-phases.
As Montessori rightly pointed out, the child`s life is a sequence of births. The child of the second stage is entirely different from the first stage. Physically, the baby looks slim and tall. In the first stage, round contours and baby fat disappear. His milk teeth are beginning to fall out. He`s no longer a boy, but a tough guy.
Children at this age are interested in special items. Either extremely large or extremely small. Ordinary issues are not of concern to them. Now, he likes to be in parties and gangs. The child at this stage has a strong herd instinct and blindly follows the leader.
They have a strong mind to reason, and their questions revolve around why and how. Their area of operation is expanded, and they are no longer content to live within the four walls of their house. Their range is rising, and they want to extend their boundaries and get out of society.
In the first point, they`re not so interested in creativity that they can visualize and appreciate creativity. They`re trying to explore the moral area and keep asking questions about right or wrong. Now their learning devices are limbs and imagination.
The third stage of development (twelve to eighteen years): like the first stage of development, the third stage of development has also been characterized by significant transformations. The third stage is therefore divided into two sub-phases: 12 to 15 years and 15 to 18 years.
The child reaches puberty at this stage, and thus he/she undergoes physical and mental changes. As many physical changes occur, the child`s mental energy appears to be reduced. Compared to the tough guy of the second stage, the child of the third stage is still raw and not yet fully developed and has many flaws in the adjustment to social life.
Evidence of a feeling of inferiority at this time can result in an inferiority complex. Such defects may be dangerous and may lead to the inability to work, laziness, dependence on others, a cynical outlook, and criminality.
Montessori exclaims, "... in the problem of social adjustment lies the (really) vital problem of education for adolescents, (far more) than the passing of examinations" (Standing 1998:117). The adolescent is neither a child nor a mature adult. He`s a beginner who`s getting ready for the call.
Just as the first and second stages of the environment have been prepared, the third stage also includes a prepared environment called "Erde-Kinder." These are the land settlements where adolescents learn social life, but cultivate the land and produce dairy products.
According to Montessori, the child needs economic freedom in the third stage of development (Standing 1998:117).
Application of stages of development: Montessori does not stop at describing the stages of development and the variations between them. Its methods vary according to each stage of development. For example, learning is unconscious in the first stage of development.
Teachers cannot access the child`s intelligence directly, so they must use their hands and senses to access the child`s intelligence as instruments of learning.
There is therefore no direct teaching in the age group of 3 to 6 years. Children are allowed to use their hands to control special equipment that stimulates their senses and therefore their intellect. In the second stage of development, children still develop through self-activity, but they know that their reasoning mind is strong.
Between 6 and 12 years of age, the child needs to know the reason behind things and situations. Now he appreciates his creativity. Correspondingly, the events, and lessons given, should provide room for the thought and creativity of the child.
At the third level, 12 to 18 years of age, the child is prone to economic independence. The climate is designed in such a way that adolescents are encouraged to cultivate the land, grow the crops, agree on the price of the yield and sell it. In addition, they also take care of cattle and manage dairy products.
A major difference between the concept of development provided by other psychologists and Montessori is that Montessori (1992:107) defines development as the achievement of successive stages of independence. She calls birth herself the conquest of independence as a child achieves freedom when he gets out of his mother`s womb.
Until then, he had depended on his mother for every need. He depended on his mother for food, excretion, and breathing. His body temperature relied on the temperature of his mother`s body, shielded from frequent wheezing and shocks caused by the amniotic fluid in his womb. The birth, therefore, signifies the achievement of freedom.
Earlier, at any point, the child reaches a higher degree of independence. The importance of independence can be seen in the growth of a normal child compared to an abnormal child or a child with developmental disorders. These two children look the same thing.
They`ve got legs, but they can`t move, hands, but they can`t catch something, a mouth that doesn`t talk. They`re almost nil at birth. Both rely on their mothers, who hold, feed, and turn side by side when required. After three months, the normal child rolls side by side and is no longer dependent on the mother.
At six months, he will turn on his stomach independently, sit for eight months, stand for nine months, and walk on his own for twelve months. Gradually, he`s becoming independent. In other words, it`s evolving. On the other hand, the other child only lying on his back for six months, one year later he began to move from side to side.
This child is growing physically, his height and weight are increasing, but he has not gained independence. Accordingly, Montessori argues that development is aimed at achieving independence (Standing 1998: 282).
What makes a child different from an adult? Is that the size? Age? Experience?
Montessori states that the adult is the one who has fulfilled the norms of the species, while the infant is still in "a state of development and metamorphosis" (Standing, 1998:106). There`s another distinction, too. When a kid filling his toy truck with sand at the beach is contrasted to an adult filling his truck with sand at the same beach, both are engaging in similar activities.
If someone goes to the worker and offers help, and even if they are skeptical at first, they will allow us to help and sit down and smoke. Similarly, if anyone approaches the child and offers support, he declines to do so, and if he agrees, he will protect himself with great determination.
Furthermore, one might find the boy, empty the sand filled in the bucket, and start filling it all over again. This process of filling is repeated several times. On the other hand, the worker gets tired and takes a lot of breaks in between. Whereas the kid works for hours but does not seem to be getting tired (Standing 1998:141-142).
Adult works with a specific purpose or target. He`s loading a truck with sand because he`s going to be compensated by his boss, or because he`s going to improve his climate. Whereas the child works for an internal goal, that is, to grow (Standing 1998:142).
The relationship between adults and children in the world also varies (Standing 1998:143). The adult appreciates the world and seeks to change the world, while the child learns information from the environment and uses it to build itself (Standing 1998:263). Therefore, the setting plays a significant role in the Montessori classroom.
Physical movement has been ignored in the current education system, and only the brain is given priority. Until recently, only physical education had physical motions that were too distant from the mind. Physical education is perceived to be inferior in the area of education and culture.
To understand the importance of movement, we need to learn the function of the nervous system. The human nervous system consists of the brain, the senses, the muscles, and the nerves. The brain is controlling and making decisions. Senses are instruments that take pictures and move through the nerves to the brain. The nerves aim to give the muscles (flesh) movement (energy). Thus, without movements, there is no person.
Unfortunately, modern times find movement separate from the higher purpose.
People assume that muscles are merely there and must be used to maintain better body health or stay fit or play tennis for leisure (Montessori 1992:175). Even in schools, children develop physically or mentally. Thus, we are separating the two entities that nature has developed to bring together.
It is believed that man`s motor acts are intended to help us feed and breathe; in actuality, the true aim of the movement is to serve the whole of life and the world`s moral, universal economy (Montessori 1992:176).
Mind and mind are two components of the same action cycle. Both mind and action are required for any action to be realized. The mass of muscles without a brain or power without muscle control is useless. Thus, mental development "must" be linked to movement and must depend on it.
Almost all educators, before Montessori, thought of the movement and importance of the muscular system but considered it essential for respiration and physical well-being. Whereas, in the Montessori system, the movement has a great deal of significance in mental development, so the action that is taking place is related to the mental activity that is taking place.
"This encourages both mental and spiritual development, without which there can be neither full improvement nor full health (mind)" (Montessori 1992:177).
Compared to human beings, certain creatures have other signature motions, such as jumping, slithering, riding, swimming, and so on. And they`ve got very limited movement. Man`s movement, on the other hand, is unlimited and flexible.
He will observe all the movements of the animals and make some of the movements of the animals his own. One and one condition, however. He`s got to develop himself. He will work, generated by will, subconsciously repeat the coordination exercises and conquer all of them.
No man, however, can conquer all his muscles, but only a part of his muscles (Montessori 1992:179).
In modern education, movement is considered to be important for writing, for some games, and for social life. This limited focus does not serve the purpose of movement. The purpose of the movement is to establish the cohesion of the movement required for his psychic life to enrich his functional and executive dimension of psychic life (Montessori 1992:181).
At last, Montessori warns of the lack of movement. Nature has provided some useful purposes for movement. Each of them has its own characteristic movement with its own intent.
The development of the universe is the harmonious integration of all these events with a fixed intent. What happens to a world where people are without movement, humanity is displaying the wisdom of an individual, wondering what will happen if all men stopped moving for a week. "Everyone is going to die." Men all over the world did nothing but perform a few physical assholes, humanity would die in a short time.
It will use all its resources for nothing (Montessori 1992:183). The basis of society is a movement called behavior. Behavior is not confined to the center of practical life in a house, cleaning rooms, washing clothes, and so on. Everyone in the world should work for themselves and others as well.
For example, the tailor worker has been sewing all his life, but he doesn`t wear all the clothes he makes. Likewise, an artist who perfects his movements dances for others. And there`s gymnastics. Thus, Montessori believed that every form of life had purposeful movements that were not self-development alone.
According to Montessori`s principle, learning in the Montessori classroom is achieved through movement. Every activity has a movement or a movement, including language and mathematics.
Whereas in traditional classrooms, learning is accomplished through listening and reading, recitation, and writing. Except for writing, their learning is rarely related to the movement of their bodies. The lack of movement also makes the factory model workable in traditional schools (Lillard A. 2017:38-39).
In light of recent studies, Lillard discusses at length the importance of movement in the present world. Her first research was conducted by Richard Held and Alan in 1963. They studied vision production in ten pairs of kittens. The experiment involved the kitten leader and the kitten follower.
The leader kitten had a cart attached to his body that dragged the follower kitten around. The leader kitten was allowed to explore the vision-driven world; the follower kitten went through the same world passively. Although the kitten followed had the same visual capability, it was not involved in the exploration.
After three months, the kitten`s vision was tested, and it was found that the leader kittens reacted to events such as approaching objects and apparent drop-offs, and the follower kittens did not display signs of depth of perception.
In 2002, psychologist Amanda Woodward and her colleagues found that children who have passed the milestone of pointing by themselves are much better at recognizing the sense of someone`s "pointing. Similarly, children who have discovered a way to use various ways of bringing toys close to them will better understand the ways-ends of others (Lillard A. 2017:42). Thus, advances in the use of the hand are linked to advances in cognition in both the physical and the social world.
The research was conducted in urban China in 1997. It was noted that infants in urban China spent much of their time sitting on a very comfortable bed, surrounded by thick pillows. Their parents are prevented from walking to avoid dirty hands and legs. Infant parents in suburban China encourage them to crawl.
When infants were tested for gauze, suburban Chinese infants followed around 75 percent of the gauze, while urban infants could only follow 50 percent (Lillard A. 2017:43).
Another research shows that when a movement has a goal, it produces more desirable outcomes. Research conducted by Rovee-Collier & Hayne, 2000 shows that infants who can kick their legs in their cribs to cause a mobile to move overhead engage in more kicking than other infants (Lillard A. 2017:44). In 1998 Kleim et al. study, rats were either conditioned to cross an elevated obstacle course or to exercise aboard.
It was found that there was an increased density of neural connections in rats who did the obstacle course, and not in rats who were merely training on a drum. Lillard (2017) concludes that motion and cognition are closely intertwined.
People represent spaces and object more accurately, make judgments faster and more accurately, remember information better, and show superior social cognition when their movements are aligned with what they think or learn.
Montessori materials present two kinds of movements — physical and mental. Physical movements are grasping, placing, walking, moving, sweeping, mopping, pouring, polishing, rolling, unrolling, buttoning, fastening, and so on. Mental gestures are detected, measured, analyzed, and concluded. Thus, mental observation is a movement without any physical movement.
Comparing human beings with animals Montessori points out that human beings are defenseless. While the snake has poison, the tiger, the lion, and the cheetah have sharp claws; the birds can fly; the human being, without having any of these, rules all other animals since he has the intelligence and the hand that transforms the ideas that emerge from intelligence into action.
He was no better than any other animal before the man lived on four limbs. As soon as he lived on his hind limbs and kept his two front limbs free, he started walking upright, far different from the other animals. Later, his brain muscles were triggered, and he became the "thinking man" of Homo Sapiens.
The thoughts of the mind had to be materialized through the work of the hands. Thus, Montessori calls Man Homo Labor a working man, instead of Homo Sapien a thinking man (Standing E. 1998:147).
Montessori says that hands and links with psychic life ... the intelligence of the child will reach a certain level without the use of the hand; with the hands, it reaches an even higher level, and the child who has used his hands has a stronger character ... "(2014:215) It is observed in the day-to-day dealings of the Montessori classes that the child who sits in the corner and observes the other children`s.
However, he/she struggles when it comes to managing issues, taking care of things, and dealing with other children. Since he/she did not have enough practice, his / her movements are sloppy. This would be the handwriting and attention level that will be reached by completing the process of tasks conducted individually (2014:8).
Here, Montessori (2014:37) emphasizes the importance of the role played by the hands. She says, "He (child) becomes a man through his hands, through his experience, first through play, then through work.
Hands are the instruments of human intelligence. And through experience, he becomes a man. ".
Physical normality deviations such as hare-clip, clubfoot, hunchback, and so on. They are easy to notice because they are the result of some visible malformation. Whereas the deviations from the normality of thought are not so obvious.
According to Montessori, the growing child has two streams of energy. The strength of the mind and the physical energy. Mental strength is intellect and willpower. Physical energy is the energy of the body, that is, the energy of the muscles or voluntary movements.
These "two aspects of the psyche, mind, and body should never be considered separate" (Standing, 1998:170). Their cohesion brings peace and establishes normality, and when they do not function together and disintegrate, they lead to deviations.
Deviations are made in three cases. One, when the child has the will to act, but his movements are inhibited, two, the adults will, needlessly, replace that of the child, and third, when the children are abandoned and left on their own. There are several types of variations in childhood.
Montessori says that it is easier to describe an intact vase than how many pieces it splits into (Gupta, nd). There are two different classes of variations. Deviations deemed pathological by child psychologists, including deception, timidity, quarrelsomeness, gluttony, paranoia of different kinds, stammering, chaotic and disruptive gestures, constant defiance, and so on.
Apart from this, there are some other features that Montessori considers to be deviations that most people consider to be normal. Among them are possessiveness, over-belief, relentless questioning without pause for a response, intense attachment to another person, and the lack of focus that many psychologists consider an integral characteristic of childhood is also one of the deviations (Standing 1998:172).
The solution for all these variations is just one – standardization through practice. When a disorderly child joins the Montessori world, equilibrium sets in and begins to restore normality (Standing 1998:173). Montessori gives an analog of crystal formation and the formation of personality.
In the Montessori classroom, the child has the freedom to choose an activity. Out of so many activities, he chooses only a specific activity because the law of development drives him. The inner teacher is guiding him to do something that the teacher, however good she may be, is not meant to interfere with.
The boy, while interacting with an activity chosen by himself, does it again and again and is completely engaged. This total participation leads to concentration. A peace of mind where the physical and emotional forces are together.
Montessori says, "Internal mental calm and lack of disruption are necessary for the establishment of correct ideas of the mind" to build the creation of personality, as it is important to keep a saturated solution still and unmoved to form crystals of perfect shape.
What would happen if the answer is shaken? Either the crystals are not formed or the shapes are distorted. In the same way, obstruction of the child`s performance of regular cycles of activity causes malfunctions in the character or defect of the child`s thinking (Montessori 1966:72-73).
Published by- Atheneum Global
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