Montessori is unique in that it can seep into other aspects of your life. The more you know about it, the more you see education and life differently from others. And yes, it’s a truly remarkable thing! Yet, in order to maintain a Montessori lifestyle both in school and at home, consistency is crucial. The more time you devote to Montessori at home, the more your child can practice what they have learned at their Montessori school in Philadelphia.
Whether your child has been in a Montessori program for a few months or years, the most important thing is to make Montessori part of your life outside the classroom. We have tips on how to do just that.
Preparedness is Key
When your child arrives at their Philadelphia Montessori school, they know what to expect: a prepared environment, organized items, and freedom within limits. They also know the schedule throughout the day. This helps children feel more calm throughout the day, because they know what comes next.
Is home different? Keeping everything last minute makes transitioning from one space to the next difficult, and it can put extra burden on you, the parent. Practicing consistency and preparedness will make bringing Montessori into your home much easier.
Develop a routine for every single day. Your child will be more motivated and involved in what’s happening, making your job as a parent less taxing.
How to be a prepared parent:
- Discuss what you plan for the day the night before and that morning
- Let your child know what to expect if big changes are coming, such as the first day at a new school or new semester
- Have your child set out their clothing the night before
- Keep the at-home environment open so your child can prepare themselves for school
- Remember the expectations you have set for the new day and stick with it
What if your child changes their mind? What if expectations aren’t met? Either way, you need to have a calm discussion. Speak respectfully to your child and explain what has or hasn’t changed. Be patient. Encourage them to talk about their feelings but avoid giving them rewards for good behavior.
Effectively Simplifying Your Home
One of the most discussed aspects of a Montessori home is the simplicity. You can look on Pinterest and see playrooms that are neatly organized, clean, bright, and natural. You won’t find electronic devices in those playrooms either. Now, while getting such a pristine playroom together in your home might be impossible, that doesn’t mean foregoing a prepared environment.
You can achieve the same effect with a bit of restructuring. Donate toys your child no longer plays with and keep their favorites. Organize materials at their height, so they can access those items at their leisure. Keep their spaces as open as possible.
Don’t forget to rotate their toys. Limited options might seem boring, but it’s beneficial to your child. They will find the toys that spark their interest and imagination. Offer new books once they have read all the others. Always keep the in-use toys and books where your child can see them rather than heaped in a trunk.
When your child finishes with one toy, teach them to put that item back before doing something else.
Encouraging Concentration At Home
Concentration is a core component in any Montessori school in Philadelphia, including Fishtown Montessori. The curriculum at schools encourages children to finish their work completely before moving on. This is key to help children complete assignments in more advanced topics.
At home, technology and longing periods of screen time subtract from concentration. Limit how long your older child has access to fast-paced technology. Teach them to slow down and finish their tasks or chores. Younger children shouldn’t be exposed to battery-powered devices yet. Let their imagination and motivation to master skills guide their playtime.
Applying Montessori Principles With Household Chores
Learning how to complete household chores is part of the Montessori method. After all, cleaning, cooking, and organizing are all essential life skills. Most of the tasks below are ideal for children under 6 years old, but you can adapt these tasks accordingly.
Teach your child how to make their bed, hang their clothes, sweep up dirt, and organize their toys. Even toddlers are fully capable of this—and they will love learning how to do it all. Keep in mind that these tasks are completed at an at-will basis. You can delegate the task, but let them figure out how they’d like to finish it on their own.
Preparing snacks and cooking is an excellent Montessori task for children. You can let your younger children wash produce, butter toast, measure dry ingredients, blend ingredients, and pour their own water or juice. They can even learn the importance of cleaning up after themselves if they spill milk or crumbs. Older children can wash dishes, clean the kitchen table, and collect trash.
Do you have an outside garden? Animals that need food and water? Your children will love the chance to get outside and learn about planting and tending to flowers, fruits, and vegetables. They will even have a great sense of accomplishment once the flowers bloom or vegetables grow.
Thought-Provoking Questions for the Mind
A creative mind is one that thinks critically. Creativity also fosters independence. You can foster your child’s creativity at home with the following activities:
- Create a story based off the questions “what’s next?”
- Hang artwork at eye level. Ask your child how the picture makes them feel and see if they can make a story or their own inspired art piece
- When learning about or discussing new concepts, check in with your child by asking what they think
- Ask one another “would you rather” questions, such as “would you rather visit the moon or the center of the earth?”
- Voice act characters from stories
- Put on music and dance around the room together or let your child put on a show of their own
Looking For a Philadelphia Montessori School?
Fishtown Montessori has highly rated programs for children in their developmental years. Our friendly and experienced staff is dedicated to preparing your child for a lifetime of success. With our incredible learning environmental, your child will learn skills for home and school, and gain a passion for learning, too. Would you like to learn more about our early childhood or kindergarten programs? Have questions about our school? Give us a call today.