Here the article I had published in Juno Magazine, Winter edition 2014 I’m a Montessori…
How much "Montessori" do you do at home?
Is Montessori only the activities on a tray? The practical life? The Montessori "materials"?
Montessori is a way of life and your child needs more than some specific branded Materials.
Montessori activities on a tray are probably the less your child does over the day.
Maybe, you focus more "naturally" on everyday life like cooking, cleaning, helping around, and learning skills that promote independence!
Maybe your child is in a sensitive period to language and all day long, you talk and read books.
Or your child goes to a Montessori preschool so when he comes back home, he wants to play with his "flashy" toys or build stuff with his siblings.
Montessori is so much more than what we think is "Montessori".
The way you respect your child, the way you observe your child, what you offer to your child is not limited to the shelf, to the branded materials, to the 3 parts cards.
You can have 100% of that or none of that. You can have some fantasy, some plastic, some "I will never have that in my classroom but at home, why not" and you would still "do Montessori at home".
So just for fun, I evaluated how much of each category, my children were doing when they were little:
Practical life and real life with me was taking up the biggest part of our days. They would follow me around, emptying the laundry basket, helping me to cook, transporting cans from the boot of the car to the pantry, ...
Then, talking with me was the other constant. And it still is! My son has constantly something to share with us, a question to ask and loves above all to read books.
Playing by themselves and pretend play with open-ended ressources or their toys (Montessori friendly and not so Montessori aligned) was another big part of their day.
The Montessori activities on tray are part of that category as they had free access to them. The part when I was presenting them or "working with them" was less important in term of time but impactful in term of learning. I wouldn't be too worried if the amount spent on those activities is less than on the others. It's quite normal and your children learn in different ways all day long!
And of course, this is also Montessori:
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