I am delighted to be sharing with you a series of interview about Montessori Families…
Today, I'm introducing you to a new feature on my blog. I see Montessori as a way of life. The name of my business has always been Montessori-family as I am convinced that every family can benefit from the Montessori education. And every family will use Montessori in its own way.
To start this series, let me introduce you to Freyja and her son Joseph. Freyja took my parenting course more than 2 years ago and she is now one of the moderators of our Montessori FB group. Follow her Montessori journey on Instragram.
My name is Freyja, I live with my husband and our 3 year old son in Manchester, UK.
I was previously a mainstream primary school teacher, and have taught all the way from Nursery to Y6. Lately, I have left teaching to embark on a new journey of opening a piano hire business and homeschooling my son.
I love sewing, tennis, and music. I am terrible at gardening and cooking but am working on getting better at these!
I always knew vaguely about Montessori but didn't properly embark on our Montessori journey until my son was around a year old. I think it was seeing beautiful set ups and learning about having fewer toys that inspired me to research deeper. I came across this Montessori group and took Carine's Discipline course, and swiftly afterwards took her parenting course. I was hooked.
I love the idea of having a slower more intentional life (although putting it into practice is hard for me).
I think I was always a 'gentle parent' in terms of Discipline. I have learnt not to reward and say 'good boy' all the time... A journey I'm still on because change is hard!
My home environment has definitely changed. A lot of it is planned with my son in mind to promote independence.
I know to observe more now and don't interrupt concentration unless he looks at me for input.
I don't think I regret anything... Most stuff I have sourced 2nd hand so financially it hasn't been a big commitment.
There have definitely been things that I've bought that haven't been needed.
I hacked the Ikea Kura bed into a floor bed when actually in hindsight my son was old enough to climb on by himself so I could have just left it.
I bought a huge bundle of 2nd hand proper Montessori materials to use some and some... and have realised that although nice to have - not essential 🙂
Any small version of practical life items:
Small spray bottle
Small cloths/sponge/scrubbing implement
Small glass to drink out of
Small jug for pouring
A wavy chopper
Small dustpan and brush
For more academic items:
I love the maths beads, and the golden beads.
Sandpaper numbers and letters (easy DIY)
I'm really looking forward to using the moveable alphebet when Joe gets older.
Realistic play items - for example get real equipment for a doctors set.
Realistic figures/pictures of animals for language and matching games.
Oh... And of course the Montessori family subscription box 😉
I'd say we follow our child *within limits*.
We allow for independence and let the child learn at their own pace. I'd also add that we don't use punishments or rewards and embrace emotions.
We are planning to homeschool for the early years and then take it from there.
We haven't really got a plan as such but are allowing space for free play, trying to get out in nature more and having Montessori materials to aid learning as and when it happens.
If/when my son goes to school we will keep the environment at home so it promotes independence, and we will follow his interests at home.
I love 'The Montessori Toddler' by Simone Davies. It's a beautiful book to read with easy to digest information.
Other go to books include:
Simplicity Parenting - Kim John Payne
How to talk so kids will listen and listen so Kids will talk - Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
Teaching Montessori in the home, the pre-school years - Elizabeth Hainstock
Dr Montessori's own handbook - Maria Montessori
Podcasts I listen to:
The Montessori Toddler
The art of parenting
Parenting with Play
Tackle one thing at a time, don't compare your child to other children or compare yourself to what other parents do - beware of social media for these reasons 🙂
I love helping to support parents who have just started their Montessori journey and love learning from those who are more experienced/officially trained in Montessori education.
In reading and answering questions it acts as a reminder to me and keeps me on track with my own parenting.
Thanks you so much for answering those questions!
I hope the interview was an inspiration for you all!
Carine Robin is a a mother of 2 children. She raises them the Montessori way. Originally from Belgium where she worked as a child psychologist for several years, Carine spent 6 years in Ireland before settling in in the UK. She qualified as a Montessori teacher 10 years ago and has since worked as Montessori teacher and preschool manager. She founded Montessori-family in 2011 to provide opportunities for parents to discover Montessori. She believes that it’s truly possible to implement the Montessori ideas at home to make your house and family life welcoming to your child, her needs and her thrive for independence. She offers parents & babies classes, toddlers playgroups; Montessori home designs, one to one support, parenting classes and online courses.
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