Within the Montessori model, one key value is to allow children to let their interests and imagination guide them to decide which activities they want to play with and engage. Children become the drivers of their education. One key aspect of the Montessori model that the center utilizes is creating learning stations with different activities – from playing house, building block construction, molding with clay, speech exercises, motor skill development, storybook reading, and crafts. These stations provide structure within the model while still allowing children to explore their interests.
For children, learning and play go hand-in-hand. As adults, we can sometimes forget how important play is for children in their development. During the workshop tomorrow, parents will be immersed in the classroom and will get to play! For younger children, parents will learn games they can play at home with household items so they do not have to purchase anything. In the Kindergarten class, they will learn the techniques that their children use to spell words. For example, in this photo, parents are using the cut out letters to form words that correspond with the theme for that week.
As we have mentioned in other posts, early childhood is a window of opportunity — prime time for brain development. Staff will stress the importance of parents not only playing with their children, but also engaging in conversation with them. This will reinforce their language acquisition and cognitive development, while at the same time strengthning the attachment bonds between parents and children. In this video, we see how engagement and conversation literally builds the brain’s architecture for future learning. As parents and staff will discuss tomorrow, parents’ roles in their child’s learning is vital. After the workshop, parents will hopefully have more tools they can utilize in supporting their child.
During each parent workshop, we also invite them to do a self-evaluation of how comfortable they feel in applying what they have learned that day. We look forward to learning from them about ways we can improve to better support them and their children.
Tomorrow should be a fun day!