Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Montessori Mama





It is one of my parenting motivations. I want my children to be problem-solvers, initiators, creative-thinkers...scientists and artists. I want them to be able to work well with others, navigate group dynamics, and get-the-job done. When I was a middle school teacher I was beginning to notice that the generation of children I was teaching lacked the ability to create. They never lacked the ability to be bored. They wanted to be awed and entertained. There were those rare jewels who could create and think.

I kept reading more and more articles about this generational problem. The experts said it was due to over-programing. So many of the children had been plugged into preschool, Gymboree, soccer camp, riding club etc. (No one freak out, we will be doing some of the listed activities, but all in balance.) Parents want to provide everything for their kids. But in doing so what they provided was no down time. No time for time. No time for kids to have to solve their own problem and be their own entertainment.

That was one reason I wanted to move to the country. I wanted to give my boys space...space for their minds and their bodies. In our little piece of suburbia the temptation to "program" was too great.

I'm seeing fruits of my Montessori parenting style. The boys decided to dismantle the soccer goals that Daddy had built for them and experiment with water and water pressure. They had a "blast" building pipes in all manner and form. The got excited to see how long they could build the pipes and still be able to shoot acorns through the system of pipes.

This was hours of entertainment. Real-life connections were made in their brains. Now when they sit in a classroom the scaffolding has already begun. I love it!

7 comments:

Doug said...

is that both your boys? our a friend two?

Doug said...

Is that your boys? our with a friend?

Rebekah said...

Two boys plus a cousin.

Heidi Pender said...

Interesting that the "suburban" cousin had no trouble initiating the creative play ;)

Rebekah said...

Oh he is such a "country" boy in his soul. We are always remarking how much fun that Cole has and would have here since he is able to create in whatever space he's in.

Carrie said...

Good stuff! I think Jack would have a good time with your boys....he is quite the engineer at heart. The things he rigs around here to get something to do what he wants it to....sometimes a little dangerous!

The other day he rigged the playroom door so that Molly couldn't close it....using a chair and a jump rope. I am anxiously waiting for the cooler weather when we can spend the mornings outside.

heather said...

When my boys were in preschool their teacher often mentioned that she has seen a definite decline in kids knowing how to engage in imaginary play. She said as the years passed she noticed more and more kids expected to be entertained or didn't know what to do with certain toys that required imagination.

It is a huge priority to me to make sure my kids get regular time to just play, create, explore and engage with their environment. That is a major task of childhood and it is so important! Kids develop many skills and qualities during time like that.