7 Things You Should Know About Montessori Homeschooling
Maybe you have been homeschooling for a while now or maybe you were thrown into it due to recent circumstances or maybe you just want to connect with your student and have an impact on their educational journey.
Whatever your situation, we here at Must Be Montessori, want to support you and your child with Montessori-inspired activities that you can do at home. So, we have put together this list of 7 Things You Should Know About Montessori Homeschooling.
Believe it or not, the key to doing Montessori at home is not so much in buying expensive materials, though certain products are worthwhile. Instead, you will find that you can use things you already have to show your student lessons that Dr. Montessori created using the Montessori Philosophy at home.
Number 1: Model, Model, Model
Even in the day-to-day behaviors that we exhibit, our children will follow (indoor voices, walking not running inside, greeting others.) So, too, with the lesson, show your student how to do it using control and measured movements. No need for lengthy explanations. You want them to focus on the process. Make this fun with a game of Mother May I before your first lesson of the day!
Number 2: Value Process Over Outcome
Demonstrate a step-by-step process (as below) in order to enhance your student's mental organization, problem-solving skills and the means to achieving a correct result once the materials become more challenging.
Number 3: Master Economy of Movement
Use controlled and efficient movement as you show the lesson to encourage controlled and efficient behavior, to build concentration and independence. Too many words or steps can be overwhelming and detract from the lesson.
Number 4: Follow the Child
Tailor lessons to the interests of your student. Piqued interest and excitement for a lesson will help keep your student practicing the skill that is the lesson's primary aim. If you are new to Childhood Development, try researching common behaviors and the developmental stage of your student’s age to get some insight into what learning style and activities will suit him.
Number 5: Complete Lessons One At a Time
Model to your student how to return a lesson to a designated place before beginning a different lesson or activity. Bonus: it will teach them how to return their shoes (toys, clothing, tools, etc) to a designated place so they can easily find them when they need them.
Unroll a work mat for floor work or choose a table mat for work at the table.
Choose a lesson to practice and walk carefully to the work mat, holding the material with two hands.
Work with the material and then return it to the tray and to its appropriate location before choosing another activity.
Number 6: Be Curious
Instead of praising your student’s work, ask questions that allow them to reflect on their effort and the result of their work. Not only will this allow them to develop self-evaluation, but they will also rely on that evaluation as they work toward mastery in an academic area. And should they run into a topic or concept that they find challenging, instead of feeling failure because they are struggling and not receiving praise from you, they will be able to evaluate the challenge appropriately without feeling shame.
Number 7: Build Intrinsic Satisfaction Not Reward Junkies
Montessori philosophy shies away from the commonplace sticker reward chart and goodies as motivation for a student’s work. Instead, students are encouraged to feel pride in their work - the result of that work is their reward. Showing off their work to parents, siblings, neighbors, friends, grandma, grandpa, etc., can be a powerful motivator. Try holding an End-of-Quarter Showcase event and invite all of your loved ones to enjoy some snacks and talk to your student about their work.
Once you incorporate these Montessori philosophies in your homeschooling routine, you and your child will begin to practice these normally. You'll be "normalized!" A Montessori characteristic that means that your child understands the process, accepts it and uses it to achieve his best results. Until then, take heart, be encouraged in the effort you are putting forward.
If you enjoyed this article, consider supporting our efforts to bring Montessori into the homes of everyone, with a purchase from our store. The Normalizing Mug filled with your favorite morning brew can certainly help keep you on track! Or how about a Montessori Kid Virtues t-shirt for your young learner to model as they follow their passion in learning?
For additional inspiration, consider subscribing to our weekly, Montessori Homeschooling lesson plan. It's full of engaging and interactive lessons to keep your little one excited!