Montessori children are unusually adaptable. They have learned to work independently and in groups. Since they’ve been encouraged to make decisions from an early age, these children are problem-solvers who can make choices and manage their time well.
They have also been encouraged to exchange ideas and to discuss their work freely with others. These good communication skills ease the way in new settings.
Research has shown that the best predictor of future success is a sense of self-esteem. Montessori programs, based on self-directed, non-competitive activities, help children develop good self-images and the confidence to face challenges and change with optimism.
|Emphasis on cognitive and social development||Emphasis on social development|
|Teacher has unobtrusive role in classroom||Teacher is center of classroom as “controller”|
|Environment and method encourage self-discipline||Teacher acts as primary enforcer of discipline|
|Mainly individual instruction||Group and individual instruction|
|Mixed age grouping||Same age grouping|
|Grouping encourages children to teach and help each other||Most teaching done by teacher|
|Child chooses own work||Curriculum structured for child|
|Child discovers own concepts from self-teaching materials||Child is guided to concepts by teacher|
|Child works as long as he wishes on chosen project||Child generally allotted specific time for work|
|Child sets own learning pace||Instruction pace usually set by group norm|
|Child spots own errors from feedback of material||If work is corrected, errors usually pointed out by teacher|
|Child reinforces own learning by repetition of work and internal feelings of success||Learning is reinforced externally by repetition and rewards|
|Multi-sensory materials for physical exploration||Fewer materials for sensory development|
|Organized program for learning care of self and environment (polishing shoes, cleaning the sink, etc.)||Less emphasis on self-care instruction|
|Child can work where he chooses, move around and talk at will (yet not disturb work of others); group work is voluntary||Child usually assigned own chair; encouraged to participate, sit still and listen during group sessions|
|Organized program for parents to understand the Montessori philosophy and participate in the learning process||Voluntary parent involvement|