Friday, September 11, 2020

Why is Learning Through Nature So Successful?

Why is Learning Through Nature So Successful?

Why is Learning Through Nature So Successful? - Montessori daycare - Montessori West

Authentic Montessori daycare foster a love of nature and the environment. Maria Montessori observed that people are becoming further and further removed from intimate involvement with nature. Instead of spending time in the forests, on the beaches, and climbing the mountains, we are more and more content to see those things from a distance and tend to a small plot of ground around the home. She sought to address the separation of people from the natural world by giving children access to as much nature as she could.

Concrete Vs Abstract

Daycare children learn better by doing than being told. It is one thing to be told that a plant grows out of the soil, but it is a completely different experience to nurture a seedling and care for the plant until it produces a flower or a vegetable. By providing children with the tools and ability to work directly with living things, the Montessori Method teaches the connection between abstract concepts and the natural world. By caring for nature, we discover that we are part of nature.

Learning Through Doing

Providing young children with tools and activities that they can wrap their hands-- and minds-- around gives them an incentive to want to learn and do. Learning with hands-on activities is at the very foundation of Montessori education, and there is no better example of it in action than to watch children “playing” at a real-world goal like growing plants.

We Are the World

Through hands-on activities like sorting leaves by type of tree, or counting wildflowers children discover that nature is all around them, all the time. This is especially beneficial for the smaller kids, because of the vast assortment of textures, colors, and scents provided by interaction with nature. 

Maria Montessori pointed out that nature is important in many ways, culturally, physically, and intellectually. Simply exploring the variety of plants or insects in the yard is an engaging way to spend time with small children. It opens their minds to the bounty of the world and gives them real-world opportunities to learn everything from counting to language and the arts.

Monday, September 7, 2020

How to Instill Confidence in Toddlers at Home

How to Instill Confidence in Toddlers at Home

How to Instill Confidence in Toddlers at Home - daycare - Montessori West

Just as your daughter is given a “can-do” attitude in daycare, you can help build confidence at home. This starts by simply spending time at her level. Participating in her activities and games with enthusiasm shows her that what she does matters to you. And that is the start of a positive attitude you can expand on.

Encouragement Over Discouragement

Teaching daycare children confidence begins by believing that you can accomplish your goals. As Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can't – you're right.” It is of the utmost importance to encourage your children to try and then try again. Success is always on the horizon for those who are willing to attempt things one more time.

The Importance of Inclusion

Helping do small jobs in the yard, helping prepare dinner, and being asked for opinions on various matters are all important for both the confidence doing those things entails and the feeling of inclusion they instill. If your child is always left out of the current activities she will develop an attitude of being an outcast that will make it difficult to take chances and show initiative as she gets older.

Appropriate Responsibilities

Your daughter may not be ready to do the laundry, but she is capable of taking on small responsibilities like watering the flowers, feeding the family pet, picking up behind herself, and much more. By establishing a routine of regular household activities for your daughter, you show her that you have faith in her abilities to achieve goals, and your confidence will be contagious. 

Look for opportunities to praise your child for a job well done, whatever that job may be. Remember, she only has a handful of years in this world, and her experiences so far are few. By showing her that what she does is important to you, you are also teaching her that doing things will gain favor with other people, and that will give her the confidence to try instead of being caught in the web of what she thinks she cannot do.