Montessori and Play Based Learning
" Play is the work of a child." - Maria Montessori
Play in a layman's term means : " An activity engaged in for enjoyment and recreation rather than a serious or practical purpose". Play for parents means letting their children go out in the open and play a sport or a game. Indoor play could be playing board games or playing with toys. It means enjoying in the fields and outdoor, hanging from trees and playing in mud.
Dr. Maria Montessori observed that the children learnt better through play. Children have a very short attention span and if they are given something which interests them , then they focus on it and learn independently. She believed that the traditional method of learning from text books is not beneficial for their overall growth. She was a strong believer of children learning from self discovery and without a direction of teacher. A teacher should act a guide and guide children when needed.
Montessori toys are designed in such a way that a children learns something from each toy. There are rods, beads , puzzles, blocks and lots of other open ended toys specifically designed for their holistic development.
Through Montessori method of education, Dr. Maria emphasized :
The traditional method of education can be monotonous and boring. Play is fun, engaging and children can use their own innovation to create a lot of things.
Play brings in a lot of freedom for the child to create on his own. It involves a lot of thinking and patience whereas in traditional teaching, the child doesn't have to think at all. The teacher provides the notes and the child has to follow the teacher's instructions.
Learning through play motivates children to create something on their own. They learn to create their own processes of what they are doing along the way. This helps to improve their cognitive skills and patience. In traditional learning, the children learn whatever the teacher tells them to learn. They do not use their own innovation to create something new.
The children are given the freedom to move around freely and choose their work stations. The different activities are set up by the teachers, for eg. sensory bins, kitchen set, wooden toys, puzzles, blocks. The child has the freedom to choose what he wants to work with everyday. The Montessori method also gives the freedom to the child either to work individually or in groups.
Learning through play helps them in developing their social skills too. The child is allowed to interact with his peers and can also get motivated to work better by seeing his peers.
Montessori method of education allows children develop their problem solving skills too. If a child makes an error, he tries to rectify himself rather than wait for the teacher to do it for him.
Learning through play opens a lot of horizons for children. It teaches them to become independent and confident individuals which helps them in the future too.
‘This post is a part of Blogchatter Half Marathon.’