Blog: Creating a Montessori Learning Environment at Home

 Montessori parenting expert and our Montessori in the Home trainer Emma Wong Singh explains how you can create a Montessori learning environment in your own home.

The Montessori approach is about responding to human’s natural development and as Montessori parents and caregivers we support our children to develop physically, emotionally, mentally and socially for themselves. Here are some ideas for creating a Montessori learning environment and offering Montessori activities and approaches at home:

1. We prepare our home to make space for our child’s smaller but valued self by making it easy for them to actively participate in the housework. This contributes to their sense of self-worth and supports and refines the coordination of their movements.

2. We offer our child a wide variety of developmentally-appropriate activities first, to see where their interests lie. Which activities do they choose again and again? How can we extend the activity to offer a greater challenge? The greatest respect we can give them is to offer further challenge after a job well-done, instead of blanket praise or a reward.

3. We establish a routine and a consistent (so therefore predictable) environment for our young child. The order they see and experience in their daily life then serves to help better internalise the order they are creating mentally. A well-ordered mind lends itself naturally to clear, logical thinking.

4. From birth, we offer our child one activity at a time, so as to encourage them to focus their attention on a single set of movements. Giving less, not more, allows our child to find what they are interested in and so seek or be offered, further challenge. It is via activities that interest them and the associated challenges that they have the opportunity for more practice and further refinement of the skills involved.

5. Contact with reality is all the magic a young child needs. We open our child to the wonders of nature by pausing to listen to the rustle in the trees from a breeze or to watch the scurrying ant cross our path. Slowing our steps and walking, listening and watching at our child’s pace, reveals the wonders of nature through the fresh eyes of our child. As parents if we see the magic in our world, then our child will too.

These are just some of the approaches we look at on our Montessori in the Home courses suitable for parents, family members and professionals such as midwives, childminders/nannies and anyone interested in Montessori in the home environment. These short online courses focus on key development stages – antenatal and the first year, from birth to three years and from three to six years. Students on the course also interact with each other and raise issues encountered in their own parenting or work.

Emma Wong Singh (AMI 0-3 and 3-6) has worked as a teacher in the Children’s House (3-6 years); run Montessori parent-toddler groups and was Chair of the Montessori Society AMI (UK) for ten years.