Thursday, November 11, 2010

Quickie Advice: Montessori Home Schooling

A few weeks ago I received an email from a reader asking me for a few pointers on where to start with Montessori home schooling. She also happens to have 6 children like me! Time can be pretty scarce around here with the new baby and homeschooling, but I was able to write back with a quick email that I am sharing with you below. It is not extensive, but will give you some practical advice in a minute or two if you are new to this. Take a look:

"As far as just starting out, everyone's situation is different and will affect the extent of Montessori education they can provide for their children at home. There is such a thing as providing a Montessori education using all of the materials, and on the other hand simply implementing a Montessori mentality in day to day home life. If you are interested in homeschooling using the Montessori method, I would suggest to plan on starting next school year. This will give you time to read up on Montessori and buy albums that will give you the lessons you will need to teach. During this time you can also start making room for a Montessori classroom area in your home and also room to store the materials you will be rotating.

Summary so far:
Wait to start for one year.
Create 2 spaces in your home: One for learning in with shelves and tables, the other for storing materials that will be rotated throughout the school year.

Spend your free time (with six kids I know it is hard!), studying Montessori and implementing Montessori ideas in your home. Things we did as far as implementing ideas were letting the children do certain things for themselves, hesitating to interrupt the learning process when they are working at something, giving them more opportunities to help the family around the home, realizing that each child is an individual.

If by about March or April you are still interested in doing Montessori in the home, then I would suggest you could start ordering the materials you will need.

You could even decide that you don't want to go all the way Montessori with all the subjects, not because you don't like Montessori, but because it takes a lot of time to study them as the teacher, etc. and realistically as a mother of 6 it may be a challenge to accomplish! You could just decide now or in a few months to just implement Montessori math next school year. Then you could spend your time studying up on that and saving money."

I hope to add more to this soon. For now, I'm off to serve lunch!

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