THE MONTESSORI METHOD - online book

Scientific Methods As Applied To Child Education In "the Children's Houses"

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xxxvi
INTRODUCTION
tessori's programme the kindergartner and her assistant should use every effort to incorporate in their work—the valuable training in self-help and independent action afforded in the care of the materials and equipment by the children themselves. This need not be confined to the Montessori apparatus. Children who have been trained to take out, use, and put away the Montessori objects until they are ready for the far richer variety of material in the Froebelian system, should be able to care for it also. Of course if there are children who can return in the afternoon, it would be very interesting to attempt the gardening, which both Froebel and Montessori recom­mend, and the Montessori vase-work.
For the possible scorn of those to whom all compromise is distasteful, the author of this Introduction seeks but one compensation—that any kindergartner who may hap­pen to adopt his suggestion will let him study the results.
As to the use of the Montessori system in the home, one or two remarks must suffice. In the first place, parents should not expect that the mere presence of the material in the nursery will be enough to work an educational miracle. A Montessori directress does no common "teach­ing," but she is called upon for very skillful and very tiring effort. She must watch, assist, inspire, suggest, guide, explain, correct, inhibit. She is supposed, in addi­tion, to contribute by her work to the upbuilding of a new science of pedagogy; but her educational efforts—and edu­cation is not an investigative and experimental effort, but a practical and constructive one—are enough to exhaust all her time, strength, and ingenuity. It will do no harm— except perhaps to the material itself—to have the Mon­tessori material at hand in the home, but it must be used
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