Dr. Montessori keeping the needs of the requirements of early childhood in mind prepared an environment where the children become self-dependent and confident.
The environment in the Montessori classroom brings out the true nature of the child.
The Prepared Environment of a Montessori Classroom
There are three main components of the Prepared Environment of the Montessori method:
- the pupil
- the environment itself
- the teacher
The interactions between these three components along with Montessori philosophy and technology help children achieve holistic development.
Montessori education lays heavy emphasis on sensorial training and the use of concrete materials to facilitate the education required for sensory training. The Montessori Prepared Environment helps children become aware of their capabilities and knowledge.
Six Principles of the prepared environment:
The Montessori classroom environment is based on six key principles that help facilitate education that promotes Hands-on learning and builds up the child’s inner confidence.
These six principles are –
- Freedom: Montessori method encourages children to make their own choices. The children have the freedom to explore, move around and interact with other pupils as well as the surrounding environment.
- Structure and order: With freedom comes responsibility. Children need to have a systematic and structured environment that helps them think rationally about the outcomes and develop confidence, reasoning skills, and a balanced perception of the world and its outcomes
- Beauty: The environment of a Montessori classroom should be inviting and engaging. The pupils in the classroom should have a sense of order, comfort, harmony, and peace.
- Nature and reality: According to Montessori, nature should act as a medium of inspiration for children. The Montessori method promotes outside activities and promotes the use of toys made with natural materials like wood, cotton, bamboo, metal, and glass.
- Social Environment: Along with cognitive and physical development, The Montessori method promotes the development of social skills and basic manners in children. Children have the freedom to socialize with other children at their own pace and become socially aware.
- Intellectual Environment: After combining all the five principles, the teacher is able to create a space of learning where the curriculum and development of the child can flourish. In an intellectual environment, the children are provided with all the appropriate activities, materials, and apparatus that promote cognitive intelligence in young minds.
How is the Montessori Prepared Environment Beneficial for the child?
Amongst being fully acquainted with the six principles of the Montessori Prepared environment, one can say that the principle of prepared environment was developed by keeping a child’s individualistic needs in mind.
Children for the first six years of their life have an Absorbent Mind and need a specifically designed environment to eliminate all the necessary stimuli that may become an obstruction for the child during their educational process.
These six key principles of the Montessori Prepared Environment often provide the child with all the vital factors to help them become seekers of knowledge. While the minimalistic decor, soft lighting, and child-sized furniture make the child feel comfortable, the Montessori Materials, activities, designated learning stations to help bring out intellectual changes in the child.
Hence we can say that the unique aspect of Prepared Environment in the Montessori Method of education is a harmonious fusion between education, liberty, and fun for the developing minds.