I’m sure this reading malarkey must be bad for my health, I’ve even gone a bit retro read this time!
I’ve been talking a lot lately about the influences of other people, particularly after reading the A – Z of the Curiosity Approach and the melting pot of influential educational theorists that provided their inspiration for such a creative and child-led method.
One of their influences also happens to be one of mine, the brilliant (and dare I say it?) ahead of her time (I said it!) Dr Maria Montessori.
She was a brilliant woman, initially training as a doctor of medicine before devoting her life to the education of children. She was fascinated and led by child development and spent a great deal of her time observing children and their behaviours to formulate a method around their stages of development and the learning that can take place.
I was particularly inspired by a paragraph at the start of this book:
“And so I say that any reform of education must be based upon the development of the human personality. Man himself should become the center (sic) of education. And it must be remembered that man does not develop only at the university: man starts his development from birth and before birth” (Montessori, 1949)
Her influence is still prescient today in Early Learning and Childcare even if your setting isn’t Montessori based. When we use items to provoke learning then there is a hint of Montessori. How about encouraging the children with self-help skills? This is a core of Monessori’s method and one which we embrace without a second thought. As I mentioned before, I’ve always had a minor interest in her methods and work so now’s the time to find out more.
Who’s your educational influence?