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Winhold Montessori School

“Our Focus Is The Whole Child”

Some Comparisons Of Montessori Education With Traditional Education

Montessori children are unusually adaptable.  They have learned to work independently and in groups.  Since they’ve been encouraged to make decisions from an early age, these children are problem solvers who can make appropriate choices and manage their time well.  They have been encouraged to exchange ideas and discuss their work freely with others.  Their good communication skills ease the way in new settings.

Research has shown that the best predictor of future success is a positive sense of self-esteem.  Montessori programs, based on self-directed, non-competitive activities, help children develop strong self-images and the confidence to face challenges and change with optimism.

Montessori

Emphasis on cognitive structure and social development.

Traditional

Emphasis on rote knowledge and social development.

Montessori

Teacher has unobtrusive role in classroom activity; child is an active participant in learning.

Traditional

Teacher has domain, active role in classroom activity; child is a passive participant in learning.

Montessori

Environment and method encourage internal self-discipline.

Traditional

Teacher acts as primary enforcer of external discipline.

Montessori

Instruction, both individual and group, adapts to each student’s learning style.

Traditional

Instruction, both individual and group, conforms to the adult’s teaching style.

Montessori

Mixed age grouping.

Traditional

Same age grouping.

Montessori

Children are encouraged to teach, collaborate, and help each other.

Traditional

Most teaching is done by teacher and collaboration is discouraged.

Montessori

Child chooses own work from interests and abilities.

Traditional

Curriculum structured for child with little regard for child’s interests.

Montessori

Child formulates own concepts from self-teaching materials.

Traditional

Child is guided to concepts by teacher.

Montessori

Child works as long as she/he wishes on chosen project.

Traditional

Child generally given specific time limit for work.

Montessori

Child sets own learning pace to internalize information.

Traditional

Instruction pace usually set by group norm or teacher.

Montessori

Child spots own errors through feedback from the material.

Traditional

If work is corrected, errors usually pointed out by teacher.

Montessori

Learning is reinforced internally through the child’s own repetition of an activity and internal feelings of success.

Traditional

Learning is reinforced externally by rote repetition and rewards/discouragements.

Montessori

Multi-sensory materials for physical exploration.

Traditional

Fewer materials for sensory development and concrete manipulation.

Montessori

Organized program for learning care of self and environment (polishing shoes, cleaning the sink, etc.)

Traditional

Less emphasis on self-care instruction and classroom maintenance.

Montessori

Child can work where she/he is comfortable, moves around and talks at will (yet disturbs not the work of others); group work is voluntary and negotiable.

Traditional

Child usually assigned own chair; encouraged to sit still and listen during group sessions.

Montessori

Organized program for parents to understand the Montessori philosophy and participate in the learning process.

Traditional

Voluntary parent involvement, often only as fundraisers, not participants in understanding the learning process.