This post is by regular contributor Kate Gribble of An Everyday Story.
How To Raise An Amazing Child the Montessori Way was one of the first parenting books I read which really resonated with me. It made me see differently, more clearly, and was my first introduction to the Montessori Method.
The book encourages you to see the world from the child’s view, introducing you to the child-sized, beautiful environments Montessori is renowned for the world over.
Montessori is more than the ‘prepared environment’ though. It talks about bringing the child to the world and the world to the child. Being in nature, experiencing its beauty, taking time to observe and remembering always to follow the child; follow their interests and their pace.
“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”~ Maria Montessori
A mossy rock, the busyness of an ant nest, the glittery trail of a snail, it’s out in nature that we can truly experience the intricacies of this world around us. And it’s not just the natural world; the buzz of a subway station, the sound of the train as it approaches, the smell, the behaviour of people, all learnt in a single moment. First hand. Naturally.
We try to have our children, Jack (4yrs) and Sarah (2yrs) spend time outdoors everyday. Whether it’s a walk in the bush, a play by the creek, a stroll along the lake, geocaching or just in the yard. This time spent outdoors is invaluable to their development. They are not only learning about the many wonders in our local area, they are also developing a connection with and sense of stewardship towards our environment.
Jack and Sarah love this time too, out in the fresh air, there is always something new and interesting to discover. They ask questions, collect treasures, take photos, draw pictures and just take time to ponder.
So head outside and get amongst the living things. You don’t need to plan any activities, just allow the time to watch and wonder.
How do you spend time in nature?