My Life Assignment

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“The environment necessary for the development of language can be enhanced to structure the child from birth to 6 years . How is language encouraged in the Montessori nursery class? Introduction; Language is defined as the system of sounds and works used by humans to express their thoughts and feelings. Language can be in written or spoken form. Languages, in the form of written volumes, contain the accumulated knowledge and experience of mankind in relation to every art and science. (What you should know about your child, Ch-8, Pg-28).

The newly born child is different from the point of view of heredity from the newly born mammals. The mammals inherit is bodily from precisely to suit the functions it has to perform in life. They are very adaptable to the environment. Man is different/ Man is in fact the only species capable of indefinite evolution in the activities in the outer world. From this flows the development of civilization. Instead of being born possessed of them, he has to absorb them from outside him. (Basic ideas of Montessori’s Educational Theory, Ch-3, Pg. 58). The Language for example.

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The child is not born with a predetermined language but with potential to learn. The development of language in a child is not gradual or uniform. First he will in all the different sounds in his environment through the processing of listening but he will not speak a word. Suddenly, the child is able to utter a few syllables, then his first word, then names of objects or things around him. Gradually, more works and names and later to making of sentences. Besides, listening, a child is also taking in impressions of speech by observing the adult’s mouth and lip movements.

All these impressions from sight and hearing are stored in child’s subconscious mind. Dr. Montessori called it the “Absorbent Mind. ” At a certain point of time, a special sensitivity appears during the child’s mental development. It is during this time that consciousness has come too birth and began to take control. This special sensitivity is called the sensitive periods. This absorbent mind does not construct with a voluntary effort, but accordingly to the lead of “inner sensitivities” which we call “sensitive periods” as the sensitivity lasts only for a definite period, i. e.

Until acquisitions to be made according to the natural development has been achieved. (Basic ideas of Montessori Theory, Ch-3, Pg-59). Communication between the children and the adult are always appreciated. Natural conversation with the child is essential, since it gives experiences with applied language principles. Our conversation with the child is interactive-rather than directive. Open-ended questions make it possible for the child to respond. The child discovers that his thought stimulates a response. The question and answer pattern, which his so much part of conversation is used.

There will be small group of conversations, which offer the child opportunity to listen and respond at thru appropriate time. Dr Montessori felt that a child in his sensitive periods could acquire a particular skill naturally easy, inspiring and alive. Thus she developed her method to take advantage of this power. They are divided into four stages. The first stage is oral and auditory activities. In Montessori classroom, children oral the auditory skills are sharpened through stories read to them, songs, games, poems, finer play and naming activities.

The children are often read to so as to explore the sounds of words and widen their horizon in the real world. There is an unconscious activity that prepares speech, succeeded by a conscious process, which slowly awakens and takes from the unconscious, what it can offer. (The Absorbent Mind, Ch-10, Pg-104). As it is natural for the child to learn to speak by observing and hearing other around him, this is not so for writing and reading. A hearing child living among speaking adults will eventually learn to speak but will not be able to write and read by just seeing other people write and read.

Unlike speaking, writing and reading are not universal or natural human activities; they are instead cultural adaptations of the natural activity of speaking. Speech will develop naturally in the child; as cultural adaptations, writing and reading must be cultivated or taught. (Basic Montessori, Ch-4, pg-132). Montessori approach to education in any area is always indirect, never the direct one of traditional educations. The indirect approach is a way to prepare the child to gain the goal in a positive way with self-assurance, self-confidence, and then he will have a life-long interest in learning.

In practical life activities, the children develop their fine motor skills, concentration, eye-hand coordination and the left to right concept. The sensorial activities aid in tactile, auditory and visual discriminations as well as further refine the children’s motor skills. “A necessary condition for writing is to have what is called a ‘firm hand’, that is a hand under the control of the will. (The Discovery of the child, Ch-15, Page-206). The children are introduced to the insects for the design before any exercises on language.

They set the inset on the pater, trace the outline with the pencil, fill the space within the outline with lines drawn from left to right leaving no white spaces and blurring of the outline. When they have accomplished this, they can change the exercise by superimposing another geometrical shape on the first one and color the different shapes made by the intersecting lines with different color pencils. This exercise not only teaches them to make beautiful designs, it is also trains their muscular co ordinations needed for holding and controlling of the writing instrument.

Like the tactile material in sensorial exercise, the child uses his sense of touch to distinguish the shapes, curves and straight lines of the alphabet made from sandpaper by tracing them. “Two mechanical factors of writing are resolved into tow independent exercises, that is, drawing, which gives the hand the ability to handle the writing instrument, and touch the letters of the alphabet, which serves to establish a motor memory along with a visual memory of the letters. (The Discovery of the Child, Ch-15, Pg-209). The language programme in Montessori involves the use of phonetic.

Phonetic means ‘the sound’ and therefore children learn by learning the sounds of the letters of the alphabets. In the second stage, Dr. Montessori prepares the child to the mechanism of writing and associates the sound with the relative symbol. Here the directress introduces the sand paper letter to the child. She will trace the letter in the fashion of writing and pronounces the phonetic sound of the letter. As such the child obtains an image of the letter in his mind with his visual tactile-muscular senses and the sound of the symbol through his auditory sense. When he sees and recongnises, he reads; when he touches, he writes. {The discovery of child, ch-15, pg216} With the mechanics for writing ready, the attention is now on the method of teaching the written form of language. The child is being introduced to the large movable alphabet to enhance the association of the particular images with the sound. As the letters are movable, it is easy for the directress to correct any mistakes by changing them around and a good means of improving a child’s spelling. A child can find an intense intellectual interest in being able to represent a word by putting together the symbolic symbols of the letters of the alphabet. {The discovery of child, ch -15 pg 217} With the large movable alphabet, the children get familiar with the letters which is necessary before writing and reading. Although the child can make words and sound the symbols, this just writing and not reading. ” By reading, I mean the interpretation of an idea by means of graphic symbols…. A child does not read until he receives ideas from the written word”. The discovery of child,ch-16 ,pg 230}. The third stage introduces reading. The main activity is the presentation of the object boxes. Here ,the child needs to read the name cards and match to the correct objects . Vocabulary is further enriched by providing the children with picture cards with name tags, sheet of pictures and name tags and lots of words either in the list that can be hung around the classroom or in the form of a booklet. Children also learn words with double sounds and phonetic words with more than one syllable.

Later the children are introduced to phonograms with the picture cards. Phonograms are different combination of letters that make different sounds, such as ‘ch’ in ‘chin’ and ‘sh’ in ‘fish’. Then the children are introduced to phonogram family folders. Each folder, in contrast to the individual phonograms. Contains different letter combinations that make the same sound. The children are now ready to be exposed to reading for meaning, the final stage of Montessori approach to teaching language.

Now the child is able to read words quickly and easily enough to comprehend a sentence. The directress will introduce them using the tree-period lesson. They are also being introduced to the capital letter at the start of the sentence and the full stop at the end of it. In addition, the child needs to know the importance of functions of the words and sentence structure. Here the children are taught the early grammar work like noun, adjective, articles and verb. These concepts are first presented in the form of games. Continued exercises serve to give forceful impressions that lead the child to notice the importance of each item in sentence- not only the meaning of each word, but its position in the phrase or sentence. ” (Montessori- A Modern Approach, Ch-5, Pg-136). After all these exploration of word functions, the child is ready to read story books. This is where the children are able to discover the joy of reading that is to comprehend the thought of others. As the child progresses in the reading he also gains new efficiency in his spoken and written language.

He now has all the keys to fully communicate. “Language is the most powerful instrument of human progress. “(What you should know about your child, Ch-8, Pg-28). Language is important to the development of the child because it allows him to communicate with others and understand what others communicate to him. When a child can listen, speak, write and read, he has all the keys of knowledge to explore civilization by himself. When the intelligence of the child is properly developed, it leads the march of civilization through tow great instruments, human language and human hands. When men have to accomplish big tasks of civilization, it is not individuals but communities that do so. In order to be able to accomplish their work, communities have to understand those ideas which other individuals or communities have put forward. Without such mutual understanding and intercommunication through language the great feats of civilization cannot be carried out. ” (What you should know about your child, Ch-11, Pg-46). All these exercises in Montessori education prepare the child of writing and reading, improve his muscular impressions.

Vocabulary, reading fluently and internalized reading. Through all the above exercises, the child has refined his senses, his observation of things has become thorough and fundamentally he changed himself. He finds himself therefore, facing the world with psychic qualities refine and quickened. His powers of observation and recognition have greatly increased. We shall notice that the child has personality which he is seeking to expand; he has initiative, he chooses his own work, persists in it, and changes it according to his inner needs.

Thus we cam conclude that the same course of inner information through which the phenomenon of writing appeared is the course of his future progress, of his growth to perfection. Bibliography ? Maria Montessori : Discovery of the Child ? David Gettman : Basic Montessori ? Maria Montessori : Absorbent Mind ? Gunter Schulz-Benesch: Basic Ideas of Montessori’s Educational Theory ? Maria Montessori : What you should know about your child ? Montessori ,M. , : A Modern Approach

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