Montessori Madmen

Advocating Montessori

We're an impatient, ragtag group of dads and advocates from around the world, united by a common zeal to bring the Montessori method to millions more. Our mission is simple: to advocate for Montessori education so that one day it's not called Montessori school; it's just called school.

Montessori: coming to a home near you—or yours!

The MadMen recently came across the ebook "Montessori At Home!", by John Bowman, a gorgeous, almost encyclopedic, ebook with incredible visual detail and helpful tips for parents in how to bring Montessori principles into the home. As we are always interested in reaching more parents and inviting them to experience Montessori for themselves, we asked John to write a guest blog talking about the book and about Montessori in the home. Here is his post.

Montessori: coming to a home near you – or yours!

A worldwide movement is underway. Low shelves with cool learning materials are appearing in homes everywhere. Moms and Dads are educating themselves on the critical importance of their children’s early years. Viewing blogs and using new resources, parents everywhere are bringing Montessori into their homes. They are finding this proven approach to optimizing early childhood development to be accessible and easy to implement. Parents who do not have access to a Montessori preschool, or cannot afford one, are doing Montessori At Home!

Earlier in life, I found great joy in creating new Montessori preschools. I strongly encourage every parent who has a Montessori school for their 3-6 year old available near them, and can afford it, to check it out and place your child there if possible. The positive changes in young children when they have access to these environments are striking. If Montessori school is not an option, however, you can offer your child many of the same experiences right at home.

Dr. Maria Montessori was a visionary genius. She overhauled the way we view young children, and invented the field of early childhood education. Montessori created an enormous body of work in an incredibly productive life. Unlike many brilliant people, Montessori did more than write words that primarily offer intellectual stimulation. She developed an extremely practical approach to helping children develop to their true potential – the Montessori Prepared Environment. An unspoken ‘secret’ of Montessori is that a prepared environment works even if you don’t completely understand how and why. All you have to do is put things out there and let children choose and use them freely, with a few simple rules to guide their interactions. The rest happens on its own. It is a beautiful thing.

Parents who are not trained Montessori teachers can offer their children many of the experiences of a Montessori school, right at home. Montessori offers excellent, practical parenting ideas parents can implement before they ever make or buy a learning material. Once comfortable with the process, simple items can be used to create beautiful materials that engage children’s attention and develop their skills. A small table and chair gives a child a place to work. A simple set of low shelves displays a child’s home learning materials as special items deserving of respect. Parents are fully capable of understanding what they need to know, and of doing Montessori activities successfully at home.

Here’s an offer: download a copy of the Montessori At Home! eBook, read the early chapters, and follow the Quick Start Guide. If you are not able to create your first cool learning material and give it to your child to use in 2 days, let me know and I will refund the $10.95 purchase price. The very parent-friendly Montessori At Home! eBook has:

  • 575 full size, full color pages;

  • Clear early chapters on Maria Montessori & Early Childhood Education, the Neuroscience of Early Childhood Development, Using Montessori Principles in Parenting, Using Early Learning Materials at Home, and answers to FAQ’s;

  • Descriptions and photos of well over 300 early learning materials and activities, most of which can be made using common items, in the areas of Practical Life, Sensorial, Art & Music, Digital Life, Science, Math, and Reading & Writing;

  • Hundreds of links to blogs, sites, and videos expanding on the information in the eBook, creating a virtual course in early childhood education for parents and saving parents a hundreds of hours of research;

  • Recommendations for many commercial early learning materials, and over 225 digital tablet apps to support and extend a child’s learning and show parents how to use digital learning appropriately with preschoolers;

  • Complete reading and math sequences that enable parents to start at the beginning and, having fun all along the way, take their child from the first experiences all the way to reading and doing 2-3rd grade level math;

  • Many pages of free printables to use with the many of the activities;

  • A copy of the eBook, Mom Bloggers Talk Montessori: Favorite Activities and Ideas, to give you inspiration and support.

You can spend months educating yourself about Montessori, gathering and organizing ideas, and getting started. Or, you can get Montessori At Home!, get the picture quickly, and start right away. I have worked to distill all the essential information about Montessori in one eBook that will guide you every step of the way. Over 4000 parents all over the world are using this resource and working with their children. Check it out.

I encourage all parents of young children to use their preferred resources and help their children develop a positive self-image, a love of learning, and skills that translate into early success in school – the best way to ensure success all the way through.

John Bowman is the author of the Montessori At Home! eBook, the paperback, Help Your Preschooler Build a Better Brain, and on iBooks: Teach Your Preschooler to Read Using the iPad. He can be reached for comments, questions, and to support parents, at: jbowmanbooks@gmail.com