My goal is to welcome children into my home, excite about learning the ‘three R’s, and meanwhile educate them to become conscious environmental citizens. My home has a large yard, a garden, trees, and animals.
The children are encouraged to spend as much time outside as they would like. This helps them become aware of and comfortable in the ecosystem that we live in and encourages to develop their own theories and practices about the way the world really works.
Montessori children are trained to observe. With our prepared outdoor environment, and regular visits to Gemmill Park, we give them the opportunity to use all their senses to observe the real world as it changes through the seasons.
Biology, ecology, construction are three of the ways that humans explore and interpret the natural world. Lessons in these areas take place out-of-doors — in context.
In Canada we are blessed with a beautiful natural environment. Our children apply the “practical life” lessons that are core to Montessori curriculum to the world around them. Some of theses lessons involve hands on activities like weeding and planting a garden, but at other times it means we must observe with patience “taking nothing but pictures, and leaving nothing but footprints”.
Observation then leads the children to ask questions about the world around them, and to use the arts to communicate what they have seen.
When we are outside we are able to be louder, use greater body movement and become more boisterous. The children have the opportunity to dig, build things, run, ride bikes, play ball, hike, ski, snowshoe, sled…
CULTURAL AND HISTORICAL CONTEXTS
Stories help us understand. We have regular outdoor story time that uses our immediate surroundings as inspiration.
Let’s face it. It’s fun to be outside!