In Eva's Words
“We have to watch ourselves most carefully. The real preparation for education is a study of one’s self. The training of the teacher who is to help life is something far more than a learning of ideas. It includes the training of character; it is a preparation of the spirit” (Maria Montessori, Absorbent Mind)
Two years ago, I stepped in the Montessori classroom for the first time -- I looked around with amazement and thought, “what a stimulating place”. When I started to work at Little Gems Montessori, I brought with me my love for children, the determination to assist in the best way I can and to learn more about the Montessori practice. Soon enough, I realized that there is a lot going on behind the scenes of a prepared environment and a Montessori practitioner. I felt that without the training I would not understand the pedagogy that was rooted at the heart of this school.
The studies were eye opening for me on many levels; I realized that it is much more than learning a teaching method. To truly study the Montessori method is to embark on a life-changing journey which changes one’s perspective towards the child’s inner life, education and world itself, as well as a huge shift inward towards yourself too. Training our own character and working with our own spirit has to happen in order to truly prepare ourselves for being the role model and guide for the children.
While on the course I have studied child development, the absorbent mind, how the children absorb their social world, the great importance of the prepared environment and its impact on children’s self formation. The apparatus workshop was hugely important as it helped me realize how sophisticated the materials are and how much they help to a child in cognitive refinement of social skills, emotional growth, and physical coordination. The holistic curriculum allows the child to experience joy through their learning, develop self-esteem and build their knowledge through hands on experience.
Studying Montessori pedagogy helped me to become a better teacher, parent and generally a more understanding and empathic person. I have had great support from my colleagues, my mentor and my tutors, who keep inspiring and advising me through this amazing learning journey. That being said, the most important teachers I have met are those I work with everyday -- the children. Their open hearts, thirst for understanding the world around them, dedicated concentration and pride which they take after each accomplishment is such an inspiration and I am honoured to be a part of their lives.
Eva is the Support Montessori Teacher in the Jade classroom at Little Gems Montessori Larnaca, where she works closely alongside Natasha & Emma. She is currently enrolled on the EYE Diploma at MCI London, where she is predicted to complete in Summer 2017. Good luck!