Gables Montessori Blog


The Absorbent Mind is a book written by Dr. Maria Montessori based upon her lectures given at Ahmedabad, during the first Training Course after her internment in India (up to the end of World War II). In this material the educator exposes the unique mental powers of the young child which enable him to construct all the characteristics of the human personality, without teachers or any of the usual aids of education. One of the best known principles of the Montessori Method is “the preparation of the environment” and at this stage of life (under 6 years old), long before the child enters a school, this principle provides the key to the realization of an education from birth, to a real cultivation of a human individual from its very beginning. The greatness of the human personality begins from the birth of man.

Montessori wrote that many scientists and psychologists had made observations of children from 3 hours to the 5th day from birth. Some of them, after having studied children carefully, had come to the conclusion that the first two years are the most important of life. Education during this period must be intended as a help to the development of the psychic powers inherent in the human individual.

About the language Montessori says: “the child of two speaks the language of his parents. The learning of a language is a great intellectual acquisition. Now who has taught the child of two this language? Is it the teacher? Everyone knows that that is not so, and yet the child knows to perfection the names of things, he knows the verbs, the adjectives etc. If anyone studies the phenomenon he will find it marvelous to follow the development of language. It is the whole of our intelligence, our religious sentiment, our special feelings of patriotism and caste that are built during this period of life when no one can teach the child¨. Also she said in her book The Absorbent Mind that psychologists pointed out that if we compare our ability as adults to that of the child it would require us 60 years of hard work to achieve what a child has achieved in these first three years.

And about the teacher role: “education is a natural process spontaneously carried out by the human individual. It is acquired not by listening to words, but by experiences upon the environment. The task of the teacher then becomes not one of talking, but one of preparing a series of motives of cultural activity spread in a specially prepared environment”.

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