“The child can only develop by means of experience in his environment. We call such experience work”
—Dr. Maria Montessori
Practical Life exercises are the very heart of Montessori education. As young children wash tables, pour liquids, make bubbles, sort items, and clean they are developing their inner aptitude of order, concentration, coordination, and fine motor skills. At the same time they are learning to meet their own needs and care for their environment. Through the experience of helping others the beautiful child begins to develop self-confidence, self-respect and independence. In my opinion, the greatest gift we can give a child is self-esteem. As a child grows and faces his own “world” with self-confidence: “Oh the places you can go!” —Dr. Seuss
Practical Life activities provide the opportunity for purposeful work while assisting in a child’s development. Practical Life “works” are designed to teach children life skills while developing a sense of importance and being needed. Allowing the child to participate in the life he sees going on around him is an act of great respect for and confidence in, the child. A child learns self-control over the movements if the work is real.
“…but I know happiness does not come with things. It can come from work and pride in what you do.”
Through Practical Life there will be ideas for promoting grace and courtesy, control of movement (fine motor), hand-wrist (twisting), finger-hand (grasping), hand-arm control, hand-eye control, control of movement (body management/large motor), care of person, and care of environment. Such wonderful ways to enrich the children while having… “Fun to Flourish”.