[Olpc-open] [IAEP] Montessori madness...
sverma at sfsu.edu
Mon Oct 12 11:51:16 EDT 2009
On Mon, Oct 12, 2009 at 1:55 AM, Martin Langhoff
<martin.langhoff at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Mon, Oct 12, 2009 at 10:18 AM, Sameer Verma <sverma at sfsu.edu> wrote:
>> I've been reading "Montessori Madness" for a few hours now, and I find
> Another good one is "Montessori Today"
> The funny thing is that since I've been exposed to Bryan Berry's
> poignant "theory" of education, I can't help looking at Montessori and
> thinking that it is excellent, but not because Montessori's approach
> and materials are inherently better.
> It is excellent because
> - Montessori teachers are teachers who are clearly smart and
> passionate about education, and the school environment (principals,
> etc) share the smarts and the passion.
> - Parents sending kids to a Montessori school are smart and
> passionate about education.
> - The group of kids is small and manageable, so the smart and
> passionate teachers can work their magic.
> And that wins. They could teach with computers, or abacuses or post it
> notes or books written in Esperanto. It's all a catalyst that brings
> the 3 (purely human!) elements above together. Indirection. A social
> mind trick.
> Of course, I like most of Montessori's approach. But remove the human
> elements and... poof! it's effects will be gone. Montessori strategies
> in a crowded group with an unenthusiastic teacher have very slim
Indeed. My kid goes to a Montessori (which is why I was reading this
book) but we've seen several M schools around here, where an
indifferent teacher destroys the environment. It reverts to a Pink
Floyd'ish assembly-line of faceless students processed into pink
filler meat (Cue 4:21 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VUhoD3vM9Q).
Interestingly, my current discussions with them are about the
introduction of Sugar in that environment (after-school sessions,
maybe) but they think the kids are too young. They would like for the
kids to be 5 at least...
> Bryan, you need to postulate your theory more formally :-)
Or, become a Maria incarnate...I'm sure a born-again Montessori will
get you tremendous following ;-)
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