The Practical life section of a toddler or primary classroom is thought to be the most important area in the Montessori classroom. It is through these materials that the young child develops the self-confidence, control and concentration essential for mastery of the other more advanced areas of the classroom.
Children are naturally drawn to this area of the room because these materials are more familiar to them, offering a feeling of security and well-being.
The activities will offer objects and materials that are normally encountered in the everyday living experiences of the child's culture. Most of the presentations in practical life will fall into four main categories:
Grace and courtesy,
Care of self,
Control of movement,
Care of the environment.
Often these presentations are misunderstood by parents who can resent having their child use a mop or clean a table. That is why it is important for administration or teachers to explain the benefits of this area of the classroom to the parents.
Purpose of Activities
1. To develop and perfect muscle control and coordination through organization of movement.
2. To develop a sense of physical and mental order through exactness in use of objects and working in definite sequence.
3. To develop understanding through control of the environment resulting in a sense of dignity and self-cnfidence, joy in completiong tasks, and generation of social feeling among the children in the classroom.
4. To develop concentration and persistence through focusing of attention on play/work, thus allowing independence and self-reliance to be achieved.
5. To establish the procedure for choosing work after a lesson has been placed on the shelf and returning materials to their proper place on the shelves.
6. To establish respect for other's work by learning that materials are never taken from another child but only from the shelves.
7. To establish the joy and foundation for serving others.
8. To establish a foundation for being responsible for your own mistakes in life. Practical Life has many specialty furnitures. Click here to learn more about what they are.