About two weeks ago, I introduced Q-ball to her own Montessori closet. I had been waiting for the right time to do this, and it seemed to have presented itself. I had noticed that she was starting to be much more forceful in sharing her opinions- where to sit when we read, what diaper she wanted to wear (she really likes the cow design), what clothes she wanted to wear, and even what she wanted me to wear. Additionally, she regularly cleans up after herself and enjoys helping me with household chores.
Her closet has allowed me to reflect upon the two main principles of Dr. Montessori's approach that drew our family to it in the first place: 1) a child's freedom of choice and 2) a child's amazing ability to master (and enjoy!) practical life skills.
Q-ball has loved selecting her own clothing. It's true- sometimes we change clothes once or twice in a day because it's so exciting. And, sometimes it takes much longer than if I just grabbed a shirt and put it on her. (In cases when we are in a hurry, I help by offering her two choices or quickly closing the closet door after she has selected one shirt.) But, she really enjoys the process and has even started telling me stories about the different shirts or works to describe them with sign language.
Lillard, P.P. & Jessen, L.L.
(2003). Montessori from the start: The child at home, from birth to age
three. Random House: NY.
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