CISM Foundation for Montessori Education
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COURSE OVERVIEW

The course emphasizes the psychological reality of language in the child’s mind and reviews the typical phases of learning through which the child constructs his linguistic intelligence. The significance of this study is to make evident the child’s natural, albeit unconscious, will to learn and to show that the child engages in an unconscious analysis of language, learning first the simplest parts and then passing by definite stages to an understanding of syntax. The guides given in language methodology are keys which must be used creatively by the student himself. The actual language course given deals with the structure of the English language.

The Montessori approach to mathematics is based on the needs of the child. Montessori‘s psycho-mathematics is a plan or method for comprehensive mathematical education by means of psychological keys, and, to take a specific area, includes the relationship between the understanding of the structure of arithmetic and the psychology of the child. During the course we will examine several of the main elements of “new math”, such as the structure of the different number systems and the consideration of numeration in terms of powers. This comprehensive programme, in which the subjects of arithmetic, algebra and geometry are integrated so as to be mutually illuminating, Dr. Montessori called “psycho-mathematics”.

As new psychological characteristics appear in the child and enlarge the scope of his interests, he passes from the methodology which illustrates the origin and formation of the Earth (laboratory experiments in chemistry and physics) to the study of geology and physical geography. Geological evolution provides the basis for the exploration of physical, biological and political geography, which are then followed by the investigation of the related economic facts.

The subject matter of physics is presented to the child so that he may extend his understanding beyond the world of his senses and form an estimate of the vast phenomena of the universe by means of his imagination.

The biological sciences are not taught simply for their own sake but with the intention of giving the child a sense of respect for the life around him, so that he may be capable of assuming a collaborative rather than a destructive ecological role.

Just as mankind has aspired spiritually to discover a supreme being, the child who conceives of the idea of a divine order will be attracted towards God. Spiritual education can also help to form the child’s conscience.

Musical education extends from the study of the diatonic and chromatic scales to interpretive marching, the analysis of melody and musical notation. From the knowledge of the various tonalities and their progression the child learns transposition and modulation. The course in “psycho-music” concludes with the analytic study of rhythm.

The exercises in practical life continue from the pre-school and are now extended in accordance with the broadening experience and new interests of the child.  In his work with science experiments, art, scouting, crafts, etc., he is growing nearer to adult work.

To discuss culture in terms of a cosmic vision means to illustrate the intimate relationship between things, living nature and Man with all of his exploration of the environment, as well as to understand the cosmic task of each of the forces at work in this world, including human society. Therefore, in order to achieve a cosmic education, it is important to understand that any distinction between subject matter must be brought back to a vision of unity, in the same way that all the different forces acting in the world in which we live, constitute a unity.

Bergamo Skyline

 

"Cosmic Education, or the Montessori approach to the education of the child from 7 to 12, came about in the same way as the approach for the child of 3-6 by following the psychic needs of the child. He is insatiable for knowledge, he has a hungry mind. This child does not use his senses, but his imagination. Let us give aids to the imagination." Mario Montessori