If you’ve looked into Montessori schools, you may have heard the term “normalization.” Especially if you’ve heard that term used in relation to standardizing numbers in statistics or offering special education students a more mainstreamed experience, you may be confused. When speaking of the Montessori Method, what is normalization?
First, it doesn’t mean making a child fit in. The Montessori Method focuses on guiding children into becoming independent, self-inspired learners and nourishing their intellectual and creative curiosity. To try and squeeze children into a standard mold, then, would be counterintuitive. Rather, normalization is an anthropological term that refers to someone becoming a productive member of society in his or her own unique way.
What does this mean for the children? Normalization is a process that occurs in the normal development of children when they’re engaged in meaningful work. Dr. Montessori noted that when children have freedom and an environment designed to meet their needs, they blossom. They are able to concentrate intently, become engaged in their work and emerge from it refreshed, continually growing in inner discipline and peace. She called it normalization because she believed it is a state that any child can achieve. Wouldn’t it be nice if children who were “continually growing in inner discipline and peace” became the new “normal?”
At MSOD, we work toward that goal. Utilizing the theories of Dr. Montessori along with other strategies, we strive to prepare our students academically, socially, emotionally and physically to conquer every challenge they’ll face. We are committed to creating an environment in which children learn for the love of learning because their natural curiosity is encouraged.
Our teachers guide and encourage our students, offering them nearly endless opportunities to develop their senses and motor skills, learning to self-correct along the way. Each accomplishment builds the child’s self-esteem, and the atmosphere is one of excitement, support, and “freedom within limits,” where children learn to respect each other and their environment.
The goal of our program is to help children reach their full potential in all areas of life so that they leave our school as independent problem solvers who manage time well and make good choices. Our students have confidence and a good self-image, and this allows them to face challenges that come their way with optimism and assurance. To learn more about the philosophy and curriculum at MSOD Shipra, call to schedule a tour.