A controversial schooling method that focuses on personal development rather than exams produces more mature, creative and socially adept children, scientists have revealed. Psychologists in the US found that across a range of abilities, children at Montessori schools out-performed those given a traditional education. Five-year-old Montessori pupils were better prepared for reading and maths, and 12-year-olds wrote ‘significantly more creative’ essays using more sophisticated sentence structures. Some of the why do kids classes in the Montessori method video differences were seen in social skills and behaviour.
Montessori children displayed a greater sense of ‘justice and fairness’, interacted in an ’emotionally positive’ way, and were less likely to engage in ‘rough play’ during break times. The schooling system was invented in the early 1900s by Dr Maria Montessori to educate poor children in her native Italy. Today, there are more than 5,000 Montessori schools in the US, and around 600 in the UK, where they are privately funded. The method discourages traditional competitive measurements of achievement, such as grades and tests, and instead focuses on the individual progress and development of each child.
Children of different ages share the same classes, and are encouraged to collaborate and help each other. Special educational materials are used to keep children interested, and there is an emphasis on “practical life skills”. The researchers, who reported their findings in the journal Science, compared children aged three to 12 at a Montessori school in Milwaukee with those at other schools in the same area. Parents won places for their children at the unnamed Montessori school by entering a ‘lottery’ run by the local education department.