Montessori vs. Traditional

Montessori Method

Traditional Method

Sensory rich environment (as children learn through their senses) Sensory-deprived environment
Curriculum is individually based (different for each child depending on their own strengths and weaknesses) Curriculum is group based ( each child will have to do what the whole group is doing regardless of individual strengths and weaknesses)
Child chooses what they will work with Teacher chooses child’s work based on where group is on a whole
Classroom and teacher encourage self discipline to happen Teacher disciplines each child and group
Child understands mistakes made on their own through socialization and work with the materials Teacher points out mistakes made to child
Different ages grouped together Same ages grouped together
Socialization encouraged (child feels a part of a community) Socialization discouraged during class work (unless instructed otherwise by teacher)
Child teaches himself and solidifies his findings through working with others and the materials Teacher leads the group and tries to teach them concepts
How long the child works with a material is respected so that concentration may happen and the concept understood The time limit for learning a concept or working with a material usually has a time limit scheduled
Child is free to move around the classroom and find work that interests him, sit where they would like and work on their own or with others Child is assigned a seat and generally asked to stay there for the day
Children are the centre of the classroom ( the teacher fades into the background) Teacher is the centre of the classroom
Learning is reinforced through child’s repetition of work and positive self esteem Learning is reinforced through teacher repetition and rewards