Friday, March 13, 2015

Montessori from the Start: The Child at Home from Birth to Age Three - Paula Polk Lillard & Lynn Lillard Jessen

Montessori from the Start: The Child at Home, from Birth to Age ThreePublisher:
Release Date:
  July 22, 2003
Non-Fiction, Parenting, Education
304 pages
My Rating:


 About This Book (from Goodreads)
What can parents do to help their youngest children in their task of self-formation? How does the Montessori method of hands-on learning and self-discovery relate to the youngest infants? This authoritative and accessible book answers these and many other questions. Based on Dr. Maria Montessori's instructions for raising infants, its comprehensive exploration of the first three years incorporates the furnishings and tools she created for the care and comfort of babies. From the design of the baby's bedroom to the child-sized kitchen table, from diet and food preparation to clothing and movement, the authors provide guidance for the establishment of a beautiful and serviceable environment for babies and very young children. They introduce concepts and tasks, taking into account childrens' ''sensitive periods'' for learning such skills as dressing themselves, food preparation, and toilet training. Brimming with anecdote and encouragement, and written in a clear, engaging style, Montessori from the Start is a practical and useful guide to raising calm, competent, and confident children.

How and Why I Acquired This Book
After seeing this marked as “To Read” by one of my friends on Goodreads, I requested it from my library.  The Montessori method (what little I know about it) is fascinating to me.  Add to that the fact I have an 18-month old at home and another little one on the way, and it just seemed like a good time to read and learn more about Montessori.

This book was good if a bit overwhelming in all of its ideas and skills that apparently my toddler is already behind on.  So it was nice to get to the end and have a disclaimer from the authors that it’s okay to pick and choose what to implement.  That, ultimately, every family is different and has different needs and abilities.  It would have been nice to have that up front.  It would have relieved some of my guilt.

This book really does cover pretty much every aspect of growth and development from birth to three.  It starts out with how the nursery should be arranged and why.  There are big concepts and ideas that are then broken out into the practical.

The authors discuss brain growth, the brain to hand connection, movement, life skills like dressing and feeding oneself, language and the arts, and how to help your child to develop best in all these areas.

Really, it’s probably more a 3.5 or 4 book for rating as far as the presentation of the ideas.  My lower rating of 3 is probably due to my personal biases.  It’s one I’m considering purchasing and using for reference.

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