This is a rather lengthy video on how I see the marked differences of the Waldorf and Montessori methods. Each method has similar styles but the approach to a young child is very different in terms of when the child starts formal learning, how the classroom is set up, materials, and also the style of learning (In Waldorf, teacher is the instructor) and then ( Montessori is more child-led, where the kids are in groups and go to stations and teacher is more of a facilitator). This video particularly pertains to the early childhood years. In Waldorf, the child has his days filled with a "rhythm" and that may include: singing, storytelling, sewing, baking bread, dancing, free play, and nature walks. The idea is to be an example to the child by "doing" with him on certain daily tasks. Children should be left alone during their free time while using their imaginations. The academics in a Waldorf school are started at seven years of age. The thinking behind this is that the child's body is forming and growing and all the energy should be focused on this and not divided with the cognitive side of the child. In Montessori, you find more "practical" thinking and activities. Each child is able to explore his or her own interest but is carefully monitored to help "direct" him in properly using what he is interested. This can limit the imagination, but does not exclude it altogether. Children in a Montessori school start around the age of three (much earlier than Waldorf).
Keep in mind, there is a lot more to the methods. In fact, this could be a short class in it of itself. These are just some highlights on what I recently discovered and based on my own experience. Please feel free to share or offer insight!
My other videos with demonstrations:
My Waldorf (fall season) Activity *NEW*:
Modern Waldorf People Play :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ktpvl2XfJyM
Child Labor In America ( Picture Documentary): https://blog.flickr.net/en/2014/06/11/world-day-against-child-labour-a-tribute-to-lewis-hine-3/
Waldorf & Rudolf Steiner:
Contrast of Waldorf and Montessori methods:
Montessori & Dr. Maria Montessori
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