A lot of thought and effort goes into the aesthetics of the Montessori classroom. Dr. Montessori’s belief was that the classroom shouldn’t look like a classroom at all. It should resemble the drawing room of a great house, a warm, inviting, comfortable and beautiful place to work and learn.
An understanding of beautification is also integrated into the Montessori curriculum. The classroom isn’t just a room with materials where lessons can take place. It is a carefully laid out place that calls to children, motivating them to explore, which is why instead of calling it a schoolroom, it’s called The Children’s House or Casa dei Bambini in Italian. Montessori believed the children should feel at home at school and that through creating an attractive place, they would also feel called upon to care for it. Isn’t that wonderful?
Flower arranging is one way the children contribute to the culture of the class. Fresh flowers are always on hand for them to cut, arrange in a vase and set out in the class. One post on the blog called Practical Life is about this work.
Flowers are just one way that Montessori classrooms are made beautiful. Fine art, lamps and rugs help make the classroom cozy. Shelves and bookcases are arranged so that small workspaces are delineated. Everything is child-sized. They are as able to function in that space as we adults can in our homes and offices, which goes a long way in making the classroom feel like it’s their space, made specifically for them to grow and learn.
A recent study has found that decluttering the classroom can be good for learning. The research was originally published in Psychological Science. An article about the findings was written on a New York Times blog. Here’s the link: