If education is always to be conceived along the same antiquated lines of a mere transmission of knowledge, there is little to be hoped from it. For what is the use of transmitting knowledge if the individual’s total development lags behind? And so we discovered that education is not something which the teacher does, but that it is a natural process which develops spontaneously in the human being. ~MARIA MONTESSORI
As you search for a pre-school for your child, you may come across schools with differing philosophies and approaches – Montessori, Reggio Emilia, Play-Based, High Scope are just some of the types you may see.
With so many different pre-school philosophies and curriculums, how do you know which one is right for your child?
As you review the different types, think about your child’s personality and learning style, and try to imagine how your child will fit in each environment. Keep in mind that more than one type may fit well with your child’s learning style. Here is a quick look at some of the more common types of pre-school philosophies.
The Montessori Approach
The Montessori pre-school philosophy is based on the work of Maria Montessori, an Italian educator, who founded the movement in 1907.
The Reggio Emilia Approach
Reggio Emilia schools are based on the highly successful preschools developed by the townspeople of Reggio Emilia, Italy during the 1940s.
The Play-Based Approach
In a play-based program, children choose activities based on their current interests. The term “play-based” is often interchanged with “child-centered” which could be used to describe the majority of available preschool programs.
The Multiple Intelligence Approach
The Theory of Multiple Intelligence was first proposed by Dr. Howard Gardner in 1983 in his book “Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligence”, who received a Nobel Prize in 1986 for developing the theory and currently serves as a professor in Harvard University.
The Waldorf Steiner Approach
The Waldorf philosophy, which began with the founding of the first Waldorf school in 1919, is based on the ideas of Austrian educator Rudolf Steiner.
The Whole Brain Learning Approach
The approach came into being due to research by Dr. Roger W. Sperry in the 1960s on the left-brain right-brain divide, where it was discovered that left brain thinking is verbal and analytical, while right brain is non-verbal and intuitive.