Teacher's Role

In the Montessori classroom there is no front of the room and no teacher’s desk as a focal point of attention because the stimulation for learning comes from the total environment. Dr. Montessori always referred to the teacher as the “Director” or “Directress”, and his or her role differs considerably from that of a traditional teacher. She is first of all a very keen observer of the individual interests and needs of the child, and her daily work proceeds from her observations rather than from a prepared curriculum. She demonstrates the correct use of materials as they are individually chosen by the children. She watches the progress of each child and keeps a record of his work with the materials. She is trained to recognize periods of readiness in a child. Sometimes she must divert a child who is hesitant. Whenever a child makes a mistake, she refrains, if possible, from intervening and allows him to discover his own error through further manipulation of the self- correcting materials. This procedure follows Dr. Montessori’s principle that a child learns through experience.