Sensorial Montessori

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Two sensations, tactile and muscular are mixed together and give rise to that sense which psychologist call the stereognostic sense. Explain what stereognostic education is? And how sensorial materials in the classroom develop the stereognostic perception of young children

SENSORIAL ESSAY

The child is introduced to the Sensorial area of the Montessori classroom after he has worked in practical life, become familiar with classroom rules and correct handling of materials, and is used to the idea of a full cycle of activity. While the sensorial exercises no longer involve familiar objects, they are working with skills the child uses every day- his senses. The child’s senses are his link with the world around him and his only means of exploring his environment. The formative years, from birth to six, are a time of great sensory exploration for the child. Since birth, the child has been absorbing impressions from his senses. Now, through the Sensorial materials, the child is given the tools needed to sharpen and refine his senses, as well as to understand, order, name and classify the various sensations he receives. The child passes through a sensitive period for the refinement of the senses between the ages of 2 ½ and 6 years old. The Sensorial area assists the child to educate his senses. While much of this type of education occurs naturally in the child’s life, the didactic materials in the Sensorial area help to isolate and further refine specific sensory impressions in an ordered and methodical way

‘No one can be free unless he is independent.  Therefore, the first active manifestations of the child’s individual liberty must be so guided that through this activity he may arrive at independence.’ Dr Maria Montessori

Once the child is introduced to the sensorial activities in the classroom, he starts working with the material, which grabs his attention and develops a sense of judgment and comparison, as to how to use the material. When he further repeats the activities on daily basis, he goes into the depth and starts understanding the activity much better, for example if he has worked with all the stereognostic material in the Montessori environment, like touch tablets, touch fabrics, stereognostic bag, feeling geometrical solids, he can then go back to the previous activities (knobbed cylinders, pink tower, broad stairs and knobless cylinders, etc) and use the stereognostic sense to perform them. Once he has worked with the material several times, the power of concentration develops in the child, so now he is able to do the activity better and understand the details, which will further help him in concentrating in other aspects of life. The concentration further develops a power of observation in the child, which also means that when the child is using his full concentration in performing an activity, he acutely observes the material and this is when he starts thinking of using the given material in different ways, he will think of different variations in the activity itself, thus making him understand the concept of the activity in a better way. The exercises carried out in order to make the senses more refined in their perception, also do something for the education of character. It forms the basic discipline in the child which will make him more orderly in his life in future. If a person is disorderly in his life, never puts back things in their places and does not finish what he has started. This further builds the concept of the child thoroughly and now he starts giving words to the concept which is formed in his mind, for example heavy, light, thin, thick, etc. The language building, majorly starts developing when the child is been given the three period name lesson, beginning with the color tablets, where the child is being introduced to the 3 primary colors (red, blue, yellow), then presentation tray, geometrical solids, etc. He can also go back to the previous activities and learn the language for...
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