My grandmother helped me learn to read before I was four years old. I remember her providing my cousins and me with multiple ways of learning to read and write, but not always teaching us those skills herself. A lot of times, my cousins and I would play school and do our “lessons” together. I’m not sure I ever realized we were learning anything at the time; it always felt like we were playing.
Before I started teaching, I never realized how hard it was trying to help people learn something new. Some people just have a really hard time learning things from a teacher, and there’s nothing wrong with that. People don’t learn that way naturally. A lot of students have to take the time to figure things out for themselves to really comprehend it. Personally, I understand something better when I seek out the information on my own.
Fortunately there’s the Montessori method, an educational practice that focuses on how children learn naturally, helping them to “develop creativity, problem solving, social and time-management skills.” Although this approach to learning might be different than traditional schooling, the Montessori method has been used all over the world to help children learn for more than 100 years.23k