The first blog post I ever wrote was about a book called How to Raise an Amazing Child: The Montessori Way. It's a fantastic entry-level Montessori book. The author Tim Seldin recently released another book with Lorna McGrath Montessori for Every Family: A Practical Parenting Guide to Living, Loving and Learning. As the title suggests, it's all about the Montessori Family ❤️!!
"The Montessori way of thinking encompasses many things, but fundamentally it is a way of creating a culture that helps people of all ages to work together in peaceful, mutually supportive ways. Its approach is counter-intuitive to the more familiar one of top-down authority and control, with rewards and punishments and external judgements about whether work is up to scratch." - Montessori for Every Family.
Let's take a look inside.
This is the first Montessori book that has tackled topics like managing screen time (for younger and older children) in detail, disarming squabbles, creating an emotionally safe environment, family meetings, action games and activities, sharing family stories, making agreements, family projects, quiet spaces, and celebrating family gatherings.
We know there is more to Montessori than giving our children a Montessori education or attending a Montessori school. If you are interested in creating a Montessori home, in being a Montessori family, this is the book for you.
It's also a good resource for those who aren't sure about Montessori parenting but are looking for alternatives, for those who are looking for other ways of supporting and connecting with their children. And this book is thorough, there are so many topics covered.
What grabs me right away is that so much of this book is applicable to teens, unlike many of the other Montessori books available. So while there is tons of information about younger children, it's just as useful for parents of elementary-age and teens.
This is for parents new to Montessori and for parents and teachers who already know a lot about Montessori or who have been parenting for many years. Montessori For Every Family should be in Montessori School parent libraries and on resource/recommended reading lists!!
It has lots of good tips and it's easy to read.
I know a lot of parents struggle with this - encouragement versus praise!
Above you can see the book has an 'Ages and stages' section throughout, indicating how that area can be applied to children of different ages. Above to the right, you can see an 'Our story' section which also features throughout, sharing personal stories of parents to children of various ages.
My advice while reading this book is don't feel like you have to take it all on. It paints a picture of a peaceful, calm, perfect home. But we know homes, and Montessori homes can at times be fast-paced and busy, there are times it isn't possible to do art with our children, spend time with our children at bedtime or manage family projects. There is some assumption that families have time, space and financial resources to manage it all and there is little mention of the stressors of everyday family life. However, the ideas and strategies presented can help us parent our own way.
If you are new to Montessori and are looking for activity ideas and how to set up your home, How to Raise an Amazing Child is a good place to start!
Check your local library, our local library (Randwick) doesn't have Montessori For Every Family but it does have How to Raise an Amazing Child. In Australia, I preordered Montessori For Every Family from Amazon AU. It is now available at Booktopia and other book stores may be able to order it in.
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