Adaptation (Montessori)

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Adaptation is a term used in Montessori education, closely related to the concept of the Absorbent Mind. Adaptation refers to the process through which a child integrates with their environment by absorbing cultural and social cues.[1] This process allows the child to become a functional part of their society.

Montessori Quotes

  • "The greatness of the human personality begins at the hour of birth...from this early age, the child reveals an alert mind...the child absorbs these impressions not with his mind but with his life itself."[2]
  • "By adapting to the world, they become a link in the connection of the generations, an instrument of society."[3]

Research and Critiques

  • Pros: Montessori's concept of adaptation underpins the importance of the child's interactions with their environment in shaping their learning and development. It underscores the role of culture and society in forming a child's character and worldview.[4]
  • Cons: Critics argue that the concept of adaptation may over-emphasize environmental factors and underestimate innate capabilities or genetic factors in a child's development.[5]

Comparisons to Other Methods

Unlike the behaviorist view of learning, which proposes that learning is a result of conditioning and reinforcement, Montessori's concept of adaptation emphasizes that children actively absorb and adapt to their environments.[6]

See Also

Glossary of Montessori Terms

The Glossary of Montessori Terms is a collection of specific terms and vocabulary that are related to the Montessori method of education, primarily focusing on the theory and practice for children aged 3 to 6. The jargon used by Montessori educators offers a unique insight into child development as discussed by Maria Montessori. The 'Montepedia Glossary of Montessori Terms' originated from a glossary that was compiled by the late Annette Haines from the Montessori Training Centre of St. Louis, at the request of Molly O'Shaughnessy from the Montessori Centre of Minnesota. The reason behind the creation of this glossary was to supplement O'Shaughnessy's lecture at the Joint Annual Refresher Course that took place in Tampa, Florida, in February 2001.[7] The glossary has since been expanded and updated with additional 'Montessori Terms'.

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  1. Haines, A. (1993). Absorbent Mind and the Sensitive Periods. The NAMTA Journal.
  2. Montessori, M. (1949). The Absorbent Mind. Clio Press.
  3. Montessori, M. (1949). The Absorbent Mind. Clio Press.
  4. Haines, A. (1993). Absorbent Mind and the Sensitive Periods. The NAMTA Journal.
  5. Egan, K. (2002). Getting it wrong from the beginning: Our progressivist inheritance from Herbert Spencer, John Dewey, and Jean Piaget. Yale University Press.
  6. Schunk, D. (2012). Learning Theories: An Educational Perspective. Pearson.
  7. Haines, A. (2001). Glossary of Montessori Terms. Montessori Training Centre of St. Louis.