Socialization (Montessori)

From Montepedia

In Montessori education, Socialization refers to the process by which the child acquires the knowledge and attitudes that allow them to become an effective member of a social group and a specific social order.[1]

This concept is integral to the Montessori method, which recognizes that optimal social learning occurs when children of different ages interact.[2] Mixed-age classrooms are therefore a key feature of Montessori schools, fostering socialization by allowing younger children to learn from older peers, and older children to reinforce their learning by teaching younger ones.

Montessori Quotes

  • "The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, 'The children are now working as if I did not exist.'"[3]
  • "Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment."[4]

Research and Critiques

  • Pros: Socialization in Montessori environments is seen as a strength of the method. The mixed-age classrooms promote peer learning, foster empathy, and encourage cooperative behavior.[5]
  • Cons: Critics argue that the Montessori model may not adequately prepare children for traditional educational environments where interaction with same-age peers is the norm. There are also concerns about potential gaps in social skills' development if children only interact within their school environment and lack exposure to wider social contexts.[6]

Comparisons to Other Methods

While socialization is a goal of all educational approaches, Montessori's emphasis on mixed-age classrooms and peer learning distinguishes its approach from more traditional, same-age groupings common in most other educational systems.[7]

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.[8] The glossary has since been expanded and updated with additional 'Montessori Terms'.

Please help to translate this page into your local language


  1. Osterkorn, J. (1980). The Montessori Approach. St. Nicholas Montessori Society.
  2. Hellbrügge, T. (1979). The Munich Longitudinal Study on the Genesis of Individual Competencies (LOGIC). Druckerei Hutzler.
  3. Montessori, M. (1912). The Montessori Method. Frederick A. Stokes Company.
  4. Montessori, M. (1949). The Absorbent Mind. Clio Press.
  5. Lillard, A. (2017). Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius. Oxford University Press.
  6. Mooney, C. (2000). Theories of Childhood: An Introduction to Dewey, Montessori, Erikson, Piaget, and Vygotsky. Redleaf Press.
  7. Thayer-Bacon, B. J. (2017). Maria Montessori, John Dewey, and William H. Kilpatrick. Education and Culture, 33(2), 31-57.
  8. Haines, A. (2001). Glossary of Montessori Terms. Montessori Training Centre of St. Louis.