Po Box 967
Kamuela, HI 96743-0967
"Our goal is, in the words of Dr. Montessori herself, “To educate the human potential…” by means of a scientifically prepared environment which provides a wide variety of equipment, employs a multi-sensory approach to learning, and frees the child to choose his own activities, according to his interests and abilities.
As a result of the prepared environment, the child becomes a confident competent person, with independence, concentration, and inner discipline, able to trust his own inner guide. He will learn to exhibit care and respect for himself and others and for the world around him. The child will be able to exercise initiative and persistence in completing tasks and be one who exhibits sensitivity, curiosity, creativity, and a spirit of discovery in their approach to life and learning.
MECH uses the philosophy and methods developed by Dr. Maria Montessori. This system of education is used with normal, gifted, and disabled children and is used successfully in countries around the world. The Montessori method is a comprehensive developmental system based on the premise that children develop on an individual timetable. Specially designed materials are provided to meet the needs of the developing child. "Learning how to learn” is a key concept, and is accomplished by allowing the child opportunities to explore and discover according to their own individual needs. The children are guided by teachers trained in the various uses and objectives of the Montessori materials and who have a reverence for the special qualities and potentials of each child. The classroom is carefully organized in an orderly manner to be what we call the “prepared environment” in which a child can learn effortlessly. Each child is free to choose materials that naturally encourage and develop concentration and a sense of responsibility, including respect for the rights of others.
The “jobs” within the Montessori classroom are ordered and sequenced by difficulty, teach only one concept at a time, and are to a large extent, self-correcting. Each child’s space is defined by a work rug or a tablemat, allowing the child the freedom to invite others to join in, or the option to work alone. Because many children of different ages are working individually with the materials, there is no need for competition. It is common for older children to offer assistance to younger children, reinforcing their own feelings of self-esteem and self-confidence, as well as their understanding of the concept or skill involved. Younger children look up to their senior classmates and learn much from them indirectly through observation. Each child relates primarily to his or her own work and his/her individual progress is not compared to the achievement of others.
Excerpted from the preschool's website