What is a high-quality preschool education?
According to OVIS Montessori Kindergarten, a high quality preschool education is not just about a grand building complex, and certainly not about selling its sites, facilities or foreign teachers for a price.
There’s something invisible about a fine preschool education, such as the trust between the school and the family, the understanding and recognition of the education concept, a child's sense of joy and surprise, and a harmonious and secure relationship between a caregiver and a child.
In Wuhan, such a kindergarten filled with love and trust will open in February next year.
OVIS Montessori Kindergarten is part of the Optics Valley International School. It is a strategic supporting project of the Management Committee of Wuhan East Lake High-tech Zone, aiming to create a suitable environment for talents and professionals and serve as an escalation upgrading of Optics Valley.
Adhering to the "child-centered" philosophy, the kindergarten adopts the international approach of kindergarten management, which respects the natural growth of a child's life, and dedicates itself to create an ecological garden for 2 to 6 year-old children.
"We want to employ love as a starting point for education and teach in a way that we can use one life to impact on another life. said Sophy, who is the head of OVIS Montessori Kindergarten and has immersed herself in the early childhood education industry for more than 20 years. She reckoned that the purpose of early childhood education is not to prepare students for primary school, but to lay the foundation of wisdom and morality for children’s whole life, so that the education they received in early childhood can become a treasure for their entire life.
Before the age of 6, children are in highly sensitive periods for development in language, space, order, independence, painting, music, aesthetics, interpersonal relationship and self-cognition. In these critical periods, what will OVIS do?
Equality and Respect from within
Building a child-centeredcommunity culture
"The efforts made by children in their growth are for the purpose of achieving their independence, but this independence is often denied by adults.”
The teaching approach at OVIS Montessori Kindergarten is child-centered as opposed to teacher-centered stuffing teaching. We advocate training that originates from daily life, coupled with good learning environment and rich teaching aids. All of these allow children to take learning into their own hands, respect their inner needs, and build a strong personality.
Equality and respect are not easy things in the practice of education.
Why do you say that?
"For example, in children's games and conversations, teachers and parents expect every child to engage fully and actively.
However, there are always some children who just sit there quietly, seem to be listening and thinking, rarely express their opinions, and are not willing to actively participate in the game.
At this time, many teachers and parents will be very anxious, and will put more energy on the child, and expect to use a variety of ways to promote the child to join the activity.
It's a well-intentioned idea, but the result can be just the opposite.
American psychologist Alison Gopnik has found through years of empirical research that "even very young children are able to think about possibilities, distinguishing between what is possible and what is real, and even change the world. They can plan by imagining what the world might be like differently. They are also able to imagine how the world might have looked differently in the past and respond to past possibilities.
Therefore, when a child is not actively engaged in activities, it does not mean that there is nothing going on inside her.
It could be that the previous conversation has touched her and made her think. It could be that she is recalling a similar experience. It could be that she is listening to her partner's side of the story.
In either case, if our teachers urge children to speak and participate when they are not ready, it will add extra psychological pressure to children and make them feel insecure.
Being child-centered requires seeing the child's needs, reading the child's emotions, and giving the child a high level of satisfaction and responsiveness, all based on careful observation, careful listening, and a supportive environment for children’s exploration provided by teachers.
Therefore, in OVIS Montessori Kindergarten, teachers play the role of observers and helpers. They will truly respect children's wishes, observe their inner needs, design the environment for them, and demonstrate the operation of teaching aids, and then teach children according to their individual differences.
OVIS Montessori Kindergarten will respect the pace of children's growth. There is no class schedule in Montessori teaching and no division of time between classes, so that children can follow their internal needs and concentrate on work and study freely. At the same time, we will abandon the traditional reward and punishment system and adopt a respectful education method to cultivate and protect the embryonic stage of children's sense of self-esteem.
If we want our children to have the capacity to create happiness in an uncertain future, we need to cultivate their concentration and emotional stability from early childhood, leaving children free to develop and explore.
"We can't rush with our children, but to see the world through their eyes."
Living next door to all living beings on earth and experience four seasons’ change
Applying senses to absorb knowledge of your surroundings
Montessori education is an educational system that centers around work and allows children to do things by hand. Children can construct wisdom by absorbing the extensive knowledge provided by the surroundings through sensory experiences.
There are classrooms without boundaries, and learning without limits.
OVIS provides a "classroom" outside the classroom.
Some people say that for children, nature is the best place for study.
In Spring, children can smell the fragrance of the soil to feel the power of growth;
In autumn, they can look at the changes in the leaves to feel the loss of life.
In the mornings, they can bury a seed to cultivate hope.
At night, they can pick a few flower to discover the color of life.
"Nature-based education plays an important role in education, as children are part of the nature, so it is necessary to include nature-based education as part of their curriculum.”
By living next door to all living beings on earth and experience four seasons’ change, children will understand the cycle of life and learn to appreciate nature and respect life.
From garden cultivation and to animal rearing, from observing the changes of the sun, the moon and the stars, to capturing the sound of birds and insects, children can understand the relationship between nature and natural phenomena through their own hands and senses and form an original understanding of everything in nature.
Ji Xianlin, dubbed by many as the "master of Chinese culture", said in his autobiography that the happiest day of his life was when he was in primary school and his teacher took them to dig and plant vegetables. It was as if the universe was filled with green and you could touch it.
OVIS always believes that education should not be separated from manual labor, through which children are taught to be independent, to enjoy life, and to cherish the beauty of it. In the process of planting and harvesting, children learn to observe and wait. The physical work they do not only gives them a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, but can also cultivates their sense of responsibility.
In this process, the professional AMI Montessori teachers record and guide each child to follow the characteristics of learning in his or her sensitive periods and help children maximum their learning.
At OVIS, knowledge is not limited to the classroom.
They have to experience and feel. When they touch the earth, when they see a sprout, when they catch an insect, when they gather a bumper harvest or even no harvest, every moment is a gift of nature.
Awakening the yearning for wonder
Becoming your independent, focused self
Some people ask, what is the difference between a normal kindergarten child and a child from the OVIS Motessori kindergarten?
The "difference" is not how many poems they can recite, how many English words they speak, nor how many special skills they have gained at the age of three.
Their most distinctive characteristics are: OVIS kids will be very focused, have a yearning for knowledge and the mind of their own.
This trait is the "chemical reaction" generated by Montessori education: What Montessori advocates is to allow children to develop freely in a prepared environment, to improve their self-control, to establish a sense of order, focus, and form a sound personality.
According to OVIS Montessori , the meaning of education is to enable children to truly live their own lives, to make choices for themselves, to follow their hearts, and to seek their own happiness.
The future is always changing. We want to create independent thinkers who, no matter what they do in the future, do it out of love, not that they need to follow others’steps. And that’s how they find happiness.
And the best part is when they look back and realize that it was the focus and curiosity they developed in their early childhood that became the beacon of their lives to happiness.
This is also the greatest wish of OVIS Montessori Kindergarten.