La compétition dans la pédagogie Montessori ?

Competition in Montessori pedagogy?

Competition is not a fundamental principle of Montessori pedagogy.

On the contrary, various practices bear witness to a desire to reduce competition. For example, the absence of traditional grading limits comparisons between students.

Indeed, they cannot compare their results and establish rankings.

However, it is important to specify that the pedagogy recognizes the benefits of “controlled and healthy” competition. First of all, because it is necessary to prepare the children for the “real world” but especially because the healthy competition can help the child to develop positively.

In reality, competition exists, but in a specific form: the child is in competition with himself, not with his classmates.

What does Maria Montessori think?

Maria Montessori was not radically opposed to the competition that can naturally emerge between 2 children, in class or at recess. On the other hand, it was strictly opposed to competition as an engine of learning and development.

Indeed, one of the principles of Montessori pedagogy is the certainty that intrinsic motivation is more effective than rewards from outside (good grades, prizes, good points, etc.). It is on this basis that Maria Montessori developed her pedagogy.

The child who learns independently (supervised by adults who prepare a suitable environment for him) is simply proud of his personal accomplishments. He develops his self-confidence by successfully completing activities after self-correcting. Moreover, the virtues of failure are a key element of pedagogy. It is part of the learning process.

Thus, the child learns that he can make mistakes in front of other students without fear of being humiliated or made fun of.

Moreover, permanent and unlimited competition imposes a race for results.

However, Maria Montessori recommended respecting the child's pace of learning, without rushing him. During the 3-hour work cycles, the child works independently. However, during certain specifically defined times, children can present their work and/or presentation.

The Montessori pedagogy values ​​more cooperation between children. Indeed, from an early age, they are taught the notion of community, in which everyone has their place. Everyone contributes in their own way.

And at home ?

What practices can we put in place to foster cooperation between brothers and sisters ? When a child is proud of having finished getting dressed first, for example, encourage him to take advantage of this time to help his brother or sister.

When one compares to the other, try talking to him about himself individually so that he no longer focuses his attention on his brother or sister. Make him the center of the subject” I understand how you feel, your frustration, how could we do next time to make you feel better? »

When children find it difficult to share, it is important to establish precise rules for sharing in order to avoid any comparisons and jealousies that could have been avoided. Finally, you can practice collective activities in order to promote cooperation between your children: sports activities and cooperative games.

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