The montessori way…

One of the best decisions Abhi and I have made for Anji is to send her to the Montessori preschool. I feel so very grateful when I see the spark in Anjali – the curiosity, the questioning, the kindness and the confidence. Anjali was a shy kid and until she started going to Montessori, dropping her off at a preschool meant tears and hard goodbyes. But with Montessori, from day one, when she walked in, it was like she understood at some deep level that she belonged. This was her kind of place. The atmosphere that the teachers create here of trust is something the children seem to understand immediately. They are at ease, and when they are at ease, they create. They are fully themselves. and this is a gift like no other!

Seeing Anjali’s confidence in doing things for herself, and being a valued member of the society with something to contribute makes my heart full. Last night, she dressed herself fully after her bath, including choosing her clothes before I got out of the shower. I did not expect it! She also cleaned the chairs, of her own volition, by finding a towel and making it damp. and she was so proud! A joy to witness is her increasing confidence in her motor skills – the ability to draw, to write her name. The amazing thing is we have not pushed her in any way – it is entirely of her own interest and her incredible teachers. We don’t ever have to say – do you want to practice writing? or drawing? She loves it and hence she does it.

Her teacher, amazing Ms. M expects her children to take responsibility for who they are and their choices. She expects perfection. and they give it. These young children from 3 – 6 years. Once last week, when Anji finished a half-hearted attempt at her job (in order to get on to eating and play), her teacher made her go back to her work and try again. Anji grumbled about it at home. We did not venture any comment. The next day, she was so proud when she finished her work ‘the right way’. She came home and said, ‘today my Ms and Os were beautiful!’. Ah! To take pride in one’s work! As a teacher myself teaching high school math, this is something I think of everyday. And of how to give my kids the tools to excel and develop confidence in their own problem solving. Seeing the Montessori teachers inspires me to be a better teacher myself. To remember always to be kind, non-judging and to expect more from my kids. And then they miraculously seem to deliver!

So it was my pleasure to spend the morning at Montessori along with a couple of other indian families to bring in the spirit of Deepavali, the festival of lights, into the classroom. Though the students had already done their bit – by painting diyas! what a beautiful sight walking into the school. Making the coconut ladoos was work – but seeing them devoured by little angels was awesome.


photo 4

Pictures courtesy: Montessori children’s school.

There is a feeling of ‘rightness’. I don’t know how else to explain this – this feeling that this is right. exactly right. The way things should be. Thats the feeling I get when I think of how fortunate we are to have this incredible community to support Anjali in her growing up.

May you appreciate the rightness, wherever it is, in your life.


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