The Maria Montessori House of Children
Up to 130 children aged 8 weeks to 6 years are taken care of in the Maria Montessori House for Children (Kinderhaus) in four groups of mixed ages. The 15 carers and the head all have the Montessori diploma, qualifying them to care for children according to the specifications of Montessori paedagogy. Two technical staff members assist them. An association of friends supports the work of the Kinderhaus, for instance through the purchase of training materials for the carers.
The Italian doctor and paedagogue Maria Montessori (1870-1952) considered child development as the unfolding of powers following a hidden but reliable inner “blueprint.” Not to impede but to encourage this self-development is the principle behind the educational model named after her. If this is followed, then the child’s inner drive to learn will itself provide for the learning of new skills. Accordingly, the day is centred around independent individual learning. Here the child itself can choose with what, with whom and for how long it wishes to work. The special Montessori materials give suggestions as to self-learning with which movements, techniques and behaviour can be learned.