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‘Montessori method of learning imperative in early childhood’

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Director General, Office of Education Quality Assurance, Lagos State Ministry of Education, Mrs. Ronke Soyombo, has stressed the need for schools to adopt the Montessori method of learning in early childhood education curriculum, saying it offers learners unlimited access to learning.

Speaking during the launch and inaugural Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Foundation for Montessori Education in Nigeria (FMEN), Soyombo who was unveiled as the honourary president of the group, said the Montessori method supports children’s freedom to learning and provides them guide to achieve their full potentials.

She maintained that schools must endeavour to understand the basic principles of early childhood education as checks conducted so far reveal that in most schools pupils are decoding and not comprehending.

Stating that when the foundation is well built, every other thing rightly falls into place, she said, “Every child from zero to six years, deserved a good foundation in Montessori.

The reason for the challenges confronting students in secondary and tertiary levels, is because we didn’t get the first six years right.

“If you miss the first six years, you are joking. In the United Kingdom, most parents don’t mind spending their last penny in the foundation class, because they have realised that once they get it right at that level, their children will seamlessly progress to higher academic level.

And so Montessori is the best method at that stage.”

Noting that parents’ support and good understanding of the method is also imperative, Soyombo urged them to complement teachers’ effort and embrace 21st century learning approaches in the interest of their wards.

Chairperson of the foundation, Bimpe Pogoson, said FMEN is aimed at supporting the development of the child for the benefit of the society.

She said through its adopted aid to life programme, members of the group will also support early years education in the country by empowering parents and caregivers in underserved communities.

She noted that the members of the foundation, registered in Nigeria as a non-governmental organisation, are like-minded individuals who had experience of Montessori education and will like to make an impact in the lives of children using Dr. Montessori philosophy.

The coordinator of Aid to Life Programme, Mrs. Yinka Awobo-Pearse, explained, “we plan to use our collective knowledge of the Montessori principles and practices to support parents from pregnancy until the child is three years old.


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