Learning Connections Through Real Life Experiences
Learning is not something that can be confined to a schoolroom.
In fact, the best learning happens when children are able to relate what is done in the classroom to real life situations which they experience every day.
Real learning is evident when they are able to make connections between what they see and experience outside of school to what they do in school.
Dani, a two year old went to a coastal area for a family outing and saw a lighthouse. He is just beginning to talk. He comes back to school after the holiday and picks up one of the Montessori activities. He gets to work, and seems to have a very specific task in mind. He begins by piling the pieces one on top of another, and excitedly completes making a tower out of blocks and squeals in delight “Lighthouse! Lighthouse!!”
This is an excellent example of being able to make connections between seemingly unrelated ideas. What is important is that he was able to recreate what he saw, using objects that are freely available in his immediate environment.
We see this repeatedly in the classroom. Children take the Montessori material and create wonderful things with their imagination, or create something that they have seen recently.
This aspect of being given the freedom to create is such an essential requirement in the world today. Business school professors have done a lot of research which points to the fact that the most successful organizations are those where employees have the freedom to use their creativity and imagination to come up with solutions to problems.
However, creativity is not something that can be taught in a short span of time. Creativity is the potential that each individual is born with, and we need to allow it to blossom from an early age. This is one of our guiding philosophies at Jigyasa, and we see wonderful outcomes as a result.
— Anuradha Chadha
Anuradha is the Founder-Director at Jigyasa The School, an international preschool in Bangalore. She writes frequent posts on her experiences with children.