This week we introduced the children to our Continent Globe. They had already learned the Earth is made of land and water and have now been introduced to the idea that the Earth is divided into seven continents. This materials is specific to Montessori schools and the continents are all assigned a color which helps make identification easier. We also use a song to help teach the names of the continents and several students sang this song merrily for a long while today. Don't be surprised if you hear this song:
What about Antarctica
Don't forget Australia..
Africa and Asia!
The study of the continents begins our cultural curriculum. This combines many subjects which connect the child to their place in the universe. Dr. Montessori believed that children become interested in concepts when they see the relationship between things. "...the mind of the child is capable of acquiring culture at a period of life when nobody would have thought it possible, but can only take it by his own activity. Culture cannot be received from another, but only through the work and increased realization of oneself. Nowadays, when we are aware of the powers of the absorbent mind during the period from three to six years, we know this possibility to take in culture at a very early age." (The Absorbent Mind, 2007, pg. 151)