My daughter was born into a tumultuous year in our lives. When she was three months old, we moved cross-country. When she was six months old, we moved again. She’ll be ten months in a month; we’ll be moving then, too. Needless to say, it’s been a challenge for her to have the perfect Montessori environment in which to grow in. In fact, she was almost seven months old before we were able to transition her to her floor bed (due to safety issues). This is not the ideal, and I realize that; however, life just got in the way (as it has a habit of doing).
But what is the difference between the kind of work which is an obligation and a chore, and the work that fulfills the spirit and the mind? First, it is important to realize that work in a Montessori environment is not forced on a child, but is instead freely chosen. A Montessori environment offers the child the liberty of choosing their own activities, and they have consistently, and independently, chosen work that serves a developmental purpose. Through this work, children show an ability to concentrate for long periods of time, a propensity for repeating an activity until a certain skill is mastered, and the urge to make the maximum effort on any task.