The function of education according to Dr. Montessori is, to render assistance according to man in course of fundamental development in order to work at his self formation in obedience to the laws that govern development. For rendering this assistance effectively a special preparation is necessary. This preparation is not only physical but also spiritual. The adult world has to bring about both these preparations an then render the needed assistance. Dr. Montessori laid a greate emphasis on the spiritual preparation of the adult. This helps him to shed away the age old prejudices against the child and serve development.

After having trained and prepared oneself the 'adult' as he or she is called in a 'Montessori House of Children' should prepare the following:

  • Prepare the environment with proper conditions.
  • Prepare the means of development. These are the very tools with which the child work.
  • The adult should establish positive and constructive contacts between the child and the means of development.
  • Should ensure that the child enjoys freedom with regard to choosing an activity and repeating it as many times as he wants.

The adult in the House of Children is one of the agents in the process of education. The other two being the prepared environment along with the community of children, secondly the means of development. The adult herself is in the background as an assistant. She approaches the child either through the environment or throught the means of development. As far as possible the indirect approach is resorted to, because, it doesn't dampen the child's enthusiasm and spontaneous interest and also the thrill of doing and knowing things by himself

The Montessori Method is adapted to children's education at three levels.

  • General adaptation to the child in general satisfying his needs in order to follow the path of development.
  • Local adaptation satisfying the needs of local conditions like social, culture and climatic conditions.
  • Individual adaptation satisfying the needs of an individual child depending upon his specific needs and capacities.

The aim of the the Montessori Method of education is to help the child become a self sufficient and an independent master of himself. All activities in the House of children are directed towards this goal. In fact the very aim of life itself is this independence and education is a means towards this goal.

Alas! in traditional school this aim is lost sight of. Individuality is crushed under mass education system. The teacher dominates the show. No freedom of choice or freedom to repeat the activities. The child has no freedom of movement either, children are crammed in a small enclosure and are made to do what the teacher dictates. The Child has to do what the teacher tells him to do and this cannot but curb his development.

It is around the age of two-and-a-half years that the child starts needing the help that a Montessori House of Children has to offer to his development. Around that age, his development enters a new phase. He is now called upon by the natural laws that govern human development to undertake new tasks. During the first two-and-a-half years of his life, the child constructs the basis of his psychic personality with all the human psychic features and faculties. This phase of creative development is followed by a phase during which the child is called upon to further perfect, co-ordinate and consolidate the tremendous constructions he has made during the earlier phase and to become a conscious master of them and start utilising them for his further developmetn In order to be able to make all these achievements, he needs certain living conditions which a House of Children is specially prepared to provide, as it also aims at protecting and stimulating his developmental life.

Most educators and psychologists today agree that the most important period in the development of a person's intelligence occurs between birth and age five. A child's mind is extremely absorbent and his curiosity is at a peak during these early years. When properly nourished and stimulated, the child's mind forms patterns for learning that serve him well throughout his life. The Montessori system of preschool education has proven to be one of the most effective and fastest growing methods to guide a child through these critical years.

The Montessori method of education is basically a unique approach to learning. Rather than "teaching" the child concepts, an environment is designed to stimulate the child's interest and facilitate his understanding and learning capacities spontaneously with little or no adult intervention.

The child needs opportunities in his life not only as a member of a family but also as a member of a children's community composed of some 30 to 35 children all in one and the same phase of development and yet of various ages, i.e. from two-and-a-half years to six years. He needs to live in an environment which makes full freedom of movement possible. He needs certain forms of developmental activities with material specially and scientifically prepared to serve as the means of development. He also needs expert help of an adult specially trained for the purpose, in order to be able to conquer and enjoy freedom of choice with regard to those developmental activities.

Daycare centers are generally for the purpose of caring for children on an all day basis. Nursery schools are generally experiences in socialising and play.

Tuition fees in Montessori preschools throughout the country is sometimes higher than other preschools because of the expensive materials, encompassing environment, curriculum and trained staff. It is however, a very reasonable cost in contrast to other activities you would plan for yourself or your child. It becomes a matter of what you value most. To give your child the finest possible experience in his most sensitive years is to give him a strong foundation throughout his life and probably ward off investment later to correct or remedy that which was missed. Many educators believe that it is wiser to invest in a child's preschool education than his college education. The child who enjoys learning and becomes self-directed at the critical preschool age will benefit through all his years of learning. The expense in this stage is a profitable long-term investment.