I would like to go over this topic of freedom in the Montessori classroom. When people hear of Montessori they think that children are allowed to do whatever they want. That it’s chaotic. That is far from the truth.
Maria Montessori states that you can’t have freedom without independence. What makes the Montessori classroom is the structure of the physical classroom and consistent ground rules. That is what builds a strong foundation for the child.
When the children understand the expectations they feel secure and free to explore. When they are given the opportunity to explore within proper limits they learn that freedom comes with responsibility. Then they develop inner disciple.
Maria Montessori spoke a lot about the development of inner discipline and the development of the will. She states in her book, The Absorbent Mind: “Let us always remember that inner discipline is something to come, and not something already present”
This is why a child needs an environment which balances freedom and limits. In order to engage in a meaningful activity where they will learn to control their own actions and exercise their developing will.
The child who is truly free is the one that works joyfully, independently, with order and self-discipline. This is the goal of the Montessori environment for the child to truly feel free.