Montessori Farm School Quotes

“Psychologists interested in adolescent education think of it as a period of so much psychic transformation that it bears comparison with the first period from birth to six. The character is seldom stable at this age; there are signs of indiscipline and rebellion. Physical health is less stable and assured than before.”

Maria Montessori – The Absorbent Mind, p. 19

“But, above all it is the education of adolescents that is important, because adolescence is the time when the child enters on the state of manhood and becomes a member of society.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 60)

“If puberty is on the physical side a transition from an infantile to an adult state, there is also, on the psychological side, a transition from the child who has to live in a family, to the man who has to live in society . These two needs of the adolescent: for protection during the time of the difficult physical transition, and for an understanding of the society which he is about to enter to play his part as a man.

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 60)

“The chief symptom of adolescence is a state of expectation, a tendency towards creative work and a need for the strengthening of self-confidence.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 63)

“The essential reform is this: to put the adolescent on the road to achieving economic independence . We might call it a “school of experience in the elements of social life.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 64)

“…derive great personal benefit from being initiated in economic independence . For this would result in a “valorization” of his personality, in making him feel himself capable of succeeding in life by his own efforts and on his own merits, and at the same time it would put him in direct contact with the supreme reality of social life . We speak therefore of letting him earn money by his own work.

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 65)

“Education should therefore include the two forms of work, manual and intellectual, for the same person, and thus make it understood by practical experience that these two kinds complete each other and are equally essential to a civilized existence.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 65)

“Productive work and a wage that gives economic independence, or rather constitutes a first real attempt to achieve economic independence, could be made with advantage a general principle of social education for adolescents and young people.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 66)

“Independence, in the case of the adolescents, has to be acquired on a different plane, for theirs is the economic independence in the field of society. Here, too, the principle of “Help me to do it alone!” ought to be applied.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 67)

“The essential reform of our plan from this point of view may be defined as follows : during the difficult time of adolescence it is helpful to leave the accustomed environment of the family in the town and go to quiet surroundings in the country, close to nature. Here, an open-air life, individual care, and a non-toxic diet, must be the first considerations in organizing a “centre for study and work.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 67)

“Life in the open air, in the sunshine, and a diet high in nutritional content coming from the produce of neighbouring fields improve the physical health, while the calm surroundings, the silence, the wonders of nature satisfy the need of the adolescent mind for reflection and meditation.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 67)

“Therefore work on the land is an introduction both to nature and to civilization and gives a limitless field for scientific and historic studies. If the produce can be used commercially this brings in the fundamental mechanism of society, that of production and exchange, on which economic life is based. This means that there is an opportunity to learn both academically and through actual experience what are the elements of social life. We have called these children the “Erdkinder” because they are learning about civilization through its origin in agriculture. They are the “land-children.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 68)

“The school where the children live, or rather their country homes, can also give them the opportunity for social experience, for it is an institution organized on a larger scale and with greater freedom than the family. This organization could take the form of a private hotel as far as the management and control are concerned.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 69)

“A shop or store could be established in the nearest big town, and here the land-children could easily bring and sell the produce of their fields and garden and other things that they had made.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 69)

“The shop would also necessitate a genuine study of commerce and exchange, of the art of ascertaining the demand and being ready to meet it, of the strict and rigid rules of bookkeeping . But the thing that is important above everything else is that the adolescent should have a life of activity and variety, and that one occupation should act as a “holiday” from another occupation. The shop would be in respect to the studies of economics and politics an educational object, similar to the aquarium or terrarium in the case of the study of biology.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 70)

“The adolescent must never be treated as a child, for that is a stage of life that he has surpassed. It is better to treat an adolescent as if he had greater value than he actually shows than as if he had less and let him feel that his merits and self-respect are disregarded.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 72)

“The organization must be determined because it is necessary to develop the power of self-adjustment to the environment as it is found, and this adaptation results in cooperation and a happy social life that will facilitate individual progress. The environment must make the free choice of occupation easy, and therefore eliminate the waste of time and energy in following vague and uncertain preferences. From all this the result will be not only self-discipline but a proof that self discipline is an aspect of individual liberty and the chief factor of success in life. A very important matter is the fundamental order in the succession of occupations during the day, and the times for the “change-over”. This should be experimental at first and develop into an established thing; necessities will arise and will have to be dealt with and this will tend to create an organization. But it is necessary to consider not only the active occupations but the need for solitude and quiet, which are essential for the development of the hidden treasures of the soul.”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 73)

“…there would be all kinds of artistic occupations open to free choice both as to the time and the nature of the work. Some must be for the individual and some would require the cooperation of a group. They would involve artistic and linguistic ability and imagination,…”

(From Childhood to Adolescence, p. 75)