Kindness, Grace, and Courtesy: Do They Matter?
Kindness, grace, and courtesy can fundamentally change every human interaction, yet these traits are rarely taught or practiced in school settings anymore.
Because modern day education now consists of students struggling to master information for a test, children are rarely given time to interact with their peers and teachers without the shadow of pressure and performance. Technology is being introduced earlier and earlier with a push to “create innovators” and “assimilate to the new modern world” but in doing so, we need to consider if we have stopped teaching our children the fundamentals of social engagement.
Maria Montessori held kindness and respect for others as a core belief and designed her education model around this. Lessons in grace and courtesy are taught from the earliest age. Classrooms operate as a community, creating a measured microcosm to instill and practice the virtues of being a good citizen, while still engaging in the everyday classroom curriculum. Thoughtfulness and respect for others are woven into interactions at every level, creating an understanding that the success of both the individual and the group are at stake. By teaching kindness and respect in the Montessori classroom alongside the standard curriculum, we aid children in the social development that will be a part of who they are for the rest of their lives.
As is often the case, modern ideas are catching up to what Montessori discovered a 100 years ago. Recently, The Atlantic and this Tedx event tackled the importance of how we can best support our children to take on the challenge of creating a better world for their future. We hope you enjoy both and can’t wait to hear what you think!