15 May 2017 - 11:09am


Parenting is one of the most rewarding and challenging roles we play as adults. Our society has high expectations of parents and yet we are not always able to access the resources we need to become the parent we want to be. Montessori can offer you a parenting framework from birth to maturity. It is more than an educational method; it is an approach to supporting the full development of your child.  

The following are some simple, yet effective ways in which adults can support the development of a young child.


Freedom within Limits

We offer the child the freedom to grow and learn within developmentally appropriate limits. The freedoms and limits we offer to the child, reflect histheir knowledge and capabilities. The choices we offer and the limits we set , will change as the child grows. For example, a young baby is offered the freedom to move within a safe space and to choose which of two2 appropriate objects she to they  will manipulate. A toddler is offered a choice between two2 sets of clothes to wear, or which toy hethey will put away first.

Through this freedom to choose within a set of limits designed to keep the child and others safe, the child learns to make independent decisions. Self-discipline develops through hertheir independent experience of the consequences of these decisions. 

We view setting limits for the child as the way in which we can set the child free.


Establishing what is acceptable

  • Your child spends his first few years learning what is acceptable behaviour and what isn’t.
  • This learning process is easier for your child if you warmly and consistently give your child the same message. Establish the limits and stick to them.
  • Your child is absorbing your social behavior as a model. If you behaveare aggressively towards your child, this will be mirrored in her behavior.
  • Tantrums often occur when a child feels stressed, hungry, tired or over-stimulated. Young children have more limited communication skills than adults and a tantrum is sometimes the only means through which your child can express heimrself, at a given moment.


Setting limits is good for your child because she will:

  • learn what behavior is appropriate in different settings such as home, a friend’s house, child care, preschool or school 
  • develop self-discipline and learn how to manage hertheir own behavior
  • begin to understand and manage her own feelings and express them
  • develop important skills thatwhich will enable her to get along with other people


If your child does have a tantrum...

  • insist upon the limit you have set; avoid changing your mind
  • stay calm and slow yourself down
  • ignore the behavior whilest your child is angry. If the emotion turns to sadness, step in to provide comfort
  • talk to your child about what happened later in the day when you are both calmer


Potential Pitfalls 

Anger: The more aggressive you are the more aggressive your child will be. Avoid restraining your child, using force or smacking your child. 

Manipulation: When you bribe, you teach your child to stick to the limits for your sake, instead of being self-motivated. 

Being Passive: Avoid allowing your child to do whatever he wants to do. This gives him the impression that you do not care and that he can do whatever he wants, when he wants.