Why Circle Time is Important in a Montessori Classroom
A classroom in Montessori is a busy place in the morning. Children participate in self-directed and teacher-leading courses. You work, you are active, you are active and you have time. It’s Circle Time before you know! Circle Time cannot be underestimated in Montessori. Circle time is an important element for dynamics in the classroom and builds a sense that classmates have in common.
What exactly is Circle Time?
At the end of the working period in the morning and in the afternoon again Circle Time takes place. It is a time when all the children come into the group of the teacher. Typically it lasts from 15-30 minutes and consists of routines, traditions, music, moves, talking, learning and having fun.
The teacher invites the lecturer with a soft chime or bell at the end of the morning to the circle-time space, and says it finishes. The children clean up their work and get to the area. This is one of many transitions that occur throughout the day, and the classroom is now ready for lunch.
Developing a Community Spirit
Circle Time is an opportunity for the class to get together and participate in a range of activities as a little community. It’s an opportunity for children to share, either through a show-and-tell style or just via conversation as they wait for their peers to clean up and join the circle. Also, it’s time to show off photos of a new baby sister or brother, chat about what occurred over the weekend, and raise their hand to inform everyone about what’s going on at home or during the day.
Circle Time is a time for celebrating birthday celebrations and other events: a lost tooth, a bike without training wheels, or a big first, like a plane ride or a move to a new house. Sharing in each other’s lives brings the class closer together and is more connected. Circle Time is a time for togetherness and connection, even in the midst of a pandemic, with social distancing guidelines and mask-wearing policies in place.
Group Lessons Learning
Most Montessori lessons, such as math and language arts, are designed for a single child, but some lessons lend themselves to a larger group setting. The whole class can be present at cycle time with many science, geography, and art lessons. The Children’s House offers these lessons to every child irrespective of their age, so it is important that all children receive lessons prior to the addition of new materials to the shelves.
Lessons in geography and science lend themselves well to discussion and Circle Time. This is an excellent time to start this conversation. A teacher may present a new lesson or introduce a new topic, but much of the learning takes place in the follow-up conversation that takes place over the next few days or even weeks.
Every Child’s Role
Circle Time is when children can learn from one another and collaborate. The morning follows the completion of work and the preparation for lunch. There are tasks that needs to be complete, work to be clean up, and a classroom to be reorganize. Children assist in watering plants, organizing shelves, and sweeping the floor. Everyone collaborates to ensure that the classroom is ready for the next phase of the day.
Routines and Customs
A consistent, predictable routine is critical for young children. A child who cannot yet tell time or read a calendar and has little input into their daily schedule can use routines to navigate their day and know what is coming up. Routines provide children with a sense of security.