Tips For Choosing Your Montessori Classroom Furniture
If you've recently signed on to work in a Montessori school, the first thing you need to do is to set up your classroom. In many Montessori schools, they leave the classroom furniture selection up to the teacher so that the room is created with the vision that the teacher has for his or her students that year.
For a new teacher, though, this process can be a bit intimidating. Before you start ordering, here are some things that you should think about.
Choose The Right Chairs And Tables
When you're preparing your furniture order, the first thing you should focus on is the tables and chairs. After all, if the students don't have anywhere to sit, they won't be able to work on their tasks.
Make sure that the tables and chairs are the right sizes. If you will have a classroom of very young children, make sure the chairs stand approximately a foot or under up from the floor. That way, they are easy for the kids to sit in. Work up a few inches at a time for each age group above the preschoolers.
Further, since Montessori schools focus on activities and engagement, choose furniture that's resistant to staining and other problems. Polyurethaned materials will be easy to clean, even from errant crayon marks.
Hang Coat Hooks And Cubbies At The Proper Level
Remember that you can't teach a child to hang up their coat and put their belongings away if they can't reach the coat hooks or the cubbies. Before you hang them, measure up to the typical child's reach, and hang them so that they are just below it.
That way, you account for any children who may be shorter. The easier everything is for the kids to reach, the easier it will be to teach autonomy and accountability, which are key foundations for Montessori schools.
Trade The Teacher's Desk For A Rocking Chair
Montessori classrooms are child-led. They aren't controlled by the teacher. That's why the teacher should be a facilitator, not an authority figure.
This means eliminating the teacher's desk, which is a symbol of authority. Instead, replace it with something warm, like a rocking chair that's part of a reading center. That gives you somewhere you can sit during read-aloud times, and the children will likely use it during free-reading as well.
These are a few of the key considerations for setting up your first Montessori classroom. Talk with a school furniture supplier such as School Supply Specialty for more information.