Among Montessorians this is well known. And yet forgetful, distracted and habit-driven creatures that we are, we forget. We send children to tutors who drill them on reading instead of playing with them in writing. We may even drill them on reading ourselves! And we forget the full series of sound games that form the foundation for reading. Then we forget the fun of the interpretive reading series that goes from words to phrases to sentence commands to literary passages through paragraph length.

We forget because we are innocently distracted, habit-driven humans who regress to traditional, conventional practices from our own childhood. It’s just that easy for us in the fullness of life in the Montessori classroom community to revert despite how convinced we are of better ways and how lengthy and thorough our Montessori training. Besides, when we get scared and filled with doubt over a child’s reading, we double down hard on old, outdated yet familiar and comforting methods. We overload a child with our anxiety around reading until it begins to look like she has a problem, maybe even dyslexia! In this article, Maren Schmidt reminds us of the child’s natural way of learning to read through all the fun activities in writing and then in interpretive reading. No drilling away thereby creating pseudo-dyslexia!

“The first thing you can do instead of having your child read out loud, is to encourage him or her to write every day. This writing can be a letter to family, copying from their reading book, copying a poem, their own writing, bible verses, etc. Keep them writing instead of reading out loud.”


Read Maren Schmidt’s Article