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Freedom and Joy

By Trudy Shepard, Director of Education, UMA

Dr. Montessori believed the most important element of Montessori teacher training was his/her inner preparation.

“The preparation must come from within…. by her studying of her own self… to eliminate the deeply rooted defects such as …anger, pride… which hinder her understanding of the child. A directress does not have to be entirely free from fault and weaknesses as long as she is willing to constantly seek and perfect her inner self.” M. Montessori.

When you think of Montessori, key words that immediately come to mind are “Freedom of Choice.”

So, how does our inner preparation relate to freedom of choice?

“Choice and execution are the prerogatives and conquests of a liberated soul.”    M. Montessori. 

Henri Nouwen, renowned theologian, writes in his book Bread for the Journey, “Joy is what makes life worth living, but for many joy seems hard to find. They complain that their lives are sorrowful and depressing. What then brings the joy we so much desire? Are some people just lucky, while others have run out of luck? Strange as it may sound, we can choose joy. Two people can be part of the same event, but one may choose to live it quite differently than the other. One may choose to trust that what happened, painful as it may be, holds a promise. The other may choose despair and be destroyed by it.

What makes us human is precisely this freedom of choice.” H. Nouwen.

Our Montessori training is a spiritual and moral training, as well as academic training. We must Physically, Mentally, and Spiritually be prepared for the task. So, as we examine ourselves and make choices that will impact those precious lives with whom we are in contact, consider this...

Choose to live joyfully!

United Montessori Association. ©2010 All rights reserved.

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