Children are born with special mental powers which aid in the work of their own construction. But they cannot accomplish the task of self-construction without purposeful movement, exploration, and discovery of their environment. They must be given the freedom to use their inborn powers to develop physically, intellectually, and spiritually. It is the Montessori classroom that provides this freedom within the limits of an environment which develops a sense of order and self-discipline within the child.
Children have sensitive periods in which they seek certain stimuli with immense intensity, to the exclusion of all others. So it is during this time the child can most easily master particular learning skills. Dr. Maria Montessori devised special materials to aid children during each sensitive period. It is the responsibility of the teacher to recognize these periods in individual children and put them in touch with the appropriate materials in the classroom environment.