An integral, but often overlooked aspect of our day to day lives is that of communication skills. Some people manage to impress us and leave a mark in our memory for their amazing abilities to communicate and sometimes, some brilliant ideas and plans suffer at the hands of ineffective communication. During my routine scrolling through social media, I came across an interesting video on how communication was soon going to be a skill that needs to be honed among children to make them succeed in all aspects of life. In a gist, the video conveyed the message that with the rapid changes in organizational hierarchy, organizational goals and perception of personal success the impetus was on encouraging communication of ideas between people rather than mere listening to and following of instructions.

The so-called modern day schooling has largely been based on the requirement that came up during the industrial revolution. At that time, workers who absorbed the instructions are followed them precisely were an asset. Hence, schools and other educational institutions focused on helping students become good listeners and good followers. However, the need of the hour is skilled workers with the ability to come up with creative solutions and the ability to communicate their ideas effectively.

A school is where a child is first exposed to authority, different types of personalities, engaging with people from different age groups and back grounds. It is here that a child gets the first taste of expressing itself. In a Montessori environment, a child is encouraged to express its ideas freely. A child is often put at ease and not driven through a race against time to pick up words and rhymes as a parameter of judging verbal competency. This helps all the children communicate amongst themselves and work co-operatively. A two pronged approach of developing an understanding of interpersonal and intra-personal needs is followed to raise confident children. It is imperative that our little ones understand about themselves as much as they understand about the world around them.

The Montessori Method acknowledges that language is only one of the dimensions of communication. There is a stress on tone, volume, expression, choice of words and body language. The focus is on grooming social skills at a young age while the knowledge of the language grows. As parents, we must converse with our children, so that they learn to reason, understand and appreciate the world of words and the power it holds.

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