Montessori and Peace in Honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January has Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a good time to focus on some Montessori peace activities, and quotes and books and songs.

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Below are some helpful quotes from my Montessori training manual on Peace Education (you can also read the complete "Montessori's Education for Peace" post here):

"At the preschool stage when children are in an absorbent state of mind, they are exposed to the Continents of the World and the Peoples of the World, thus providing the basis for a global view of life and humanity's part in it....

"At the elementary stage students are in a reasoning, abstracting, and imagining state of mind. The Peoples of the World are studied in depth and from a historical perspective, with the help of timelines (6-9 Elementary History Curriculum), leading to the discovery that all humans have the same fundamental needs (Geography Curriculum) and that the fulfillment of these needs vary according to the potentialities present in each given geographical environment and historical era. By emphasizing the family of humans and the interrelationship of all life, students begin to realize that the individual is not an isolated, fragmentary entity separated from the life around him but rather an integral part of a potentially harmonious whole."

The following are Montessori lesson activities included in the Education for Peace Curriculum:
World Continent Puzzle Map
People of the World
Animals of the World
Fundamental Needs Of People
Spiritual Needs Of People

If you have the book, How to Raise an Amazing Child the Montessori Way, there is a wonderful chapter called "Solving Problems at the Peace Table" with lovely pictues (page 126-129): "When children need help to resolve issues themselves, direct them to the peace table..." I highly recommend it for children five and up.

Here are some peace quotes your children can copy and or write and or read:
1. "Averting war is the work of politicians; establishing peace is the work of education."--Maria Montessori
2. "What is Peace? Is it war? No. Is it strife? No. Is it lovely, and gentle, and beautiful, and pleasant, and serene, and joyful? O yes!"--Charles Dickens
3. "There never was a good war or a bad peace."--Benjamin Franklin

Below are some peace and conflict resolution books I recommend:
  • Education and Peace by Maria Montessori: Buy it used on Amazon. Buy it new at Nienhuis.
  • Peace books by Naomi Drew: Peaceful Parents, Peaceful Kids; Peaceful Classroom in Action; Learning the Skills of Peacemaking: A K-6 Activity Guide; Hope and Healing: Peaceful Parenting in an Uncertain World.
  • Montessori: Living the Good Life by Connie Lujan. "The author goes where no one dares to go, explicating Maria’s concepts of the origins of war and peace and how we can make a difference."
  • The Tao of Montessori: Reflections on Compassionate Teaching by Catherine McTamaney.
More recommended peace and conflict resolution books here!

Some of the Montessori lesson activities I mentioned in this blog post can be found in Montessori online albums:
Other Montessori and non-Montessori blogs with posts on Montessori and Peace Education, and posts on MLK activities:

1. Montessori for Everyone "10 Ways to Promote Peace"
2. Living Montessori Now: "Montessori Education Week Peace Lesson"
3. Teacher Time 123 blog: "Writing Prompts for Martin Luther King Day"

A wonderful personal blog essay: "Peace in the World Starts with Our Children."

You may also be interested in my recommended Montessori and homeschool books for parents and teachers on or my Montessori and homeschool programs at Montessori for the Earth.

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