Family Parenting Real Life

What Is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

Have you heard of such a thing as a Montessori peace table? What in the world is that? How does it work and why is it important? But the one question you may be asking the most is, “Why do you say that every homeschool should have a peace table?” Let me explain.

Not only is it International Peace Day on September 21st, but it is imperative for our world to try its utmost to grow, develop, encourage, and spread peace throughout. It is up to each of us to gain control over our emotions and choose peace.

To be a peacemaker…a peacekeeper…wow, what a difficult task it seems to be!

What is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

Peace Keepers and Peace Seekers Are Lacking

disclaimerThis is why we must make peace a mainstay in our hearts and minds, but we would do our children (and their generation) a favor by helping them develop it in their own hearts and minds. It is common for human beings to have intense feelings and/or have run-ins with other humans. I mean, let’s face it, when you put two or more children in one room, chances are that they will have at least one conflict.
Sometimes, these conflicts can get out of control because:

A) They don’t know how to channel and communicate their intense emotions.

B) That is how these situations are handled around them.

C) They haven’t learned or been taught that being a peacekeeper is important.

What is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

How the Peace Table Is Set Up

This is where the Montessori Peace Table comes in. You DO NOT have to use Montessori as your method of choice in your homeschool to embrace this activity. All you need for a Montessori Peace Table is a child-sized table, two child-sized chairs and a timer (I like an hourglass that is set for 3 or 5 minutes).

Additionally, to make it beautiful, you may choose a delicately carved table or lace tablecloth and a candle or a flower to be placed at the center of the table. If you feel that a regular candle would pose a danger to your child instead of inspiration to seek peace, then you can use a small potted plant, a flower in a pretty vase, or a battery-operated faux candle.

Lastly, you will need a peace object at the table. This peace object can be as simple as a smooth river stone or a beaded necklace made of natural fibers. Try your best to place it in a quieter area in your home, but the surrounding should be open and pleasing to the sight, preferably near a window or a place lit with natural light.

What is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

Lessons on Peace, Courtesy, and Grace

Teach your children a lesson on grace, courtesy, and most importantly, about peace before using the Peace Table for the first time. Read them books about peace and how to be a courteous and good friend. Bible stories are great resources to teach character traits such as these.

It is important to point out what the Peace Table is for. Children need time to sit alone in silence at the table without being disturbed. You will need to explain to them the reason for this and how the timer/hourglass works. Let them learn to operate the time or hourglass on their own.

When the child sits at the Peace Table alone, he can close his eyes to calm down, stare at the hourglass as the sand goes down, and look at the plant, flower, or candle on the table. The child may also choose to hold the peace object in his hands. Practice this skill with each child.

What is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

When and How the Peace Table Is Used

When you feel your child needs a moment of peace and quiet, gently walk that child to the Peace Table as you whisper to her in a peaceful and calm voice. Allow your child to spend a minute or two there to be in silence and calm down. The Peace Table is mainly used to encourage conflict resolution between two children, but it is just as effective for inner conflict resolution.

When a child is upset at another, that child should refrain from reacting in anger or crying or raising her voice. Instead, she should invite that child to the Peace Table. They walk over and sit together at the table. The child who is upset should begin talking and explaining in a calm manner why she is upset at the other child.

The children take turns, but the goal is not to keep the conflict going. Instead, the goal is to resolve it in a quick and thorough manner. When one person is speaking, he holds the peace object in his hands. When that child is finished talking, then he gently hands the peace object over to the other child signaling the other child’s turn to speak. If a resolution isn’t reached by the time the timer goes off, then a mediator (an adult only) should step in.

What is a Montessori Peace Table? Why Every Homeschool Should Have One

Why Should Every Homeschool Have a Peace Table?

In short, using something as simple as a Peace Table will not only empower your children to take control of themselves and their emotions, but they will take control and responsibility over their own conflict resolution as well as be a peace seeker and a peacemaker.

Will you give the Peace Table a try in your homeschool? And yes, sometimes moms also need to make use of the Peace Table, and you know what? It is perfectly fine to do. 🙂

About the author

Tanya

Tanya is a homeschooling mom to two children, a son and a daughter. She focuses on following their particular learning interests at their level and in building a strong Christian foundation in their hearts. To cater to their high giftedness, she uses an eclectic teaching approach, which complement each other and maximize the fun in learning. Tanya has a degree in elementary education, a minor in French and a Master's degree in school administration. She is happily married to her best friend and enjoys sharing her life and experiences in her blog to provide inspiration and bring new ideas.

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