Artistic expression was considered by Dr Montessori to be one of the fundamental needs of humans. In particular, she encouraged children to draw. She felt that if children have fine motor control of the hand, learned through the exercises of practical life, combined with trained skills in perception, learned through the exercises of the senses, they would be able to create visual art works of a high quality.
Dr Montessori observed that during periods of creative drawing and design work, children concentrate ‘deeply and wholly’ with their ‘entire intellect at work’. She describes the process in the following way:
‘To confer the gift of drawing, we must create an eye that sees, a hand that obeys, a soul that feels; and in this task the whole of life must cooperate’.
Art appreciation is an important aspect of Montessori early childhood settings. By looking at the art works of others, children learn that it is possible to create different and unique works while using knowledge, skill and techniques developed by others.
The students explore visual language. and develop the ways they do so through visual skills, techniques and processes, and using materials and technologies.
These activities form part of the Montessori integrated curriculum.