Foxburrow Grange apply the Montessori Principles towards aged and dementia care.
At Foxburrow Grange we use the Montessori aged care approach towards the management of dementia care.
Montessori has come to the forefront of alternative dementia treatment in recent years. The concept of using the Montessori aged cared approach with our dementia residents stems from the guiding principles of the Montessori method of teaching (Children) which is to “follow the child”, in other words, the teacher must consider the capabilities and needs of each child, tailoring activities to make them a little beyond the child’s comfort zone but not so challenging that he or she becomes frustrated and gives up. This same concept can be applied to those caring for people living with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. The Montessori method of engaging the senses can be applied very effectively for those with the disease to help reconnect the pathways in the brain with experiences which they are losing access to and to rediscover the world around them. These adults, need individualised, sensorial experiences in order to thrive and as in all elderly care too, it is essential to foster independence, high self-esteem, and a promising future, no matter the presentation of the condition for each individual.
Scientific studies conducted over the past two decades have revealed that dementia patients participating in a Montessori program approach experience less agitation and wandering (two common symptoms of the neurological disease) and in many instances become less reliant on medication to control their dementia. Further research into Montessori and its effects on older adults has also revealed that it’s not just for dementia patients. In fact, most nursing home residents can benefit from Montessori-style activities and experiences. Studies show that this approach can result in increased feelings of self-worth, greater levels of engagement, and more communication with staff, family members, and fellow residents.
12 Montessori Aged Care Principles
Below is an overview of 12 Montessori principles and some of our tips.
1. Each activity should have a sense of purpose and capture the person’s engagement
2. Always invite the person to participate
3. Offer choice whenever possible
4. Talk less; demonstrate more
5. Physical skills; focus on what the person can do
6. Match your speed with the person you are caring for
7. Use visual hints, cues or templates
8. Give the person something to hold
9. Go from simple tasks to more complex ones
10. Break a task down into steps; make it easier to follow
11. To end, ask: ‘Did you enjoy doing this?’ and ‘Would you like to do this again?’
12. There is no right or wrong. Think engagement
Montessori focusses on what you can do , not what you can't do ...