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Investigatingthe views of Montessori preschool teachers on inclusive education in Montessori approach

Ak, İdil Seda
The purpose of the study was to investigatethe views of Montessori preschool teachers on inclusive education in Montessori approach. The views of 18 participants wereexamined in thisstudy. All participants wereselected from Ankara and İstanbul and they wereinvestigated by a semi-structured interview protocol thatwas developed by the researcherbased on the literature review.The protocol containedquestions in three major parts; these were demographic questions about participants, questions about views on inclusive education and questions about views oninclusive education inMontessori approach and its advantageous and disadvantageous for childrenwith disabilities. Phenomenologydesignwas employed inthe study and purposive sampling was used to reach the participants. According to findings of content analysis,Montessori teachers stated that they did not find themselves adequately educated and experienced in inclusive education but a large part of them thought that inclusive education is good for development of both disabled and non-disabled students.On the other hand, Montessori teachers expressed that enabling children to be independent and to encourage them to make their own vdecisions are the most important point of Montessori understanding. However, when considered in terms of disabled students, most teachers indicated that such liberal environment could constitute disadvantages for such students. Teachers stated that an educational environment which is structured and where influence of the teacher is more intensive would be better in terms of education of the disabled child, particularly when working with students with severe disabilities or students with attention deficit or autism.